Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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An Dun, broch, Berriedale

A Scheduled Monument in Wick and East Caithness, Highland

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Latitude: 58.2039 / 58°12'13"N

Longitude: -3.5272 / 3°31'38"W

OS Eastings: 310340

OS Northings: 924912

OS Grid: ND103249

Mapcode National: GBR K7N1.GYZ

Mapcode Global: WH5DG.S2K5

Entry Name: An Dun, broch, Berriedale

Scheduled Date: 15 June 1939

Last Amended: 7 October 2016

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM518

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric domestic and defensive: broch

Location: Latheron

County: Highland

Electoral Ward: Wick and East Caithness

Traditional County: Caithness


The monument is a broch, a complex stone-built substantial roundhouse, dating from the Iron Age (between 600BC and AD 400). The broch is visible as a substantial stoney mound, with surviving walling and associated banks and ditches, on a hillock on the west side of Berriedale at around 135m above sea level.

The broch measures 14m in diameter with the internal diameter approximately 7.5m, and it sits on a hillock rising 5m above the surrounding hillside. Traces of an entrance lie on the west of the broch with the remains of a possible intramural cell directly to the east of the entrance. The broch wall stands up to almost 1m in height with sections of inner and outer faces visible. The broch and hillock are encircled by a ditch almost 5m wide and 1.8m deep with evidence for up to three other ditches to the northeast. The monument is located in a prominent position on the hillside moor with extensive views over Berriedale Water. Further prehistoric remains, including hut circles and associated field systems, can be identified in close proximity to the broch.

The scheduled area, centred on the monument, is circular on plan with a diameter of 100m 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 1939, but the documentation did not meet current standards: the present amendment rectifies this.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

This monument is of national importance because it has an inherent potential to make a significant addition to our understanding of the past, in particular of Iron Age society in Caithness and the function, use and development of brochs. It is a  well-preserved example with visible architectural features  including the entrance, an intramural cell and wall faces.  The outer-works of the broch are impressive with a substantial ditch and further likely works to the northeast. There are a number of potentially contemporary sites within the vicinity of An Dun. The loss of the monument would diminish our future ability to appreciate and understand the development, use and re-use of brochs, and the nature of Iron Age society, economy and social hierarchy in Caithness and further afield.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland: CANMORE ID 8068.

Highland Council HER Reference: MHG 1098.


Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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