Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Roer Water,house 300m east of north west end of loch

A Scheduled Monument in Shetland North, Shetland Islands

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Latitude: 60.5613 / 60°33'40"N

Longitude: -1.3873 / 1°23'14"W

OS Eastings: 433697

OS Northings: 1186576

OS Grid: HU336865

Mapcode National: GBR Q0XT.R1Q

Mapcode Global: XHD15.BSKX

Entry Name: Roer Water,house 300m E of NW end of loch

Scheduled Date: 28 June 1994

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM6029

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric domestic and defensive: house

Location: Northmaven

County: Shetland Islands

Electoral Ward: Shetland North

Traditional County: Shetland


The monument consists of the remains of a prehistoric house, somewhat altered by later rebuilding, in a small valley in deep peat to the N of Roer Water. The remains were revealed by peat clearance and limited excavation in 1902.

The monument, located at over 110m above sea-level on the barren moors of North Roe, consists of the ruined walls of a small house built of granite blocks. It is an irregular oval with two side-cells, one of which was lintelled. To the N of the remains is a cicular shelter, itself now ruined, built out of the remains of the prehistoric structure.

The entrance was on the SE side, facing the nearby loch, but has been overlain by a later shelter. There are slight traces of walls running under the edges of the surrounding peat, which may represent contemporary fields.

The area to be scheduled is irregular, bounded on the SW by the shore of the loch. It measures a maximum of 70m NE-SW by 45m, to include the house and an area around it in which traces of activities associated with its construction and use may survive, as marked in red on the accompanying map.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

The monument is of national importance as an example of extremely marginal prehistoric settlement, which has the potential, through excavation and analysis, to provide important information about the nature and economic basis of life at the limits of prehistoric settlement.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



RCAHMS records the monument as HU 38 NW 3.


Munro, R. and Abercromby, J (1904) Notes on primitive stone structures of the beehive type, discovered by R C Haldane, Esq., in the north of Shetland', Proc Soc Antiq Scot, Vol. 38, 551-7.

RCAHMS (1946) Inventory of Orkney and Shetland, 92-3, No. 1356.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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