Ancient Monuments

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Gartnagreanoch, chambered cairn, Knapdale

A Scheduled Monument in Mid Argyll, Argyll and Bute

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Latitude: 56.0551 / 56°3'18"N

Longitude: -5.5509 / 5°33'3"W

OS Eastings: 178996

OS Northings: 690377

OS Grid: NR789903

Mapcode National: GBR DDPQ.057

Mapcode Global: WH0J8.P2XF

Entry Name: Gartnagreanoch, chambered cairn, Knapdale

Scheduled Date: 12 December 2001

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM10342

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric ritual and funerary: chambered cairn

Location: North Knapdale

County: Argyll and Bute

Electoral Ward: Mid Argyll

Traditional County: Argyllshire


The monument comprises a Neolithic chambered cairn of the Clyde type, sited immediately to the south of a forestry track at Gartnagreanoch, Knapdale.

The cairn consists of an oval mound, measuring 14m by 8m and standing about 1m high, with a concave forecourt at its NE end. The forecourt has been infilled by material extending 3.5m in front of the facade, and lying about 0.4m deep. The facade survives as four upright stones, with the two central stones (1.7m and 0.8m in height) forming an entrance portal into the original burial chamber of the cairn. Two additional stones are set immediately behind these portal stones, forming a double portal.

The main burial chamber of the cairn, accessed from the portal, measures 1.05m by 0.45m internally, with a capstone. The cairn was subject to limited excavation (confined to examination of the main chamber and the facade area) in 1929, when the main chamber was found to contain no remains, but a second cist was found within the blocking material in the forecourt. This also produced no remains.

The area to be scheduled is irregular in plan, measuring a maximum of 34m along its long axis (ENE by WSW) and 20m transversely, to include the cairn and an area around it in which remains relating to its construction and use may be found, as marked in red on the accompanying map extract. The modern fence line along its southern side is not included in the scheduling.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

The monument is of national importance as a chambered cairn of the Neolithic period, which are not common in the Knapdale area. Despite some limited excavation in 1929, it retains the potential to provide information about ritual and funerary practices of the early prehistoric period, and environmental data from soils which may be buried below the structure of the cairn.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



RCAHMS records the monument as NR 79 SE 8.


Campbell, M. and Sandeman, M. (1964) 'Mid Argyll: an archaeological survey', Proc Soc Antiq Scot, vol. 95, 10, No. 53.

Collolly, R. (2000) 'Gartnagreenach, Achnamara, Argyll and Bute (North Knapdale parish), watching brief', Discovery Excav Scot, vol. 1, 18.

Craw, J. H. (1930) 'Excavations at Dunadd and at other sites on the Poltalloch Estates, Argyll', Proc Soc Antiq Scot, vol. 64, 140-1.

Henshall, A. S. (1972) The chambered tombs of Scotland, vol. 2, Edinburgh, 342, No. ARG 25.

RCAHMS (1988) The Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland. Argyll: an inventory of the monuments volume 6: Mid-Argyll and Cowal, prehistoric and early historical monuments, Edinburgh, 46-7, No. 16 Plan, 47.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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