MHG9904 - Allt Bad Raifin


No summary available.

Type and Period (1)

  • HUT CIRCLE (Neolithic to Late Iron Age - 4000 BC to 560 AD)

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

NC92NW 3 900 265.

('A' : NC 9004 2666 'B' : NC 9009 2666 'C' : NC 9010 2667 'D' : NC 9000 2655 'E' : NC 9001 2651 'F' : NC 9002 2648) Hut Circles (NR) (NC 9002 2649) Earth House (NR)
OS 6"map, (1963)

A settlement of six hut-circles discovered during field investigation (Information from OS (J L D) 22 May 1961), on either side of the Allt Bad Ru'fin. Five of the huts are similar with heather-covered walls spread up to 2.5m. They are both oval and Circular, and vary from 7.0m to 12.5m, internal diameter, with entrances in the SE.
The sixth circle, 'F', is of the Kilphedir Hut II type, with a souterrain attached on the north. The hut measures 7m in diameter within a wall 1.2m thick and 0.5m high which is revetted on both faces by upright boulders. The entrance-passage in the SE is 3.5m long and 0.6m wide flanked by boulders, some of which block the passage. Abutting the hut on the SW, are two rectangular structures defined by boulder walls. The larger measures 7m NE-SW by 3m and the smaller 3m by 2.5m. The walls are 0.2m high. The souterrain is in a turf-covered, stony mound some 7m in diameter and 1m high which abuts the hut on the north. The roof has collapsed in the centre of the mound revealing the lintels and side walls of part of the structure. The cavity is 1.2m wide, but debris prevents the depth and extent being determined. Another lintel slab lies in situ 2m SW of the cavity.
Using the Kilphedir excavation as an analogy the sequence of occupation would appear to be a settlement of'simple' huts about 500 BC followed around 130 BC by the single more substantial hut with its souterrain, probably on the site of one of the earlier huts. This settlement is as described by the previous field investigator except that a further hut ('G') was discovered close by hut'F', with its SE arc overlaid by the larger of the 'rectangular structures' abutting 'F'. It measures 9.0m in diameter within a denuded wall, overgrown with peat and heather. The entrance is in the south arc. Associated cultivation is restricted to a few scattered clearance heaps and indeterminate areas of smooth stone free ground.
Surveyed at 1/10,000.
H Fairhurst and D B Taylor 1974

On gently-sloping ground on the first terrace to the NW of the Suisgill Burn, there are two groups of hut-circles ranged along either side of the Allt Bad Ra'fin (A-C, D-G). The hut-circles to the S lie along a ridge which is covered in slight plough furrows, some of which overlie hut-circle 'D'.

A. NC 9004 2666 This hut-circle measures 8.1m from NW to SE by 6.4m transversely within a stone-faced bank 3.6m in thickness and 0.6m in height. The entrance is on the SE, and the interior is raised above the level of the surrounding ground surface.
(KILD91 128)

B. NC 9009 2666 This hut-circle measures 9.2m in diameter within a heather-covered bank 3.6m in thickness and 0.7m in height. The entrance is on the SE and the interior is levelled into the slope.
(KILD91 129)

C. NC 9010 2667 This hut-circle measures 7.6m in diameter within a heather-covered bank 2.2m in thickness and 0.5m in height. The entrance is on the S, and the interior is levelled into the slope.
(KILD91 130)

D. NC 9000 2654 This hut-circle measures 10.5m in diameter within a stone-faced bank 3.4m in thickness. The entrance, which has been disturbed, lies on the SE and the hut-circle is surrounded, and overlain, by slight plough furrows.
(KILD91 124)

E. NC 9001 2651 This hut-circle measures 10.2m in diameter within a heather-covered bank 3.6m in thickness and 0.5m in height. The entrance is on the SE, and the interior is raised above the surrounding ground surface.
(KILD91 123)

F. NC 9002 2648 At the S end of the group (D-G) there is a building complex comprising a stone-walled hut-circle and souterrain (F), abutted by a sub-rectangular building which overlies a probable hut-circle (G). The stone-walled hut-circle measures 6.7m in diameter within a wall 2m in average thickness and 0.5m in height; the inner face is revetted with upright boulders built in a series of facets. The wall thickens towards the entrance, which lies on the SSE, and the entrance-passage has been extended by the addition of an outer skin of walling. A crescentic souterrain (6.5m long, 1m wide and 0.5m high) opens from the N of the interior with the body of the passage lying outside the hut-circle wall and encased in a mound of stones. The roof has been formed of stone lintels, a number of which remain in situ. To the SW of the hut-circle and abutting its wall, there are the remains of a sub-rectangular building measuring 6.5m from NE to SW by 2.6m transversely within a stone-faced bank, 1m in thickness and 0.4m high, with a possible entrance on the S. It overlies the SE arc of a much-reduced hut-circle, about 9m in diameter within a low bank, with an entrance on the SSE. A small, circular hut (1.5m in diameter) has been built in the angle formed at the junction of the hut-circle wall and that of the sub-rectangular building.
(KILD91 121)

Some 60m to the NW of hut-circle 'D' there is a bloomery mound, composed of slag and fragments of charcoal, which has been supplemented by clearance.

About a dozen small cairns measuring up to 4m in diameter and 0.4m in height are scattered about in the vicinity of the hut-circles and there are low terraces to the ENE and WSW of hut-circles 'F' and 'G'.

Visited by RCAHMS (DCC) 5 April 1991.

Sources/Archives (2)



Grid reference Centred NC 9006 2657 (164m by 270m) (2 map features)
Map sheet NC92NW
Geographical Area SUTHERLAND
Civil Parish KILDONAN

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