Ancient Monuments

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Cnoc Mhic Eoghainn, motte 170m WSW of Ballimore

A Scheduled Monument in Cowal, Argyll and Bute

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Latitude: 55.9973 / 55°59'50"N

Longitude: -5.334 / 5°20'2"W

OS Eastings: 192188

OS Northings: 683272

OS Grid: NR921832

Mapcode National: GBR FD6V.X34

Mapcode Global: WH1KQ.1J99

Entry Name: Cnoc Mhic Eoghainn, motte 170m WSW of Ballimore

Scheduled Date: 21 August 1974

Last Amended: 2 March 2016

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM3504

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Secular: motte

Location: Kilfinan

County: Argyll and Bute

Electoral Ward: Cowal

Traditional County: Argyllshire


The monument comprises the remains of a motte dating probably to the 12th or 13th century. It is visible as a substantial oval flat-topped mound with the remains of a surrounding ditch around its east, south and west sides. The monument is situated about 30m east of the shore of Loch Fyne at approximately 10m above sea level. The monument was first scheduled in 1974, but the documentation did not meet current standards: the present amendment rectifies this.

The steep-sided motte, formed by enhancing a natural mound, stands up to 9m high above the surrounding ditch. Its oval summit area measures around 24m northeast-southwest by 15m transversely and is reached by a causeway 4m wide over the ditch and a path up the west flank. A projecting low scarp or ditch on the northwest side encloses a small area beyond the mound. Two rectangular 19th-century burial enclosures occupy the summit of the mound, which was probably modified to accommodate them. A plaque in the northeast enclosure records that this was 'formerly the burying place of the family of Campbell of Otter 1855'. The motte has been incorporated into the wooded policies of the designed landscape of Ballimore house.

The scheduled area is a circle on plan, 90m in diameter, 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. The scheduling specifically excludes the above-ground remains of the two walled enclosures and memorial stones to allow for their maintenance.


Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

The monument is of national importance because it has an inherent potential to make a significant addition to our understanding of the past, in particular the dating, construction and functions of a medieval stronghold. Despite the later re-use of the summit, the monument survives to marked degree. Comparison with other excavated examples suggests it is likely to preserve important archaeological features and deposits, such as the remains of buildings and other structures, including potentially the footings of a timber castle, as well as occupation debris and palaeoenvironmental evidence. The ditch fills in particular may preserve important evidence for the contemporary land-use and how this changed over time. Its proximity to other prehistoric and medieval fortified sites, and its association with the McEwan and Campbell clans, increase its archaeological and historical interest. The loss of this motte would diminish our ability to appreciate and understand medieval strongholds, settlement and land tenure, both in this part of Argyll and more widely across Scotland.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



Historic Environment Scotland reference number CANMORE ID 39967 (accessed on 15/4/2014).

West of Scotland Archaeology Service database record reference: WOSAS PIN 4552 (accessed on 15/4/2014).


HER/SMR Reference


Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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