Ancient Monuments

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Enclosed settlement, 480m south east of Stonefieldhill Farm

A Scheduled Monument in Midlothian South, Midlothian

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Latitude: 55.8293 / 55°49'45"N

Longitude: -3.112 / 3°6'43"W

OS Eastings: 330440

OS Northings: 660120

OS Grid: NT304601

Mapcode National: GBR 61Q1.26

Mapcode Global: WH6T7.5RC2

Entry Name: Enclosed settlement, 480m SE of Stonefieldhill Farm

Scheduled Date: 13 November 1995

Last Amended: 17 July 2023

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM6258

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric domestic and defensive: settlement

Location: Carrington

County: Midlothian

Electoral Ward: Midlothian South

Traditional County: Midlothian


The monument consists of the remains of an enclosed settlement dating to the Late Bronze or Iron Age. It has been recorded as cropmarks on aerial photographs and survives as buried deposits below the ploughsoil. The monument is located below the summit of a low hill at around 175m above sea level. 

The monument is situated on a level platform below the crest of a slight rise in a cultivated field. It is a sub-circular enclosure around 100m maximum diameter defined by a broad ditch which measures up to 7m across. Two entrances with expanded terminals are visible on the northwest and southeast sides. Within the enclosure. there is an area of darker soils visible on aerial photographs. This may indicate an occupation layer.

The scheduled area is circular, measuring 130m in diameter. It includes the remains described above and an area around within which evidence relating to the monument's construction, use and abandonment is expected to survive, as shown in red on the accompanying map.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

The national importance of the monument is demonstrated in the following way(s) (see Designations Policy and Selection Guidance, Annex 1, para 17):

a.  The monument is of national importance because it makes a significant contribution to our understanding or appreciation of the past as an enclosed prehistoric settlement dating to the Late Bronze Age to Iron Age. It adds to our understanding of prehistoric society in eastern Scotland and the function, use and development of enclosed settlements at this time.

b.   The monument retains structural and other physical attributes which make a significant contribution to our understanding of the past. The plan of the monument is clear and understandable through cropmark evidence and there is significant potential for the survival of buried archaeological deposits. The monument can significantly add to our understanding of domestic settlement, agriculture and economy during the Late Bronze or Iron Age.

d.   The monument is a particularly good example of a cropmarked enclosed settlement with potential occupation deposits and is therefore an important representative of this monument type.

e.   The monument has research potential which could significantly contribute to our understanding of the past. Its enclosure ditches and internal area could provide material for carbon dating which when compared with similar monuments could contribute to a better understanding of the chronological development of settlement during this period of Scottish prehistory. Additionally, artefactual and environmental material surviving within these buried features, particularly the ditches and occupation area, could also provide information on diet, society, agricultural practice and local ecology.

Assessment of Cultural Significance

This statement of national importance has been informed by the following assessment of cultural significance:

Intrinsic characteristics (how the remains of a site or place contribute to our knowledge of the past)

The monument was previously identified and designated as a henge monument, however, a recent review of the available aerial imagery has led to its re-interpreted as a later prehistoric settlement. It survives as buried archaeological remains below the ploughsoil and is visible on aerial photography. The settlement is enclosed by a ditch up to 4m in width within which is an area of darker soil which is likely to represent the remains of domestic structures or occupation.

Enclosed settlements are common across Scotland and come in a variety of forms. Some are very large and are enclosed by multiple ditches and may have held many timber roundhouses and housed a large population. Others are much smaller and were only large enough to accommodate a single round house and yard. The vast majority of these would have been agricultural settlements. This monument has an internal diameter of around 85m which is large enough to accommodate more than one roundhouse. The available aerial imagery shows an area of darker soil, likely an occupation layer but it is not sufficiently clear to know if there would be more than one roundhouse present. This site is of a similar size to others in Midlothian such as Enclosed settlement 210m NW of Hardengreen Roundabout (scheduled monument SM6335) and therefore occupies a position between the larger enclosed settlement, often referred to as 'forts' and smaller enclosed settlement which would only have space for a single dwelling.

There is good potential for the survival of buried archaeological features and deposits, including occupation and abandonment debris, artefacts and environmental remains within the monument. Excavations at Whittinghame Tower, enclosure 250m SW of (scheduled monument SM6067) (Haselgrove 2009), Fisher's Road, Port Seton (Canmore IDs: 54931 and 54934) and Brixwold, Dalhousie Mains(Canmore ID: 53609) (Crone and O'Sullivan 1997) have provided evidence of crops such as hulled barley, oats and emmer wheat and artefacts such as a copper and blue glass items, stone tools, decorated stones, saddle querns and pottery. This monument has the potential to add to our understanding of settlement, land-use and environment, diet, and social status of the occupants, as well as the structure of contemporary society and economy. Scientific study of this site would allow us to confirm the date range of the monument any possible development sequence through radiocarbon dating.

Contextual characteristics (how a site or place relates to its surroundings and/or to our existing knowledge of the past)

Enclosed settlements are found throughout Scotland, both as earthwork monuments and cropmarked sites. This monument is a good example of an enclosed settlement with evidence of possible internal occupation. The monument is located on south facing slopes and forms part of a wider archaeological landscape of settlement remains of broadly similar date that are located above the valley of the South Esk.

The settlement may be related to other similar later prehistoric settlements in the area, such as Capielaw, enclosed settlement (scheduled monument SM6266), Enclosed settlement 210m NW of Hardengreen Roundabout (scheduled monument SM6335) and Highwood House, enclosure 800m S of (scheduled monument SM6257). There is potential to study these sites together to better understand their functions within the local communities, settlement hierarchy and possible chronological development in the area. The monument has the potential to enhance and broaden our understanding of prehistoric society and community as well as social organisation, land division and land use.

Associative characteristics (how a site or place relates to people, events, and/or historic and social movements)

There are no known associative characteristics that contribute to this monument's national importance.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



Historic Environment Scotland reference number CANMORE ID 53607 (accessed on 29/05/2023).

Midlothian HER/SMR Reference MEL8508 (accessed on 29/05/2023).

Haselgrove C and McCullagh R (eds. (2000). An Iron Age coastal community in East Lothian: the excavation of two later prehistoric enclosure complexes at Fishers Road, Port Seton, 1994-5, STAR monograph 6. Edinburgh.

Haselgrove C (2009). The Traprain Law Environs Project; Fieldwork and Excavations 2000-2004. Society of Antiquaries of Scotland.

Lelong, O and McGregor, (2007). The Lands of Ancient Lothian, Interpreting the Archaeology of the A1 (Society of Antiquaries of Scotland).

ScARF 2012 Downes J. (ed.) Bronze Age. Scottish Archaeological Research Framework: Society of Antiquaries of Scotland. Available online at (accessed on (23/03/2022).

ScARF 2012 Hunter, F. and Carruthers, M. (eds) Iron Age. Scottish Archaeological Research Framework: Society of Antiquaries of Scotland. Available online at (accessed on 23/03/2022).

Wilson, D.R. (2000). Air Photo Interpretation for Archaeologists. Tempus, Stroud.


Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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