Scotland's Coastal Heritage at Risk

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Ore Ledge Lopness (12899)

Current Priority
1
East
375853
North
1043810
Site Type
Broch??
Period
PREHISTORIC

Very substantial drystone structure visible in section in coast edge, standing c.2m high. The structure has been half-sectioned by the sea. It appears to have intramural spaces or passages and could be a broch-type building, or even a chambered tomb? The presence of midden and archaeological material would lend more support to the former interpretation.

The visible deposits cover a stretch of c.12m, and may continue to the north, but modern dumping obscures this part of the section.

The southern part of the section contains a very large, curving double-faced wall, c.3m wide, with a possible intramural space. The faces of the wall stand up to c.1m high in section, and large stones eroded out on the beach follow the projected line along both the inner and outer faces. The projected line of the outer face of this wall is in line with a ridge of bedrock forming the foreshore here.

The interior of the structure appears to have been divided into compartments by a series of piers constructed of coursed drystone walls and very large orthostats (c.2m high). The walls are surrounded by rubble and collapsed walling and c.1m of midden deposits containing bone, shell, charcoal flecks and fire-cracked stone in a peat ash matrix.

The curving outer wall visible on the south side of the structure appears to suggest that more than half of the building has been lost to erosion, with less than half remaining behind the coast edge, although a slight mound behind the section indicates the site's location.

Extensive tipping over coast edge (presumably as an ad hoc coastal defence) has obscured the northern side of the site, though intermittent areas of stonework and large slabs are visible in section among the modern rubble and very large slabs on the foreshore may be the eroding remains of further walling.

The site has been very badly damaged by coastal erosion, and more than half has already been lost.

Condition and current recommendations:

Condition
Action

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Other records:

NMRS
Unknown
SMR
Unknown

ShoreUpdates

2 ShoreUpdates accepted and 0 pending.

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21st April, 2013 by Myra
Survey Information
User:
Myra
Date:
April 21, 2013
Tidal state:
low
Site located?:
Yes
Condition Information
Proximity to coast edge:
coast edge
Coastally eroding?:
active sea erosion
Is there a coastal defence?:
no
Other threats?:
animal burrows; tipping
Description:

Possible site of a Broch? Noticeable structure that looks like an inner and outer wall.

Management Information
How visible are the remains? (above ground):
limited visibility (partial remains)
How visible are the remains? (in section):
clearly visible in section
How accessibile is the site?:
accessible- difficult terrain; accessible on foot (no footpath)
The site is:
is not locally known
Comments and recommendations
Recommendations:

Monitor site over the seasons. Could be a good site for suitable/further investigation.

4th May, 2015 by training1
Survey Information
User:
training1
Date:
May 4, 2015
Tidal state:
mid
Site located?:
Yes
Condition Information
Proximity to coast edge:
intertidal
Coastally eroding?:
active sea erosion; has eroded in the past
Is there a coastal defence?:
no
Other threats?:
tipping
Description:

The building has been sectioned by coastal erosion, and it appears from the surviving stretches of the outer walls that more than half of the broch has been destroyed.

Structural remains may continue to the north, but modern dumping obscures this area of coast.

Management Information
How visible are the remains? (above ground):
limited visibility (partial remains)
How visible are the remains? (in section):
clearly visible in section
How accessibile is the site?:
vehicular access
Comments and recommendations
Comments:

This is a high-priority site. It is both important and vulnerable to further damage and destruction by coastal erosion, and together with the associated settlement (12903) to the south should be assigned priority 1.

Recommendations:

Assign priority 1 score.