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Bharpa, long cairn 1390m east of Carinish Inn, North Uist

A Scheduled Monument in Beinn na Foghla agus Uibhist a Tuath, Na h-Eileanan Siar

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Coordinates

Latitude: 57.522 / 57°31'19"N

Longitude: -7.2856 / 7°17'8"W

OS Eastings: 83697

OS Northings: 860308

OS Grid: NF836603

Mapcode National: GBR 88DV.9NW

Mapcode Global: WGW3R.16XD

Entry Name: Bharpa, long cairn 1390m E of Carinish Inn, North Uist

Scheduled Date: 20 June 1934

Last Amended: 28 February 2000

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM891

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric ritual and funerary: chambered cairn; Secular: shieling

Location: North Uist

County: Na h-Eileanan Siar

Electoral Ward: Beinn na Foghla agus Uibhist a Tuath

Traditional County: Inverness-shire

Description

The monument comprises a Neolithic chambered tomb of the so-called Hebridean group, an area in which there is evidence of associated domestic activity, and other structures which have been built on the site in more modern times. It is situated in rough grazings to the E of Carinish, on a slight rise overlooking the strait between North Uist and Benbecula, in an area which contains many other chambered cairns as well as a stone circle.

The cairn is a long cairn (about 50m in length), aligned from WNW to ESE, which tapers in width towards its W end. Although much robbed (the present height is a maximum of about 2.4m) and encroached upon in part by peat, it can be seen that its perimeter was defined by a kerb of stones which increase in height towards the E end. Here the cairn is up to 26m wide. There appears to have been a wide, shallow rectangular forecourt; a horn-work is still visible on the SE side. The chamber would have been entered from this forecourt, and is indicated by six tall slabs, now largely buried.

Survey and excavation in the vicinity of the cairn revealed evidence of activity during the Neolithic, Bronze and Iron Ages. A large, sub-peat enclosure was built soon after the peat began to form. Part of this is still exposed in a cutting to the N of the cairn, but its full extent was traced by probing in the late 1980s. The scheduling also includes a number of other structures which are either built into or from the cairn material. The forecourt of the cairn contains a number of such structures, of unknown date, within an enclosing stone and earth bank which springs from the horns of the cairn.

The monument was first scheduled in 1934, but an inadequate area was included to protect all the archaeological remains, both visible and sub-peat; the present scheduling rectifies this.

The area to be scheduled is rectangular on plan and measures 160m from WNW to ESE by 95m transversely, to include the monument and an area around in which remains associated with its construction and use may survive, as marked in red on the accompanying map extract.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Sources

Bibliography
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Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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