Font Size

100% 150% 200%

Background Colour

Default Contrast
Close Reset

Carlingwark Loch

Crannog(S) (Period Unassigned), Logboat(S)

Site Name Carlingwark Loch

Classification Crannog(S) (Period Unassigned), Logboat(S)

Alternative Name(s) Ash Island; Fir Island

Canmore ID 64674

Site Number NX76SE 8

NGR NX 7600 6100

NGR Description NX c. 7600 6100

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
Canmore Disclaimer. © Copyright and database right 2019.

Toggle Aerial | View on large map

Digital Images

Administrative Areas

  • Council Dumfries And Galloway
  • Parish Kelton
  • Former Region Dumfries And Galloway
  • Former District Stewartry
  • Former County Kirkcudbrightshire

Archaeology Notes

NX76SE 8 c. 7600 6100

For possible fortified island (Fir Island, at NX 7629 6093, see NX76SE 9. For bronze swords and other metalwork found in and around the loch, see NX76SE 11, NX76SE 12, NX76SE 13.

(NX 7629 6107) Ash Island (NAT) Site of Lake Dwelling (NR)

OS 6" map (1946)

In Carlingwark Loch there were four fortified islands, two of them artificially constructed of oak piles. A bronze cauldron (NX76SE 13), a bronze sword (NX76SE 12), canoes and a bronze pan have also been found.

J Stuart 1875

Two artificial islands were found when the loch was drained in 1765. At the same time two dugout canoes, a dam, to maintain the level of the water in the loch, and a planking floor were found.

OSA 1794 (T Halliday); R C Reid 1946

Ash Island is of an artificial nature.


At the time of field investigation Ash Island was largely submerged by the high level of the loch and from the nearest point on the shore of Fir Island it was not possible to discern any artificial features, only the trees and a very little ground being visible.

Visited by OS (RDL) 13 February 1963.

The Statistical Account notes the discovery at 'several places' in Carlingwark Loch of 'canoes' which had been 'hollowed...with fire'. The loch is situated in pastoral drumlin country at an altitude of about 45m OD and the boats were probably found either in 1765 when the size of the loch was greatly reduced by the construction of a drainage-canal, or in the following years when much of the lake-bed sediment was taken for agricultural marl. Their fate is not recorded.

Other antiquities found in the loch include Iron Age and Romano-British metalwork and at least one crannog, but there is no evidence to support the 'Celtic' attribution of the boats that Affleck proposes.

In view of the experimental evidence for the ineffectiveness of fire in working large oak timbers these boats may have worked from softwood or (more probably) fire-working may have been suggested on the basis of the mis-interpretation of incipient rot.

Stat. Acct. 1791-9; D Wilson 1851; J Affleck 1912; R C Reid 1944; M MacGregor 1976; R J C Mowat 1996; Information from Mr D Goodburn.


MyCanmore Image Contributions

Contribute an Image

MyCanmore Text Contributions