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Stirling, Broad Street, St John's Street

No Class (Event)

Site Name Stirling, Broad Street, St John's Street

Classification No Class (Event)

Canmore ID 109578

Site Number NS79SE 183

NGR NS 792 937

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council Stirling
  • Parish Stirling
  • Former Region Central
  • Former District Stirling
  • Former County Stirlingshire

Archaeology Notes

NS79SE 183 792 937

NS 792 937 In advance of the insertion of three substantial tree planters as part of environmental improvements in the area, the Trust was commissioned to carry out an excavatin in June 1995. The excavation comprised three areas, each measuring 2.8m by 3.8m, located on a triangular piece of open ground on the southern side of Broad Street, set c1m back from the frontage and parallel to it. Area 1 was situated at the lower eastern end of the open ground, and areas 2 and 3 situated further up the slope of Broad Street.

The earliest evidence of activity found on the site was in the form of a garden soil that directly overlay weathered dolerite sill bedrock. This was found c1m below ground surface in areas 1 and 2 and had a maximum thickness of 0.55m. Sherds of pottery recovered from this layer indicate a 13th-15th century date. Cut through this layer, in Area 1 only, was a remnant of a stone frontage wall, possibly representing the frontage of a building of post-medieval date. A thin deposit of midden, containing pottery of no earlier than 17th century date, was found in Area 2 only. In all three areas, the remains of a late 18th century building and associated drainage were found.

This later building utilised part of the foundation from the earlier structure identified in Area 1. Evidence of a contemporary turnpike stair was also uncovered in Area 2. This building is undoubtedly the same structure that was photographed by John Muir Wood in c1850. Map evidence indicates that this building was demolished sometime between 1858 and 1896. Demolition rubble and modern levelling deposits sealed the areas investigated.

No evidence of any metalled surfaces relating to an open market area, that was thought to have existed in this part of the burgh in antiquity, was found. This may be due to truncation from the late 18th century development.

Sponsor: The Dew Group Ltd.

J R Mackenzie 1995.

NS 792 937 Environmental improvements in the centre of the Old Town in Stirling involved the relaying of the road surfaces, renewal of services and the digging of tree pits. SUAT carried out a watching brief between June 1995 and April 1996.

The improvements to Broad Street confirmed the presence of anaerobic midden deposits confined to a cleft in the bedrock running across Broad Street from NE?SW. It seems likely that similar clefts may survive elsewhere in Stirling. In the main the groundworks in all areas stopped when they reached the top of archaeological deposits. However it seems likely that mortar and stone observed in front of Holy Rude Church in St John Street may be the top of the demolished remains of the Old Manse or Almshouse which stood in the street until 1824. Structural remains observed further along St John Street appear to be the foundation walls of a small building visible on the 1898 OS map, which stood in the street until St John Street was realigned. Make-up or grading deposits observed on the W side of St John Street opposite Holy Rude Church and Mar?s Wark may have been laid during this realignment. The make-up or grading deposits located on the W side of Castle Wynd may also have been part of this realignment.

Sponsor: Dew Group Ltd.

R Cachart and D Hall 1996


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