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Kirk O' Muir

Cemetery (Medieval), Chapel (Medieval)

Site Name Kirk O' Muir

Classification Cemetery (Medieval), Chapel (Medieval)

Canmore ID 45979

Site Number NS78SW 1

NGR NS 7007 8401

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


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

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

Archaeology Notes

NS78SW 1 7007 8401.

(NS 7007 8401) Kirk o' Muir (NR) (Site of)

OS 6" map (1958)

A small graveyard adjoins the abandoned farm buildings of Kirk o' Muir. The earliest decipherable date, on a recumbent slab, is 1695. "K. of Moore" is shown on Pont's map of the early 17th century, but Edgar's map, surveyed in 1745, marks it as "Ruins". A chapel, dedicated to St Mary, appears to have been founded here about the middle of the 15th century, and to have stood for about 200 years; thereafter the district had no church for about a century.

RCAHMS 1963, visited 1953

This site, generally as described by the RCAHMS, comprises a small disused burial ground containing a number of grave slabs. No further information.

Visited by OS (JLD) 7 May 1953


Field Visit (August 1978)

Kirk o' Muir, Chapel and Burial-ground NS 700 840 NS78SW 1

Nothing now remains of the chapel founded here in the middle of the 15th century and which went out of use about the middle of the 17th century. The earliest decipherable graveslab in the burial-ground is dated 1695.

RCAHMS 1979, visited August 1978

(NSA, viii, Stirling, 323; RCAHMS 1963, p. 160, no. 153)

Excavation (6 September 2017 - 11 September 2017)

A community project, involving volunteers and pupils from local Primary Schools, was carried out at the sites of Sir John de Graham’s Castle and Kirk o’ Muir cemetery. All the works were funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund as part of the Year of Heritage, History and Archaeology.

Metal detecting training at Sir John de Graham’s Castle focused on areas to the east and southeast of the site, outwith the scheduled area. All finds were GPS located, excavated, recorded and subsequently reburied, as all were recent. Additionally, the site was flown using SUA and 3D terrain model and contour plan of the site produced to be used in conjunction with existing HES plan to further enhance the interpretation of the site.

Six trenches were excavated at the site of Kirk o’ Muir cemetery in order to investigate remains of former nineteenth century school building and medieval chapel, both recorded on historical maps and sources. Excavations in Trench 1, located in the southwest corner of the cemetery, confirmed the presence

of the school structure, and uncovered significant accumulation of demolition Excavations in Trenches 2-5 failed to uncover any indisputable evidence for in situ remains of the medieval chapel. Nevertheless, the presence of demolition material, attest to its likely former presence in immediate vicinity. The excavations also uncovered evidence for substantial raising of the ground level in 19th century, which suggests that further, earlier remains, including the foundations of the chapel may lie buried at a considerable depth beneath this made ground.

Investigations outwith the cemetery wall to the north (Trench 4) focused on apparent banked feature, which was found to be a dry-stone dyke, most likely associated with now vanished farmstead of Kirk o’ Muir, also recorded in earlier sources.

In addition, graveyard survey and careful cleaning of some of the gravestones was also undertaken as part of the project, resulting in uncovering the earliest dated grave slab (1651) identified in the cemetery to date.

Finally, the project also involved production of an audio and soundscape diary for both sites to be used for further interpretation and to enhance the project's outcome.

Information from Oasis (connolly1-301468) 23 October 2018


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