Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Chicken Head,chapel 600m east of

A Scheduled Monument in Sgire an Rubha, Na h-Eileanan Siar

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Latitude: 58.1814 / 58°10'53"N

Longitude: -6.2411 / 6°14'27"W

OS Eastings: 150776

OS Northings: 929240

OS Grid: NB507292

Mapcode National: GBR B7Z3.83T

Mapcode Global: WGY37.3MBF

Entry Name: Chicken Head,chapel 600m E of

Scheduled Date: 17 March 1992

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM5333

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Ecclesiastical: chapel

Location: Stornoway

County: Na h-Eileanan Siar

Electoral Ward: Sgire an Rubha

Traditional County: Ross-shire


The monument consists of the remains of a chapel of Early Mediaeval date situated near the coast where a stream flows over the edge of a cliff. The site is known in Gaelic as "Tigh an t-Sagairt" (The Priest's House) or "Uaithe nighean an t-Sagairt" (the grave of the priest's daughter). The footings of the single chambered oblong chapel are no more than 0.5m high. It is orientated WNW and ESE, measuring 6.6m by 5.1m externally over walls 1.2-1.6m thick.

The walls are well built of large roughly dressed stones. Surrounding the chapel are the remains of a rectangular wall of turf and stone. The wall is well defined in the S (15.5m from the chapel) and E (23.5m) where it runs uphill to end at a rock outcrop. The wall is obscured in the W where later sheiling huts have utilised its material. The edge of the stream bank, where it forms the boundary of the enclosure, has been built up with earth and stones.

The area to be scheduled is irregular measuring a maximum of 50m E-W by 50m N-S, the N boundary running parallel to the modern fence cutting through the site, the SW boundary defined by the stream, as shown in red on the accompanying map. The fabric of the modern fence is excluded from scheduling.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

The monument is of national importance because it is a good example of a small, Early Medieval Christian establishment which may provide evidence relating to the material and spiritual lives of the associated community.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



RCAHMS records the monument as NB 52 NW 1.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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