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Roundhouses and enclosure, 305m east of Craigend

A Scheduled Monument in Strathtay, Perth and Kinross

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Latitude: 56.619 / 56°37'8"N

Longitude: -3.5069 / 3°30'25"W

OS Eastings: 307622

OS Northings: 748473

OS Grid: NO076484

Mapcode National: GBR V4.H55N

Mapcode Global: WH5N1.3W9P

Entry Name: Roundhouses and enclosure, 305m E of Craigend

Scheduled Date: 8 January 2024

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM13780

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric domestic and defensive: enclosure (domestic or defensive)

Location: Clunie

County: Perth and Kinross

Electoral Ward: Strathtay

Traditional County: Perthshire


The monument comprises the remains of group of four roundhouses and enclosure dating from the Bronze Age (2,500 BC – 800 BC) to Iron Age (800 BC – AD 400). The roundhouses are visible as upstanding, circular drystone structures arranged in an 'L' to either side of a road orientated northeast-southwest. The group is  located to the southeast of Benachally hill on a terrace at approximately 330m above sea level. 

The first, and most southerly roundhouse, is located at NO 07602 48450, and measures 11m in diameter within a wall 2.2m in thick and 0.3m high with an entrance to the south-southeast. Immediatedly to the west is an associated levelled platform. The second roundhouse, located at NO 07616 48469, measures 7.75m in diameter within a wall 2.6m thick and 0.3m high with an entrance of the south-southeast. Between the first and second roundhouseis an enclosure entered from the southeast. The third roundhouse, located at NO 07625 48482, measures 8.5m in diameter within a wall 3.8m thick and 0.25m high with an entrance to the east. The fourth roundhouse, located at NO 07649 48477, measures 8.2m in diameter within a wall 3.3m thick and 0.3m high with an entrance to the south-southeast. All the roundhouses have stretches of the inner and outer wall faces visible; in the second, third and fourth hut circles this takes the form of upright slabs. 

The scheduled area is a circle clipped to the south and east. 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. It excludes the top 300mm of the road and the above ground elements of all current post and wire fencing. 

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, or has the potential to do so as a group of four upstanding roundhouses and an enclosure, the remains of which are evidence of prehistoric settlement.

b.   The monument retains structural and physical attributes which make a significant contribution to our understanding or appreciation of the past, in particular, identifiable entrances and upstanding walls with facing slabs and a connecting enclosure between the first and second roundhouse. There is the potential for the survival of stratified archaeological deposits from which artefacts could be recovered. Environmental sampling of these deposits could recover charcoal for radiocarbon dating along with carbonized seeds and plant material.

d.   The monument is a particularly good example of a group of four upstanding hut circles with a connecting enclosure and platform - it is therefore an important representative of this monument type – a prehistoric settlement.

e.   The monument has research potential which could significantly contribute to our understanding or appreciation of the past. For example, it has the potential to tell us about the lifestyle of the inhabitants and the nature of the local economy such as agriculture and trade and the chronological development of the site.

f.   The monument makes a significant contribution to today's landscape and/or our understanding of the later prehistoric landscape by providing clearly recognisable examples of prehistoric settlement; evidence of settlement patterns density, distribution and size of individual settlements; land use and the extent of human impact on the local environment over time.

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 monument comprises the remains of four later prehistoric roundhouses and an enclosure which survive as upstanding remains and buried archaeological deposits. Roundhouses are the remains of prehistoric buildings, most commonly thought to be dwellings and were in use throughout the Bronze Age (Bronze 2,500 BC – 800 BC) and Iron Age (800 BC – AD 400).

Material recovered from roundhouses in close proximity can show prolonged periods of site occupation or instances of reoccupation. Excavations at the comparable site of Tulloch Field, Perth and Kinross (Canmore ID 27582), have provided material from two roundhouses for radiocarbon dating. 'Site A' dated to 1415 BC and 1120 BC and further date of 173BC from 'Site B' provides evidence of activity into the middle Iron Age. Artefacts discovered at the site include local pottery, a saddle quern, waste flakes from producing stone tools, and a thin piece of a bronze blade. Environmental remains in the form of charcoal were also identified and may be the remains of internal structures (Thoms and Halliday 2013–2014).

This monument is likely to contain archaeological deposits from which artefacts can be recovered for study and environmental samples gathered for analysis and radiocarbon dating. There is the opportunity to study the roundhouses as a group to determine how they relate to one another, their functions and chronological development the diet and lifestyle of the inhabitants; the nature of the local economy. Detailed study of the roundhouses can tell us about their construction, use, reuse, repair and abandonment.

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

The monument is located to the southeast of Benachally hill approximately 330m above sea level. To the west is an area of lower lying ground while to the north and east the ground gently rises. Approximately 1km to the north the Benachally Burn meets Loch Benachally. The first roundhouse is associated with a levelled platform to the west.

Roundhouses are a common monument type in Scotland with upstanding remains  primarily surviving in upland areas. There are 428 entries in the National Record of the historic environment relating to hut circles in Perthshire; many of the sites include multiple examples. They can be found in association with platforms, field systems, clearance cairns and burial cairns. They range in size and a diversity in form and number can be observed between sites. They are an important indicator of the extent and distribution of prehistoric settlement in Scotland.

There is evidence of considerable settlement of the surrounding landscape in later prehistory. Middleton Muir, settlements, field systems, cairns and deer dyke (scheduled monument SM5396; 5.2km west) comprises at least 30 round houses thought to date to the Bronze Age (Bronze 2,500 BC – 800 BC) along with field systems and burial cairns. Groups of roundhouses can also be seen to the southeast (Canmore ID 27100; 330m southeast and Loch Benachally (Canmore ID 27056; 1.5km northeast).

As clearly recognisable examples of prehistoric hut circles the monument contributes to the character of the surrounding landscape, providing significant time depth. There is the potential to study the monument in relation to similar sites in the area. This could tell us about the development of the later prehistoric landscape; the density, distribution and size of settlements, the nature of local land use and the extent of human impact on the environment over time.

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

We are unaware of any associative characteristics that contribute to this sites national importance.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



Historic Environment Scotland reference number CANMORE ID 27101, 27102, 27103, 27104, 225136 (accessed on 22/03/2023).

Local Authority HER/SMR Reference MPK2400, MPK14121 (accessed on 05/10/2023).

Thoms, L. and Halliday, S.P. (2013–2014) 'Survey and excavation at two prehistoric hut-circles in Tulloch Field, Enochdhu, Strathardle, Perthshire with an evaluation of their research and regional contexts.' In Tayside and Fife Archaeological Journal vol 19–20, p. 2–20 (Available at (‌2021/05/‌V19_20p1-19-ThomsHalliday.pdf) (Accessed on 28/09/2023).

RCAHMS. (1990a) The Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland. North-east Perth: an archaeological landscape. Edinburgh. RCAHMS


HER/SMR Reference


Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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