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Broch (Iron Age)(Possible), Cairn (Prehistoric)(Possible)

Site Name Learable

Classification Broch (Iron Age)(Possible), Cairn (Prehistoric)(Possible)

Canmore ID 6715

Site Number NC82SE 3

NGR NC 8949 2403

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


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

  • Council Highland
  • Parish Kildonan
  • Former Region Highland
  • Former District Sutherland
  • Former County Sutherland

Archaeology Notes ( - 1976)

NC82SE 3 8949 2403.

(NC 8949 2403) Enclosure (NR)

OS 6"map, (1962)

The remains of a circular enclosure, alleged to have been a broch (J Anderson 1873 and H Morrison 1883) but so much robbed and overgrown that its true character is indefinite. It measures 78' in diameter over a wall which seems to have been about 19' thick with an entrance in the SE.

(RCAHMS 1911)

The remains of a circular enclosure 15.2m in diameter. It is mutilated and overgrown with heather but it is not a broch as suggested above. It consists of an earth and stone bank 6m broad and 0.6m high with an entrance in the SE. In the interior is a small hut 8m by 6.5m, joining the enclosure on either side of its entrance , and between the west side of the hut and the enclosure bank is a mutilated scooped area.

Visited by OS (W D J) 29 May 1961

This enclosure is sub-oval in plan, measuring internally about 15.0m SW-NE by 12.5m. It has been built up on the NE side giving an exterior height of 2.2m. It is impossible to define the exact nature of the internal features due to a thick bracken cover, and the certainty that quarrying has occurred to provide material for the adjacent township wall of Learable. An old, wasted field wall lying close by to the north is possibly contemporary with the enclosure.

Revised at 1:10,000

Visited by OS (JB) 23 December 1976


Field Visit (6 June 1991)

There is a large stony mound, some 20m in diameter and 2m in height on the downslope side immediately N of the head-dyke of Learable township (NC82SE 20) on sloping ground. The centre of it has been robbed, leaving what appear to be three compartments, but they do not make any coherent sense as a structure. A stony bank runs away from NE side (NC82SE 20.10).

(KILD91 424)

Visited by RCAHMS (PJD) 6 June 1991.

Publication Account (2007)

NC82 3 LEARABLE NC/8949 2403

Possible broch or cairn [1] in Kildonan, Sutherland, now an almost featureless heap of stones [2]. The overall diameter seems to be about 23.8m (78ft) and the wall about 5.80m (19ft) thick; the entrance seems to be on the south-east. The remains are so badly robbed and overgrown that the identity of the building must remain uncertain [2, 3].

Sources: 1. NMRS site no. NC 82 SE 3: 2. RCAHMS 1911a, 107, no. 315: 3. Swanson (ms) 1985, 797: 4. RCAHMS 1993.

E W MacKie 2007


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