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'Sithean Harraig'

Broch (Iron Age)(Possible), Cairn (Period Unassigned)

Site Name 'Sithean Harraig'

Classification Broch (Iron Age)(Possible), Cairn (Period Unassigned)

Alternative Name(s) Shean Harraig; Suthean Harraig; Scotscalder

Canmore ID 7647

Site Number ND05NE 30

NGR ND 0964 5686

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


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

  • Council Highland
  • Parish Halkirk
  • Former Region Highland
  • Former District Caithness
  • Former County Caithness

Archaeology Notes

ND05NE 30 0964 5686.

(ND 0964 5686) Sithean Harraig (NR)

OS 6" map, Caithness, 2nd ed., (1907)

Broch, Sithean Harraig: On the E side of the road to Thurso, about 1/2 mile N of Scotscalder station, are the remains of a broch known as 'Shean Harraig'. The mound covering the ruin has been quarried into to some extent on the S side. It has a diameter over all of about 76ft and an elevation of 8ft. No measureable part of the structure is exposed. RCAHMS 1911, visited 1910.

A flat-topped, mutilated mound of turf-covered stones. About 22.0m in diameter and 2.5m high; the top of the mound is about 9.0m in diameter. A small excavation on top reveals a mass of stone, and nearby are two small stones set on edge. It is possible that this is a cairn rather than a broch.

Visited by OS (W D J) 9 April 1962.

(ND 0964 5686) Sithean Harraig (NAT) Cairn (NR)

OS 6" map, (1963)

Sithean Harraig as described by previous OS field surveyor is confirmed as a cairn rather than a broch. It occupies a prominent yet non-defensive position on a ridge, and retains the classic bowl-shape, though now somewhat truncated. There is no trace of wall faces (of a broch) and no evidence of outer defences.

Visited by OS (N K B) 16 September 1981

'Broch'/cairn, 'Suthean Harraig'. Diameter: 25m. Circular heather-covered mound with a flat top, diameter 8m. There is no evidence of a kerb or other structurral traces.

R J Mercer, NMRS MS/828/19, 1995.


Publication Account (2007)

ND05 1 SCOTSCALDER ('Sithean Harraig')

ND/0964 5686

Possible broch or cairn in Halkirk, Caithness, consisting of a mound of turf-covered stones about 23.2m (76ft) in dia-meter. No masonry is exposed and the site is more likely to be a cairn [1].

Sources: 1. NMRS site no. ND 05 NE 30: 2. RCAHMS 1911a, 35, no. 113: 3. Swanson (ms) 1985, 647.

E W MacKie 2007


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