Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Ironshill, settlement and enclosures 80m WSW of

A Scheduled Monument in Arbroath East and Lunan, Angus

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Latitude: 56.6414 / 56°38'28"N

Longitude: -2.5354 / 2°32'7"W

OS Eastings: 367263

OS Northings: 750079

OS Grid: NO672500

Mapcode National: GBR VW.QP4M

Mapcode Global: WH8RX.0BZH

Entry Name: Ironshill, settlement and enclosures 80m WSW of

Scheduled Date: 9 May 1994

Last Amended: 16 January 2015

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM5980

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric domestic and defensive: hut circle, roundhouse

Location: Inverkeilor

County: Angus

Electoral Ward: Arbroath East and Lunan

Traditional County: Angus


The monument is the remains of an unenclosed settlement dating to between 1800 BC and AD 400, and two adjacent enclosures dating to between 500 BC and AD 1750. The settlement and enclosures lie buried beneath the ploughsoil and are visible as cropmarks captured on oblique aerial photographs. The unenclosed settlement is represented by the remains of at least six roundhouses, ranging in diameter from at least 8m to at least 14m. The enclosures lie to the S and SE of the settlement. They are similar in shape and size, enclosing areas measuring around 28m by 26m and 28m by 28m, and are defined by ditches about 1m wide. The monument lies at about 20m OD on undulating farmland immediately S of the S terrace of the Lunan Water.

The scheduled area is irregular on plan to include the remains described above and an area around them within which evidence relating to the monument's construction, use and abandonment is expected to survive, as shown in red on the accompanying map. On the N and NE sides, the scheduled area extends up to but excludes the post-and-wire fences that enclose the field. The monument was first scheduled in 1994, but the scheduled area did not include all the nationally important remains: the present amendment rectifies this.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

The monument is of national importance because of its potential to make a significant addition to knowledge and understanding of rural settlement in lowland Scotland. It is a rare example of two ditched enclosures surviving in close proximity to several unenclosed roundhouses, some partially scooped into the ground. It offers high potential to compare settlement form and character over a long time period. The monument's importance is enhanced by its association with the wider archaeological landscape of unenclosed settlements and enclosures in the lower Lunan Valley. This landscape forms an important concentration of evidence for social and economic change in later prehistoric and medieval Scotland. Our understanding of the distribution and character of later prehistoric settlements would be diminished if this monument was to be lost or damaged.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



RCAHMS records the monument as NO65SE 33. The Angus Sites and Monuments Record reference is NO65SE0033.


RCAHMS Aerial Photographs B5386, C72246, DP081075

McGill, C 2003, 'The excavation of a palisaded enclosure and associated structures at Ironshill East, near Inverkeilor, Angus', Taysife and Fife Archaeol Jour 9, 14-33.

Pollock, D 1997, 'The excavation of Iron Age buildings at Ironshill, Inverkeilor, Angus', Proc Soc Antiq Scot 127, 339-358.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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