Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Heights of Brae, boulder containing prehistoric rock art, 110m SSE of Ivy Croft

A Scheduled Monument in Wester Ross, Strathpeffer and Lochalsh, Highland

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Latitude: 57.6151 / 57°36'54"N

Longitude: -4.4795 / 4°28'46"W

OS Eastings: 251983

OS Northings: 861052

OS Grid: NH519610

Mapcode National: GBR H89L.QVC

Mapcode Global: WH3DG.5V5K

Entry Name: Heights of Brae, boulder containing prehistoric rock art, 110m SSE of Ivy Croft

Scheduled Date: 14 March 2016

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM13645

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric ritual and funerary: cupmarks or cup-and-ring marks and similar rock art

Location: Fodderty

County: Highland

Electoral Ward: Wester Ross, Strathpeffer and Lochalsh

Traditional County: Ross-shire


The monument is an earthfast boulder with two of its faces containing carved prehistoric motifs probably created between about 3500BC and 2500BC. It has been relocated to the Heights of Brae Neil Gunn viewpoint, on gently sloping ground overlooking the Cromarty Firth and the Black Isle to the south, at 200m above sea level.

The oblong schist boulder is approximately 0.85m high by 0.76m wide by 0.42m broad. Each of the two carved panels contains a complex design of cups, cup and rings, conjoined cups and groove marks. The rings are generally concentric around single cups but some are incomplete, forming only a curved channel around a single cup. Several of the motifs are interconnected by grooves. In total there are approximately 13 cups and eight cup and ring motifs on the west-facing panel and 24 cups and three cup and ring motifs on the east-facing panel.   

The scheduled area is circular on plan measuring 2m in diameter and centred on the boulder and includes the remains described above and an area around it for its support and preservation, as shown in red on the accompanying map. The scheduling specifically excludes the modern surface surrounding the boulder and the adjoining stone dyke to allow for their maintenance.

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, prehistoric rock art studies in Scotland. The monument is an uncommon variant of the class of monument because it has two decorated panels, each of which contains an unusual assemblage of motifs – cup marks and cup and ring marks, several of which are conjoined by grooves. The monument has the potential to enhance our understanding of the meaning and function of such decorated panels. The loss of the monument would significantly diminish our future ability to appreciate and understand rock art and its place in prehistoric society.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



The Highland Council Historic Environment Record reference is MHG55106.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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