Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Standing Stone, 470m SSE of Beverkae House

A Scheduled Monument in Burntisland, Kinghorn and Western Kirkcaldy, Fife

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Latitude: 56.0901 / 56°5'24"N

Longitude: -3.3053 / 3°18'18"W

OS Eastings: 318881

OS Northings: 689361

OS Grid: NT188893

Mapcode National: GBR 24.N7DN

Mapcode Global: WH6RZ.66B2

Entry Name: Standing Stone, 470m SSE of Beverkae House

Scheduled Date: 15 March 2021

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM13742

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric ritual and funerary: standing stone

Location: Aberdour (Fife)

County: Fife

Electoral Ward: Burntisland, Kinghorn and Western Kirkcaldy

Traditional County: Fife


The monument comprises a standing stone likely to date to the late Neolithic or Bronze Age periods (between 3,800 and 2,500 BC). The stone stands to around 2.3m in height and measures 0.6m by 1m at its base. An Ordnance Survey benchmark is located near the base on the west face. The standing stone is located on a wall line beside a track at around 160m OD.

The scheduled area is circular, measuring 10m in diameter. It includes the remains described above and an area around within which evidence relating to the monument's construction, use and abandonment is expected to survive, as shown in red on the accompanying map.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

The national importance of the monument is demonstrated in the following way(s) (see Designations Policy and Selection Guidance, Annex 1, para 17):

a.   The monument is of national importance because it makes a significant contribution to our understanding or appreciation of the past. Standing stones are one of the main sources of evidence for the Neolithic in Scotland and so are important in our understanding of the nature of Scotland's prehistoric society and landscape. The example contributes to our understanding of prehistoric ritual monuments in the Neolithic period.

d.   The monument is a particularly good example of a standing stone and is therefore an important representative of this monument type.

e.   The monument has research potential which could significantly contribute to our understanding or appreciation of the past. The form of the monument can be researched, contrasted and compared with other monuments of this type. Additionally, there is the potential for environmental material to survive around the base of the standing stones which could provide information on demographics, land use and environment.

Assessment of Cultural Significance

This statement of national importance has been informed by the following assessment of cultural significance:

Intrinsic characteristics (how the remains of a site or place contribute to our knowledge of the past)

The standing stone is of significant size and is likely to stand on or near to its original location. The stone is heavily weathered with channels running down from its summit. This is similar to weathering of other prehistoric standing stones, notably Aberdour Lodge, standing stone 110m SW of (scheduled monument SM749). This weathering would indicate that the stone has been upright and exposed to the elements for an extended period of time. The stone has been used at some point as a gate and a possibly a fence post: a metal hanger for a gate survives on the east face and there are two rectangular holes on the south face which are probably for fence struts.

In some excavated examples, such as at Carlinwell, Angus (scheduled monument SM4315) inhumations or cremation burials have been found placed around standing stones and this includes skeletal material as well as urns and grave goods. Surviving environmental remains can help us understand more about the vegetation cover and land use at the time of its erection and then use. Scientific study of this monument when compared to others has the potential to increase our understanding of the distribution and use of prehistoric ritual monuments in the Neolithic period.

Contextual characteristics (how a site or place relates to its surroundings and/or to our existing knowledge of the past)

Standing stones are a widespread class of monument across Scotland. There are over 1200 examples recording in the National Record of the Historic Environment, 25 of which are located in Fife. Many of these are located in arable fields at elevated locations, however, this monument is located in a dyke line beside an old road, named as the 'Old North Road' on the 2nd Edition Ordnance Survey map. It is unclear if this stone is in its original location, however, it is possible that it was erected beside an important early route and that the field dyke was built around the stone.

The 1st Edition OS map shows two further stones located in fields to the south, neither of which are they are shown by the time the 2nd Edition was published. This highlights that other nearby standing stones were moved from to allow for unhindered agricultural activities.

Associative characteristics (how a site or place relates to people, events, and/or historic and social movements)

There are no known associative characteristics that contribute to the national importance of the monument.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland




Ordnance Survey (1856). Fife, Sheet 36 (includes: Aberdour; Auchterderran; Auchtertool; Burntisland; Kinghorn) Survey date: 1854 Publication date: 1856.

Ordnance Survey (1894). Fife and Kinross Sheet XXXV.SW (includes: Aberdour; Auchterderran; Auchtertool; Kinghorn) Publication date: 1896 Date revised: 1894.


Ashmore P J (1996). Neolithic and Bronze Age Scotland. B.T Batsford Ltd, London.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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