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Eilean Fraoch, Loch Avich

Crannog (Period Unassigned)

Site Name Eilean Fraoch, Loch Avich

Classification Crannog (Period Unassigned)

Canmore ID 23171

Site Number NM91SW 2

NGR NM 9211 1418

Datum OSGB36 - NGR

C14 Radiocarbon Dating


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

  • Council Argyll And Bute
  • Parish Kilchrenan And Dalavich
  • Former Region Strathclyde
  • Former District Argyll And Bute
  • Former County Argyll

Archaeology Notes

NM91SW 2 9211 1418.

100m S of Eilean Fraoch.

RCAHMS 1983.


Field Visit (2003)

NM 9211 1418 This site exploits a large bedrock reef c 85m due SW of the entirely natural island, Eilean Fraoch. The site consists of a large boulder mound, 40 x 32m at its base, with a dry area at summer water level measuring 14 x 20m. From the base of the site to its highest point is over 3m. The island is located 65m from the closest point on the shore.

The dry area of the site is supported by a revetment wall, which retains the main grass and tree-covered boulder mound visible above water. This revetment survives best at the SW corner of the site, where it may also have acted as a breakwater. Stone structures have been constructed on this dry area, and in one place on the E side of the island this walling survives to a height of c 1.5m. The size and shape of these structures could not be established without excavation, though walling is visible in several places around the dry areas of the island. It seems likely that these stone structures are secondary to the main boulder mound, since they utilise only a small proportion of the total area of the site. A stone-built causeway, c 1 x 6m, connects the raised area of the stone mound to a raised area of bedrock at the SW extremity of the site. There is no causeway between the site and the shore or Eilean Fraoch.

Much of the site below water consists of gravel and mica sand, protruding from which, on the E side of the site, are very well-preserved timber and organic deposits of bracken, woodchips and hazelnuts. One 30 x 10cm timber, probably alder and displaying tool facets at both ends, was noted at the SE corner of the site. Organic deposits appear to survive across the site and are visible in places beneath 10-20cm of inorganic sand and silt. Large angular and sub-angular boulders, averaging 0.6m in diameter, protect the majority of the site.

Full report has been lodged with the NMRS.

Sponsors: Dr J N Marshall (Isle of Bute) Memorial Fund, CBA Challenge Funding, University of Nottingham.

M G Cavers 2003.


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