Scotland's Coastal Heritage at Risk

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Ness Of Garth (5369)

Current Priority
2
East
421643
North
1158200
Site Type
Promontory Fort
Period
1st mill BC-1st mill AD

The remains of a defended fort occupy a promontory, which is now cut off from the mainland at high tide. On the landward side of the promontory, two stone-faced ramparts are revetted into the slope, one behind the other. A small erosion face, of recent origin, was noted below the lowest of the ramparts on the landward side of the promontory. It measures 2m in length and is 1m high. No definite archaeological deposits were visible. At the top of the slope, grass-covered rubble may be part of a third line of defence, now completely ruinous. The footings of at least one small structure lie further out on the promontory. Previously, the remains of at least three structures were noted on the promontory and the defences were described as being far more substantial than they now appear (Source: NMRS). This site has apparently suffered significantly from coastal erosion in the past thirty years.

Survey in June 2014: further erosion to the south-west side of the fort with possible further loss of rampart walls with more loss certainly imminent within the next year or two from exposure to south-easterly gales.

Condition and current recommendations:

Condition
Fair/poor
Action
Visit - check condition; characterise site and obtain dating evidence ;
Survey site - using several techniques to characterise site ;
Excavate site - targetted excavation of vulnerable areas

Over to you...

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Record W140 on map Westside: Map 11 in Report on a Coastal Zone Assessment Survey of Westside. Shetland, 1996

Other records:

NMRS
379
SMR
SMR2532

ShoreUpdates

1 ShoreUpdate accepted and 0 pending.

Click on an update to expand it.

20th June, 2014 by bjohnston79291
Survey Information
User:
bjohnston79291
Date:
June 20, 2014
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
Description:

The remains of a defended fort occupy a promontory, which is now cut off from the mainland at high tide. On the landward side of the promontory, two stone-faced ramparts are revetted into the slope, one behind the other. A small erosion face, of recent origin, was noted below the lowest of the ramparts on the landward side of the promontory. It measures 2m in length and is 1m high. No definite archaeological deposits were visible. At the top of the slope, grass-covered rubble may be part of a third line of defence, now completely ruinous. The footings of at least one small structure lie further out on the promontory. Previously, the remains of at least three structures were noted on the promontory and the defences were described as being far more substantial than they now appear (Source: NMRS). This site has apparently suffered significantly from coastal erosion in the past thirty years.

Survey in June 2014: further erosion to the south-west side of the fort with possible further loss of rampart walls with more loss certainly imminent within the next year or two from exposure to south-easterly gales.

Management Information
How visible are the remains? (above ground):
limited visibility (partial remains)
How visible are the remains? (in section):
limited visibility in section
How accessibile is the site?:
accessible- difficult terrain
The site is:
is well known
Comments and recommendations
Recommendations:

Part of the site actively eroding, vulnerable to extreme weather events. Reassign to priority 2

Photos

bjohnston79291's image
Cliff erosion. by bjohnston79291
bjohnston79291's image
The second rampart. by bjohnston79291
bjohnston79291's image
Towards the shore. by bjohnston79291