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Dingwall, Church Street, Dingwall Parish Church, St Clement's Aisle

Burial Ground (Medieval), Church (16th Century)

Site Name Dingwall, Church Street, Dingwall Parish Church, St Clement's Aisle

Classification Burial Ground (Medieval), Church (16th Century)

Alternative Name(s) Dingwall, Tulloch Street, St Clement's Church; Old Church Of Dingwall

Canmore ID 12818

Site Number NH55NW 5

NGR NH 54936 58988

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
Canmore Disclaimer. © Copyright and database right 2020.

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Administrative Areas

  • Council Highland
  • Parish Dingwall
  • Former Region Highland
  • Former District Ross And Cromarty
  • Former County Ross And Cromarty

Archaeology Notes

NH55NW 5 54936 58988

(NH 5494 5898) Church {NR} (Site of)

(NH 5497 5899) St. Clement's Aisle {NR} (Remains of)

(The southern portion is shown unroofed on the 1st Ed., but roofed on the 2nd Ed.)

OS 25" map, Ross-shire, 1st ed., (1876).

See also: NH55NW 47.00 St Clement's Parish Church (NH 54934 58961).

Location formerly entered as NH 5494 5898.

All references met with give St. Clement's Aisle in the Church of Dingwall as a place of burial.

N Macrae 1923.

St. Colin's Church, Dingwall, was united with the Priory of Urquhart before A.D.1455. There was a chapel of St. Clement within the bounds.

H Scott 1928.

No trace remains of the old church of Dingwall at NH 5493 5898. The remains of St. Clement's Aisle are now used as a burial vault which measures 10.2 by 7.2 metres and 3.0 m in height. The south end of the structure, shown roofed, contains a large arched recess. The remainder of the aisle is unroofed.

Visited by OS (W D J), 17 April 1963.

Site Management (1 July 2014)

Two burial enclosures to the North of St Clement's Parish Church.

East enclosure - St Clement's Ailse: roofless remainder of the former parish church constructed 1510, replaced in 1799-1800 by the current George Burn church. Built up arches to South, North and East Elevations. The South elevation once opened to the medieval church, and lies a 15th century graveslab. To the South wall a late 18th century monument to the Mackenzies of Fairburn.

West enclosure: low wall with fat balusters, pediment over lugged-architraved entrance, circa 1700 (Gifford)


Publication Account (1982)

Dedicated to the Blessed Virgin, the pre-Reformation church of Dingwall belonged to Pluscarden Priory. In the churchyard to the north of the present church there is an enclosure called St. Clement's Aisle which is a surviving fragment of the medieval parish church. That church was thatched and in 1731 burned to the ground, a disturbance caused by a burgess shooting at a pigeon (MacRae, 1974, 334). Dingwall parishioners were forced to worship in a hired dwelling until a new church was built in 1801.

Information from ‘Historic Dingwall: The Archaeological Implications of Development’ (1982).

Watching Brief (2001)

NH 5496 5888 An archaeological watching brief was undertaken on a small extension to St Clements Church Hall. The site lies within the area of the royal burgh. No archaeological features or deposits were revealed, the area being heavily disturbed by services.

Full report lodged with Highland SMR and the NMRS.

Sponsor: St Clements Church Kirk of Session.

S Farrell 2001.

Geophysical Survey (8 September 2011 - 10 September 2011)

NH 54936 58988 A geophysical survey was undertaken, 8–10 September 2011, in St Clement’s Parish Church graveyard, as part of a research and community project investigating the archaeology of Dingwall’s Viking assembly site or ‘thing’. An electrical resistance survey was undertaken over the N side of the graveyard in the area surrounding St Clements’s Aisle. The survey aimed to locate the remains of Dingwall Old Parish Church, which was demolished at the end of the 18th century, leaving only the N aisle. The sample density was 1 x 0.5m with probe separation of 0.5m. Three linear high resistance anomalies aligned N–S were recorded to the S of the aisle. These were interpreted as truncated foundations of the W and E walls of the old church nave and the site of a rectangular chancel. A low earthwork SE of the aisle correlates with the geophysical results.

Archive: Highland Council (deposited) and RCAHMS (intended)

Funder: Highland Council, Dingwall History Society and Society of Antiquaries of Scotland

OJT Surveys, 2011


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