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Carn Mor

Field System (Period Unassigned)

Site Name Carn Mor

Classification Field System (Period Unassigned)

Canmore ID 14998

Site Number NH84NE 11

NGR NH 856 462

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
© Copyright and database right 2017.

Administrative Areas

  • Council Highland
  • Parish Cawdor
  • Former Region Highland
  • Former District Nairn
  • Former County Nairn

Archaeology Notes

NH84NE 11 856 462.

(Area centred NH 854 461) Field clearance (Visible on RAF air photograph RAF/F21/58/RAF/1116: 0127-9; flown 8 May 1953). A series of enclosures lies on a terrace at NH 8523 4572 accompanied by a continuation of this clearance, and by probably 18th - 19th century cultivation (visible on RAF air photographs 106G/Scot/UK/169: 2022-3; flown 26 August 1946). What may be hut circles occur at NH 8584 4640, NH 8569 4620, NH 8552 4608, and NH 8537 4590 (visible on RAF air photographs 106G/Scot/UK/169: 5382-3; flown 26 August 1946).

Centred at NH 856 462: A field system greatly obscured by peat and heather, and encroached upon by rig and furrow cultivation. It comprises stone clearance heaps and occasional lynchets and is best defined in the NW where there are also traces of stone walls, but it is too obscured to identify measurable cultivation plots. No hut circles were seen. The marks noted on air photographs are vegetation marks.

Visited by OS (A A) 11 February 1971.

This extensive group of small cairns is situated on the top of Carn Mor.

RCAHMS 1978, visited April 1978.


Field Walking (10 January 2011 - 23 February 2011)

NH 8486 4604 (centred on) A walkover survey was carried out 10 January–23 February 2011 ahead of proposed tree planting at Gleneoullie. Extensive areas of Bronze Age / Iron Age field clearance were overlaid by medieval or post-medieval peat cuttings. On the western end of Carn Mor, within a fenced enclosure, the footings of two post-medieval houses were surrounded by rig and furrow. These appear to also overlie evidence of Bronze Age/Iron Age farming activity. Three buildings were recorded just outside the survey area at NH 850 468, NH 8477 5651 and NH 845 464. The following sites were recorded in the survey area:

NH 8396 4620 Buildings and quarry pit; NH 8461 4618 (centred on) field clearance cairns; NH 84620 45670 kerbed cairn; NH 84490 45840 hut circles and field systems; NH 849 455 (centred on) Bronze Age/Iron Age features overlain by houses; NH 849 455 (centred on) hut circles and field systems; NH 840 454 house; NH 85010 45640 house; NH 84940 45560 house and NH 854 461 (centred on) field cairns.

The northern slopes of the two hills are apparently clear of archaeological features, but the flatter top of Carn Mor and the E side of Creag Daimh are not. The longhouse and extensive rig and furrow fields on Carn Mor (NH 849 455) are interesting, as this is an exposed hilltop location nearly 260m above sea level. The rig and furrow must have been in use over quite a long period, as in some places the ridges have merged into wider strips. It was not possible to clarify the full extent of the rig and furrow, which extended into the surrounding heather, but there appear to be indications of Bronze/Iron Age hut circles and field clearance cairns underlying it. As the hilltop has a large number of archaeological features it has been recommended that the area should be cleared of heather, the features marked and protected by 5–10m buffer zones, and the area planted with native broadleaved woodland.

Another area of Bronze Age/Iron Age fields lies on the E slopes of Creag an Daimh. The heather in the area has been burnt, which made it easier to determine the extent of the features. It has been recommended that these features should be marked and protected during planting of broadleaved woodland. The footings of several medieval or post-medieval buildings, recorded on lower ground towards the burn, should be protected with by a buffer zone of 20m during the planting of conifers.

Archive: Highland HER and RCAHMS

Sponsor: Cawdor Forestry

Highland Archaeology Services 2011


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