Ancient Monuments

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Druid Temple Farm, chambered cairn and stone circle 230m WSW of

A Scheduled Monument in Inverness South, Highland

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Latitude: 57.4493 / 57°26'57"N

Longitude: -4.1927 / 4°11'33"W

OS Eastings: 268515

OS Northings: 842015

OS Grid: NH685420

Mapcode National: GBR J901.469

Mapcode Global: WH4GP.K1P2

Entry Name: Druid Temple Farm, chambered cairn and stone circle 230m WSW of

Scheduled Date: 27 April 1964

Last Amended: 9 March 2007

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM2417

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric ritual and funerary: chambered cairn

Location: Inverness and Bona

County: Highland

Electoral Ward: Inverness South

Traditional County: Inverness-shire


The monument comprises a Clava-type passage grave of prehistoric date, visible as a denuded cairn and stone circle. It lies within a small level area in a patch of woodland, at around 130 m above sea level, on the SE side of the River Ness. The monument was first scheduled in 1964 but an inadequate area was included to protect all archaeological remains; the present scheduling rectifies this.

The kerb of the cairn is almost complete and virtually fully exposed, enclosing a roughly circular area around 13-14 m in diameter. The entrance to the passage is located on the S side. A circle of 10 stones, five of which remain upright, surrounds the cairn, between 3.5-5.3 m from the kerb.

The area to be scheduled is circular on plan, centred on the centre of the cairn, to include the remains described and an area around in which evidence relating to their construction and use may survive, as marked in red on the accompanying map.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

Cultural Significance

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

Intrinsic characteristics: From the excavation of related monuments we now understand that the remains associated with such cairns can include stone platforms enclosed by a circle or 'kerb' of stones, larger surrounding stone circles and rubble banks or 'rays' joining them as well as other features, and that they have a complex history of development. Despite the erosion or robbing out that may have reduced much of the body of the monument, the characteristic structural features that define this class of monument, remain well preserved. It is also likely to seal information about the prehistoric environment that existed at the time of its construction and use. The monument therefore has a good potential to contribute to future understanding of Early Bronze-Age funerary and ritual practices.

Contextual characteristics: The monument is a good example of a Clava passage grave, a distinctive and rare type of cairn found mainly to the S and E of Inverness along the Nairn and Spey valleys, and along the shore of the Moray Firth. Examples generally include components of stone circles, ring cairns and passage graves.

Associative characteristics: It is the view of most prehistorians that there was an intimate relationship between the religious beliefs expressed by monuments such as this, the surrounding landscape and the movements of the main astronomical bodies. This astronomical link continues to generate considerable interest today.

National Importance

This monument is of national importance because it represents a rare and regionally distinctive class of Early Bronze-Age monument that can help us to understand burial and ritual practices in NE Scotland and their relationship to what is happening elsewhere in the British Isles. It retains the field characteristics of its kind to a marked degree. The loss of, or damage to, the monument would seriously diminish the capacity of the class to contribute to our understanding of prehistoric Scotland, as well as the landscape it sits in.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



RCAHMS record the monument as NH64SE 23.


Bradley R 2000, THE GOOD STONES: A NEW INVESTIGATION OF THE CLAVA CAIRNS, Society of Antiquaries of Scotland monograph series No. 17, Edinburgh, 145, 146, 186.

Burl H A W 1976, THE STONE CIRCLES OF THE BRITISH ISLES, London and New Haven, 164, 359.

Cameron D 1882, 'Notice of the Ancient circular dwellings, hill forts, and burial cairns of Strathnairn', PROC SOC ANTIQ SCOT 16, 293.

Fraser J 1884, 'Descriptive notes on the stone circles of Strathnairn and neighbourhood of Inverness', PROC SOC ANTIQ SCOT 18, 329, 354-6.

Henshall A S 1963, THE CHAMBERED TOMBS OF SCOTLAND, Edinburgh, Vol. 1, 375-6, INV 30.

Lisowski F P 1958, 'Cremations from the Culdoich, Leys and Kinchyle sites', PROC SOC ANTIQ SCOT 89, 83-4, 88-90.

Piggott S 1956, 'Excavations in passage-graves and ring-cairns of the Clava group, 1952-3', PROC SOC ANTIQ SCOT 88, 184-6.

RCAHMS 1979, THE ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITES AND MONUMENTS OF NORTH-EAST INVERNESS, INVERNESS DISTRICT, HIGHLAND REGION, The Archaeological Sites and Monuments of Scotland series No. 8, 9, No. 20, Edinburgh: Society of Antiquaries of Scotland.

Thom A 1967a, MEGALITHIC SITES IN BRITAIN, Oxford, 68-9, 137, 143 B7/18.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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