Ancient Monuments

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Hurly Hawkin, enclosure, broch and souterrain 80m south of

A Scheduled Monument in Monifieth and Sidlaw, Angus

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Latitude: 56.4825 / 56°28'56"N

Longitude: -3.0861 / 3°5'9"W

OS Eastings: 333207

OS Northings: 732793

OS Grid: NO332327

Mapcode National: GBR VH.5F32

Mapcode Global: WH6Q4.KBN9

Entry Name: Hurly Hawkin, enclosure, broch and souterrain 80m S of

Scheduled Date: 31 August 1953

Last Amended: 9 June 2015

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM140

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric domestic and defensive: broch

Location: Liff and Benvie

County: Angus

Electoral Ward: Monifieth and Sidlaw

Traditional County: Angus


The monument comprises the remains of a double-ditched enclosure, a probable broch and a souterrain. The enclosure was created probably in the late Bronze Age or Iron Age, after 1200 BC. The broch and souterrain date to later in the Iron Age, probably between 300 BC and AD 250. The remains are visible on the ground as low earthworks with some large stones protruding through the surface, some in situ, others in secondary locations. Some sections of the broch wall-face are also visible. The monument stands 80m above sea level on a steep-sided tongue of land between two deeply cut watercourses, in a prominent position overlooking the Carse of Gowrie and the Tay.

Two enclosure ditches separate the site from slightly higher ground to the N. Previous excavations have shown that the inner ditch is 6.5m wide and 2.5m deep and the outer ditch is 5.1m wide and 1.7m deep. The ditches appear to converge as they approach the steep slope to the W. The broch lies within the area demarcated by the ditches. Its wall is consistently 5.7m wide, except to the E where it narrows to 5.1m. The broch interior measures 12.5m in diameter. Evidence for a stone wall-core has not been found and the building may represent a hybrid between a 'true' hollow-walled broch and a defended stone roundhouse. The souterrain reuses the inner enclosure ditch and lies about 7m to the NE of the broch. Its curving shape reflects the layout of the earlier ditch. It measures at least 29m long, about 2m wide, and is at least 1.5m high, with a paved floor, corbelled walls, and a slab roof that has collapsed in places. A narrow, level entrance passage leads about 4m W to open onto a paved courtyard. A layer of fine soil 0.2m thick is known to lie over the paved floor of the souterrain.

The area to be scheduled 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 may survive, as shown in red on the accompanying map. The scheduling excludes the above-ground elements of a post-and-wire fence to allow for its maintenance; the scheduling also excludes a garden shed that lies immediately N of the scheduled area. The monument was first scheduled in 1953, but the documentation did not meet modern standards: the present amendment rectifies this.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

This monument is of national importance because of its potential to make a significant addition to our understanding of the Iron Age in eastern Scotland, particularly the chronology, role and function of enclosures, brochs and souterrains. The survival of remains of a complex enclosure or 'fort', overlain by a lowland broch or massive stone roundhouse and the well-preserved remains of a souterrain, all in one location is very rare. In addition, the souterrain is very rare compared to recently excavated examples because, despite being sealed at the end of its use, it does not appear to have been deliberately backfilled. The enclosure ditches and souterrain in particular can be expected to retain their structural characteristics to a marked degree. Previous excavations suggest that the site retains significant and varied artefact assemblages that can tell us about the daily life of the inhabitants and their trade and exchange contacts and relationships with the Roman Empire. Our understanding of the distribution, character, use and reuse of enclosures, brochs and souterrains would be diminished if this monument was to be lost or damaged.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



RCAHMS record the site as NO33SW 7. The Angus SMR records the site as NO33SW0007.


Jervise, A 1868, 'Account of excavations at Hurley Hawkin, near Dundee', Proc Soc Antiq Scot 6, 210-14.

Macinnes, L 1985, 'Brochs and the Roman occupation of Lowland Scotland', Proc Soc Antiq Scot 114, 235-49.

Taylor, D B 1982, 'Excavation of a promontory fort, broch and souterrain at Hurly Hawkin, Angus', Proc Soc Antiq Scot 112, 215-253.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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