Ancient Monuments

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Standing stone, 85m west of Malin Court

A Scheduled Monument in Girvan and South Carrick, South Ayrshire

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Latitude: 55.3309 / 55°19'51"N

Longitude: -4.8272 / 4°49'38"W

OS Eastings: 220755

OS Northings: 607738

OS Grid: NS207077

Mapcode National: GBR 41.6BSB

Mapcode Global: WH2QC.T8HK

Entry Name: Standing stone, 85m W of Malin Court

Scheduled Date: 16 November 1993

Last Amended: 19 June 2023

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM5815

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric ritual and funerary: standing stone

Location: Kirkoswald

County: South Ayrshire

Electoral Ward: Girvan and South Carrick

Traditional County: Ayrshire


The monument comprises a standing stone likely to date to the late Neolithic or Bronze Age periods (between 3,800 and 2,500 BC). The stone stands to around 1.6m in height and measures 1m by 0.7m at its base. The standing stone is located on a prominent knoll at around 25m above sea level and has views over the South Ayrshire coast. 

The scheduled area is a cropped circle with a diameter of 10m centred on the standing stone. It is cropped on its north-northeast side where it extends up to but does not include a modern post and wire fence. 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. Standing stones are one of the main sources of evidence for the Neolithic in Scotland and so are important in our understanding of the nature of Scotland's prehistoric society and landscape. The example contributes to our understanding of prehistoric ritual monuments. The monument has the potential to enhance our understanding of ritual and ceremonial activities in the in the Neolithic and Bronze Age periods, and specifically, the beliefs of the people who erected the standing stone and the associated activities carried out in its vicinity

d.   The monument is a particularly good example of a standing stone and is therefore an important representative of this monument type.

e.   The monument has research potential which could significantly contribute to our understanding or appreciation of the past. The form of the monument can be researched, contrasted and compared with other monuments of this type. Additionally, there is the potential for environmental material to survive around the base of the standing stones which could provide information on demographics, land use and environment.

f. The monument makes a significant contribution to our understanding of the historic landscape. The standing stone is an impressive field monument that appears to be in its original position, allowing interpretation of the monument in its original landscape context. It is an important part of the local landscape, and it is likely to have been a focal point from the time of its erection and use onwards.

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 standing stone is of significant size and is likely to stand on or near to its original location. It is heavily weathered with frost cracking running down from its summit. This is similar to weathering of other prehistoric standing stones, notably Aberdour Lodge, standing stone 110m SW of (scheduled monument SM749). This weathering would indicate that the stone has been upright and exposed to the elements for an extended period of time.

In some excavated examples, such as at Carlinwell, Angus (scheduled monument SM4315) or Balnaguard Farm, Perth and Kinross (scheduled monument SM1504), inhumations or cremation burials have been found placed around the standing stone. These remains have included skeletal material as well as urns and grave goods. Surviving environmental remains can help us understand more about the vegetation cover and land use at the time of its erection and then use. Scientific study of this monument when compared to others has the potential to increase our understanding of the distribution and use of prehistoric ritual monuments in the Neolithic and Bronze Age periods.

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

Standing stones are a widespread class of monument across Scotland. There are over 1200 examples recording in the National Record of the Historic Environment, 14 of which are located in South Ayrshire. Many of these are located in prominent, elevated locations. This standing stone is depicted on the 1st Edition Ordnance Survey map (1859) in its present location which strongly suggests that it is in its original location. It is unclear if such stones were erected to be visible from specific directions. However, this example is located on a prominent rise, and it is likely that this stone would have been a significant feature in the landscape for local Neolithic/ Bronze Age communities.

Standing stones are often located by themselves, such as Lyonston (Canmore ID 41670) or Shiel Hill (Canmore ID 62001). Some, however, are associated with prehistoric burial monuments or other stones, such as Blarbuie stone setting (scheduled monument SM5518) or The Thieves (scheduled monument SM1044). While the reasons for these arrangements is unclear it is likely that standing stones served multiple functions, perhaps as symbolic markers of territory, focus for ritual or burials or even as route markers through the surrounding land.

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 the national importance of the monument.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland




Historic Environment Scotland reference number CANMORE ID 40856 (accessed on 05/05/2023).

Local Authority HER Reference WoSAS Pin:5434 (accessed on 05/05/2023).


Ordnance Survey (1857). Ayrshire XLIV.9 (Kirkoswald). Survey date: 1856, Publication date: 1857.

Printed Sources

Ashmore P J (1996). Neolithic and Bronze Age Scotland. B.T Batsford Ltd, London.

Smith, J (1895) Prehistoric man in Ayrshire. London.


Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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