Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Brahan Wood, chambered cairn 835m north west of Brahan House

A Scheduled Monument in Dingwall and Seaforth, Highland

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Latitude: 57.5622 / 57°33'43"N

Longitude: -4.5013 / 4°30'4"W

OS Eastings: 250465

OS Northings: 855215

OS Grid: NH504552

Mapcode National: GBR H88Q.T0S

Mapcode Global: WH3DT.T6Q2

Entry Name: Brahan Wood, chambered cairn 835m NW of Brahan House

Scheduled Date: 17 March 1976

Last Amended: 27 April 2016

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM3839

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric ritual and funerary: chambered cairn

Location: Urray

County: Highland

Electoral Ward: Dingwall and Seaforth

Traditional County: Ross-shire


The monument is the remains of a chambered cairn dating from the Neolithic period, probably built between 3800 and 2500 BC. It is visible as a group of large stones that define a two-compartment chamber. The cairn lies 150m above sea level, on a terrace near the top of a south facing slope above the valley of the River Conon.

The monument is an Orkney-Cromarty type chambered cairn, with a central slab dividing the chamber into two compartments. Seven stones define the chamber that measures 7.8m north-south by 2.6m transversely, and this is divided by a very large east-west aligned slab.

The scheduled area is circular on plan, measuring 30m in diameter, centred on the large, central slab that divides the chamber, 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 monument was first scheduled in 1976, but the documentation does not meet current standards: the present amendment rectifies this.


Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

This monument has potential to make a significant contribution to our understanding of the past, in particular the design and construction of pre-historic burial monuments. It continues to be visible as an upstanding field monument, and with a two compartment chamber this cairn shows a different form to many other examples in the area. Chambered cairns are often our main source of evidence for the Neolithic in Scotland, and can enhance our understanding of Neolithic society and economy, and as well as the nature of burial practices and belief systems.  This chambered cairn is one of an important group of well-preserved Neolithic burial monuments close to the coast between Beauly and Brora which represent an important surviving component of what would have been a wider prehistoric landscape of settlement, agriculture and ritual. The loss of the monument would diminish our ability to appreciate and understand the meaning and importance of death and burial in prehistoric times and the placing of cairns within the landscape.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



Historic Environment Scotland reference number CANMORE ID 12792 (accessed on 26/04/2016).

The Highland Council Historic Environment Record reference is MHG7142.

Davidson, J L and Henshall, A S 1989, The chambered cairns of Orkney: an inventory of the structures and their contents, Edinburgh.


HER/SMR Reference

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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