Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Tower of Johnston,cairn and tower

A Scheduled Monument in Mearns, Aberdeenshire

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Latitude: 56.8133 / 56°48'48"N

Longitude: -2.4492 / 2°26'57"W

OS Eastings: 372672

OS Northings: 769182

OS Grid: NO726691

Mapcode National: GBR X6.2HS1

Mapcode Global: WH8R5.B0YN

Entry Name: Tower of Johnston,cairn and tower

Scheduled Date: 15 August 1996

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM6435

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric ritual and funerary: cairn (type uncertain); Secular: tower

Location: Garvock

County: Aberdeenshire

Electoral Ward: Mearns

Traditional County: Kincardineshire


The monument comprises the substantial remains of a Bronze Age burial cairn, 29m in diameter and over 2m in height.

Its site is very prominent, and, in the 19th century, was chosen as the site for the Tower of Johnston, a hollow tower c. 10m high, with an internal spiral staircase and a crenellated platform on the top.

The area to be scheduled measures 80m in diameter, centred on the cairn, to include the cairn, the entire structure of the Tower of Johnston, and an area around in which burials or other traces of activity associated with the cairn may survive. The area is marked in red on the accompanying map extract.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

The cairn is of national importance as a very substantial and largely undisturbed burial site ' the Tower seems to have been built onto its upper surface ' which preserves the characteristics of its type very well. The cairn may be expected to contain important information about prehistoric ritual and funerary practices. The cairn has additional importance as one of a group of hill-top cairns in the area.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



RCAHMS records the monument as NO 76 NW 2.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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