Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Kennel Mount cairn, Culzean Country Park

A Scheduled Monument in Girvan and South Carrick, South Ayrshire

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Latitude: 55.3511 / 55°21'4"N

Longitude: -4.7752 / 4°46'30"W

OS Eastings: 224145

OS Northings: 609853

OS Grid: NS241098

Mapcode National: GBR 43.4YKS

Mapcode Global: WH2Q6.MR9M

Entry Name: Kennel Mount cairn, Culzean Country Park

Scheduled Date: 4 March 2002

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM10359

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric ritual and funerary: kerb cairn

Location: Kirkoswald

County: South Ayrshire

Electoral Ward: Girvan and South Carrick

Traditional County: Ayrshire


The monument comprises a cairn of prehistoric date, visible as a low mound. Cairns of this type are funerary monuments dating to the Neolithic and Bronze Age (around 2000 to 800 BC).

The monument is situated on a ridge within a cleared coniferous plantation at about 99m OD. The monument would have been clearly visible as the highest point in the surrounding landscape. Limited excavations in 1996 and 1998 revealed the presence of a low stone cairn, with apparent secondary deposits indicating a complex sequence of construction and use. Artefacts recovered included struck flint pebbles, pot sherds and burnt bone, together with an intact Yorkshire Vase-type Food Vessel, dating to the first half of the second millennium BC. The cairn material has been partially disturbed by the planting of trees and landscaping.

The primary cairn is oval in shape, measuring c.6.6m N-S by 13m E-W by 0.35m high. The eastern half is best preserved, where it is defined by an arc of low kerb stones, with a concentric and curvilinear slot present immediately to the E of the kerb. Secondary deposits, including the Food Vessel, appear to have been added to the eastern, southern and western sides of the cairn, extending it in size to c.19m N-S by 15m E-W. The secondary deposits to the S and W appear to have suffered from later stone-robbing and disturbance.

The area proposed for scheduling comprises the remains described and an area around them within which related material may be expected to survive. It is circular in shape, measuring 40m in diameter, centred on the cairn, as marked in red on the accompanying map.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

The monument is of national importance because of its potential to contribute to an understanding of prehistoric funerary and ritual practices. Its importance is increased by the presence of well preserved artefacts, and by the complex history of re-use of the site.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



RCAHMS records the monument as NS 20 NW 34.


Ewart, G. (1996) 'Culzean Castle (Kirkoswald parish), garden features and prehistoric cairn', Discovery and Excavation, Scotland, 1996, 97.

Ewart, G. and Dunn, A. (1998) 'Culzean Castle (Kirkoswald parish), excavation and survey', Discovery and Excavation, Scotland, 1998, 87.

Ewart, G. (1996) 'Culzean Castle and Gardens. Excavations 1996: 2nd September 1998', 3-4, unpublished report, Kirkdale Archaeology.

Ewart, G. (1998) 'Culzean Castle: Kennel Mount Cairn. Archaeological Excavation, September 1998, Draft Report 22/12/98' unpublished report, Kirkdale Archaeology.

Ewart, G. (1999) 'The Kennel Mount Cairn and Water Feature. Archaeological Recording and Survey, 26 May 1999' unpublished draft report, Kirkdale Archaeology.

Sharman, P. (1999) 'Kennel Mount, Culzean Castle (Kirkoswald parish), survey', Discovery and Excavation, Scotland, 1999, 81.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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