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Kaims Castle

Fortlet (Roman)

Site Name Kaims Castle

Classification Fortlet (Roman)

Alternative Name(s) Gask Ridge

Canmore ID 25365

Site Number NN81SE 1

NGR NN 8608 1295

NGR Description Centred NN 8608 1295

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number AC0000807262. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council Perth And Kinross
  • Parish Ardoch
  • Former Region Tayside
  • Former District Perth And Kinross
  • Former County Perthshire

Archaeology Notes

NN81SE 1 centred 8608 1295.

(NN 8608 1295) Kaims Castle (NAT) ROMAN FORTLET (R)

OS 6" map (1958)

Kaims Castle, though probably also used for signalling, may be classified as a fortlet rather than a signal station. It consists of a nearly square inner enclosure and an outer enclosing ditch of almost circular plan with a counterscarp bank (see plan by Christison). There is a single entrance, approached by a paved causeway from the Roman road. Excavations by Christison in 1900 showed the interior also to be paved, but no post-holes of a tower were found nor any traces of the other timber buildings which must have stood within.

Direct evidence of date is lacking - the only finds were 'two shapeless lumps of lead'. The plan is not that of the normal Antonine road-fortlet and in fact finds analogies in the north Devon sites of Old Burrow and Martinhoe recently shown by Lady Fox to belong to the 1st century. Its probable relationship to the Ardoch signal post, also an early feature, again suggests a Flavian date, though an Antonine reoccupation is not impossible.

K A Steer 1964; D Christison 1901

Generally as previously described and as planned by Christison.

Surveyed at 1:2500.

Visited by OS (WDJ) 18 May 1967.

NN 8605 1285 (centred on) A watching brief was conducted on the digging of foundation pits for a small wind turbine, on a glacial mound just south of the Roman fortlet of Kaimes (or Kaims) Castle. No evidence of early activity was found. The work was carried out on 9th August 2007 and was given the site code BC02.

David Bowler (SUAT Ltd), 12 November 2007.


Publication Account (1987)

This fortlet was probably a forward post for the fort of Ardoch (no. 79) on the line of the road between Ardoch and Strageath. The rampart of the fortlet (some 21 m by 22.5 m internally) still stands 1 m in height within two outer ditches and an outer counterscarp bank. Although the fortlet was excavated in 1900, at the same time as several of the Gask Ridge stations (no. 81), no traces of internal structures were revealed and only areas of paving were discovered.

Information from ‘Exploring Scotland’s Heritage: Fife and Tayside’, (1987).


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