Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Delachuper, farmstead 310m north of

A Scheduled Monument in Aboyne, Upper Deeside and Donside, Aberdeenshire

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Latitude: 57.158 / 57°9'28"N

Longitude: -3.2113 / 3°12'40"W

OS Eastings: 326826

OS Northings: 808108

OS Grid: NJ268081

Mapcode National: GBR W7.33JS

Mapcode Global: WH6LS.NB0Y

Entry Name: Delachuper, farmstead 310m N of

Scheduled Date: 20 March 2007

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM11502

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Secular: farmstead

Location: Strathdon

County: Aberdeenshire

Electoral Ward: Aboyne, Upper Deeside and Donside

Traditional County: Aberdeenshire


The monument comprises the remains of Badenshilloch, a farmstead that originated in the 18th century and developed over a period that ran into the 19th century. Visible as a series of upstanding walls, banks and other features, the monument lies to the NE of the River Don.

General Roy's map of 1747-55 shows the farmstead as Beinhann, a group of seven buildings next to a road or track. A document of 1796 mentions Badinshalloch's [sic.] rights of pasturage in Glen Ernan. The 1841 census lists five occupants. The Ordnance Survey (OS) First Edition 6'' map of 1869 shows a group of three roofed buildings. The OS Second Edition 6" map (1902-03) shows the buildings unroofed, the farmstead having gone out of use in the intervening years. It is marked un-named on the current 1:10000 map, which depicts one un-roofed building and a yard.

The visible, upstanding remains of the monument comprise five buildings and a stack yard. The buildings range in length from 6 m to 39 m and in width from 2 m to 11 m, within walls up to 1 m thick. Four are sub-rectangular with rounded ends and may represent the earliest phase of settlement on the site. Several associated enclosures remain and these are included in the scheduling.

The area proposed for scheduling comprises three discrete areas (two rectangular and one irregular on plan), to include the remains described and an area around them within which evidence for their construction and use may be expected to survive, as marked in red on the accompanying map. The dashed line running through the northernmost scheduled area on the accompanying map marks a change in vegetation or landform unit and, in its southern portion aligned SW to NE, the position of a track identified on the OS First Edition 6'' map of 1869. No such change or track was evident on the ground at the time of the initial field inspection.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

Cultural Significance

The monument's archaeological and historic significance can be expressed as follows:

Intrinsic characteristics: The monument is a well-preserved example of a pre-Improvement farmstead with upstanding remains dating from the 18th and 19th centuries. Despite some extensive stone robbing, this monument retains the footings of drystone walls and diagnostic architectural features. It includes a partitioned longhouse and seven stack stands. Given the site's current use as pastureland, it is likely that archaeologically significant deposits relating to the construction, use and abandonment of the structures remain in situ.

The site has considerable potential to enhance understanding of the development of farmsteads in the pre-Improvement and improvement period and the daily lives of the people who occupied them. Badenshilloch represents the accumulated remains of repeated building on a single site and therefore has the potential to provide information relating to the improvement process.

Contextual characteristics: The monument is a good representative of a once numerous class and the best surviving example in Corgarff. This farmstead was one of those entitled to use summer grazing in Glen Ernan, presumably in lieu of shielings. Together with the shielings at Meikle Fleuchat and Allt Tobair Fhuair and the pre and post-Improvement farmsteads of Bressachoil, Auchnahaich and Deleva in Glen Ernan, Badenshilloch therefore has the potential to shed light on the regional character of post-medieval settlement and transhumance patterns. The survival of documents relating to these farmstead and shielings at Aberdeen University and elsewhere, and census returns for the period in which they were occupied, enhance this potential. Comparison of the local vernacular architectural features in this area with those on other Scottish historic rural settlement sites may enhance our understanding of regional variation in rural settlement between the medieval period and the 19th century.

Associative characteristics: The monument is the product of pre-Improvement and Improvement agricultural practices. The 1841 census records the farmstead as occupied by a farmer, his wife and their three children. By the time of the Second Edition OS map (1902-3) it has been vacated and is recorded unroofed. It would appear that the associated rig and furrow depicted on Roy's map has been obliterated by modern ploughing, although the land is now pasture.

The Clearances remain a prominent part of Scotland's national consciousness and that of countries to which those who had to leave there homes migrated, notably Canada, USA and Australia. The quality of the surviving documentary evidence means that it is possible for living descendants to identify the farmstead as where their ancestors lived. The sites in Western Strathdon therefore have potential in terms of genealogical tourism as well as academic research and education for schoolchildren and students in the UK.

National Importance

The monument is of national importance because it has an inherent potential to make a significant addition to the understanding of the past, in particular the pre-Improvement and Improvement periods. Its relatively good preservation and the survival of historical records directly related to the monument's occupation enhances this potential. The loss of this example would impede any future ability to understand these issues and the history of Glen Ernan and surrounding area, in particular. The monument also has a place in the national consciousness, given the strong continued interest in the UK and abroad in the rural settlement of the 18th and 19th centuries.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



RCAHMS record the monument as NJ20NE20, farmstead.

Aerial photographs:

C41730 - Tom Ban ' RCAHMS.

C80970/po - Tom Ban - Aberdeen Archaeological Surveys.


1841 Census

Greig M 1994, 'Tom Ban (Strathdon Parish)' DISCOVERY EXCAV SCOT, 26.



Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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