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Date June 2019

Event ID 1107074

Category Recording

Type Excavation


NS 50290 73660 Excavations took place in June 2019, around two rock art panels in Auchnacraig Park, Faifley. These panels are known as Auchnacraig 1 and 3 in the new Scotland’s Rock art Project nomenclature. The panels are located in the former garden of Auchnacraig House which was demolished in the 1970s. Geophysical survey in this location gave indication that the foundations of this house remain extant below surface level but no above ground traces of the house survive. One small trench was opened on the E and N side of Auchnacraig 3. This rock art panel has a few cup marks on it but we found no additional symbols although a natural vesicle on the E side of the rock has the appearance of a cup mark. No features or material culture associated with the rock art were found.

Two trenches were opened around Auchnacraig 1. This is one of the most densely carved panels in West Dunbartonshire covered in a profusion of cup marks and several cups and rings. A small trench on the E side revealed a cluster of stones hard against the vertical E face of this outcrop this could be interpreted as a platform of unknown date, or perhaps is simply part of the landscaping of this location when it was a garden. This trench came down onto bedrock. The second trench, opened on the S side of the outcrop, exposed a drystone wall, which abuts the outcrop, and is likely a garden wall of 20th century date. A gap in this wall appears to be an entrance, allowing or controlling access up onto the rock outcrop itself, suggesting the rock art was made into a garden feature. A marble found in the topsoil here hints that marble games may have been played on the outcrop. A single cup mark was identified on a stone that was part of the garden wall a previously unrecorded piece of mobile rock art. No features or material culture associated with the rock art were found.

These excavations are part of a broader campaign of excavations around rock art panels to the north of Faifley called Faifley Rocks.

Archive: NRHE

Funder: Society of Antiquaries of Scotland

Kenneth Brophy, Alison Douglas and Tessa Poller – University of Glasgow

(Source: DES, Volume 20)

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