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All our staffed properties, sites and offices, including the HES Archives and Library, are currently closed, but we’re working on plans to gradually reopen. In the meantime, you can access our services online. Find out more.

Archaeology InSites

Age of Stone
Age of Bronze
Age of Iron
Age of Invasion
Age of Warriors
Age of Worship
Age of Kings
Age of Clans
Age of Industry
Age of Leisure
Age of War
This Age

Age of Leisure

The Age of Leisure explores the pleasures of prosperity. Discover sites that show advances in science and in health, with a meteorological observatory atop the country's tallest mountain and a hydropathic sanatorium on the west coast. Learn about the earliest Tennis Court, and a Bowling and Golf Green's depicted on a rare military map in the Highlands. Study the evidence for the oldest surviving music hall in the world, or investigate the remains of an abandoned Art Deco style outdoor swimming pool on the edge of the sea. Read the story of a railway station that helped take workers away from the daily grind, or learn about the ongoing restoration of a lost Japanese style garden.

Oban Hills Hydropathic Sanatorium; Oban Palace Hotel and Hydropathic - Oban, Argyll and Bute

On a hilltop above Oban stands an unfinished structure, a stone-built folly of Victorian speculation. Yet it is not McCaig’s Tower described here, but the less familiar remains of the Oban Hydropathic, perched on the next hill to its south.

Ben Nevis Meteorological Observatory - Fort William, Highland

At first glance, the emergency shelter on the summit of Ben Nevis looks like a peculiar chapel or shrine. However this peculiarity betrays the stump of an earlier tower that belonged to a 19th century weather observatory. Its incorporation into a sanctuary for climbers is merely another twist in the tale of ambition and reinvention at 4000 feet above sea level.