Ancient Monuments

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Mill of Boddam, ring ditch and souterrain 190m north east of

A Scheduled Monument in West Garioch, Aberdeenshire

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Latitude: 57.3637 / 57°21'49"N

Longitude: -2.6241 / 2°37'26"W

OS Eastings: 362555

OS Northings: 830535

OS Grid: NJ625305

Mapcode National: GBR M9W8.2LC

Mapcode Global: WH8NC.N5MQ

Entry Name: Mill of Boddam, ring ditch and souterrain 190m NE of

Scheduled Date: 18 October 2006

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM11512

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric domestic and defensive: souterrain, earth-house

Location: Insch

County: Aberdeenshire

Electoral Ward: West Garioch

Traditional County: Aberdeenshire


The monument comprises a souterrain and ring-ditch house of prehistoric date, visible as a cropmark on oblique aerial photographs.

The monument lies in arable farmland, 152m above sea level, on a slight plateau with a stream to the S and SW. It comprises a souterrain that is crescentic on plan (measuring about 9m in diameter) and, on its western side, a ring ditch (about 3.5m in diameter). Souterrains are semi-subterranean structures generally regarded as having been used for storage in later prehistory. Where excavated they have been shown to have been associated with larger, above-ground settlements of buildings that are largely made from timber. The ring-ditch cropmark is evidence of one of these buildings. These buildings can vary in size and construction techniques throughout Scotland. Although it could be a small roundhouse, it is also possible that the cropmark is evidence of internal wear patterns within the house itself and that the structure is considerably larger. The souterrain and ring ditch are, on the basis of present evidence, the most obvious elements of a more extensive unenclosed settlement.

The area proposed for scheduling is circular on plan and comprises the remains described and an area around them within which related material may be expected to be found, as marked in red on the accompanying map extract.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

Cultural Significance

Intrinsic characteristics: The monument has potential to contribute to our understanding of prehistoric settlement and its economy. The condition of the archaeological evidence is likely to be high as the monument probably filled in quickly after it became redundant, preserving any archaeology.

Contextual characteristics: The monument is representative of a type associated with late prehistoric, unenclosed settlements seen throughout Scotland. Although these type of monuments are well documented in the local area in the late 19th century, very few are known to survive. The site itself is probably part of a wider, more extensive settlement as there is evidence of further archaeological features surrounding this site.

National Importance

The monument is of national importance because of its potential to contribute to an understanding of later prehistoric settlement and economy. Many of the souterrains scheduled in the area are standing structures that would have been exposed and cleared in recent history. Since this site was sealed in prehistory, it is likely the archaeological evidence surviving will be undisturbed and in a good state of preservation. The rarity of this type of monument in the local landscape also adds to its importance and is increased by its potential proximity to other contemporaneous archaeological features.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



The monument is recorded by RCAHMS as NJ63SW 217 and the Aberdeenshire Council SMR as NJ63SW0074.

Aerial photographs:

AAS, 2000, NJ63SW0074, Mill of Boddam, AAS/00/10/G24/8.

AAS, 2000, NJ63SW0074, Mill of Boddam, AAS/00/10/G24/9.

AAS, 2000, NJ63SW0074, Mill of Boddam, AAS/00/10/G24/11.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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