Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Deskryshiel, hut circle 680m south east of

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

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Latitude: 57.176 / 57°10'33"N

Longitude: -2.9756 / 2°58'32"W

OS Eastings: 341110

OS Northings: 809890

OS Grid: NJ411098

Mapcode National: GBR WJ.1TC4

Mapcode Global: WH7MV.8W8N

Entry Name: Deskryshiel, hut circle 680m SE of

Scheduled Date: 21 March 2007

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM11659

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric domestic and defensive: hut circle, roundhouse

Location: Logie-Coldstone

County: Aberdeenshire

Electoral Ward: Aboyne, Upper Deeside and Donside

Traditional County: Aberdeenshire


The monument comprises an upstanding hut circle with visible evidence suggesting at more than one phase of development. Hut circles are dwellings dating to the later prehistoric period. It lies on the E-facing slope of Birk Hill in an open area of moorland at 370m OD. A dense growth of heather currently obscures much of the monument.

The monument consists of a small hut circle contained concentrically within a larger one. The larger hut circle appears as a sub-circular stony bank approximately 11.5m in diameter with walls approximately 2m wide. The entrance is visible as a gap in the wall in the ENE quadrant. The smaller hut circle appears as a sub-circular stony bank, approximately 1.5m wide and approximately 6.7m in diameter. The monument is located c. 800m to the W of an area of numerous hut circles situated on the lower slopes of Tom Dubh.

The area to be scheduled is circular on plan, centred on the inner hut circle, to include the remains described and an area around in which evidence for 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: The monument is a well-preserved upstanding archaeological site. It is unexcavated and therefore has the potential to provide high quality archaeological evidence of the construction, use and abandonment of later prehistoric dwellings. The constructional development of the site enhances this potential. The structure, orientation and features such as the concentric circular stone banks and a possible entrance common to both inner and outer circles all survive in a good state of preservation.

Contextual characteristics: Hut circles are a relatively common type of later prehistoric settlement site recorded across Strathdon and wider afield in eastern and southern Scotland. This monument is an important example because it displays what we interpret as a development sequence, with the presence of two circular stone banks (outer and inner), unlike more common examples with a single circular bank, or bank and internal ditch arrangement. The monument lies within 800 m of other hut circles which therefore enhances our ability to understand the settlement context of domestic activity on the site.

Associative characteristics: The monument is the product of later prehistoric peoples and demonstrates the dominant type of dwelling in use during the Bronze and Iron Ages in northern Scotland.

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 settlement and economy of Scotland during the Bronze and Iron Ages. Its relatively good preservation, constructional development, and wider landscape context enhance this potential. The loss of this example would affect our ability to understand the Bronze and Iron Ages in this part of Scotland.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



RCAHMS record the monument as NJ40NW 106.



Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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