Tales from the forest

Inspiration, stories and an insider's glimpse into the world of Scotland's forests

Postcards from a travelling archaeologist: Castle Hill

To celebrate the Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology, we asked our archaeologist ‘Travelling’ Matt to send us postcards from his fieldwork around the country.

Over the course of the year, Matt has promised to send us a postcard from some of the amazing places he finds himself in, describing the archaeology and talking to the Forestry Rangers who care for it.

Last time Matt was visiting a clapper bridge in Knapdale – but a new postcard has just arrived!

travelling matt castle postcard

"Hi guys,

This week I’m down in the Tweed Valley, on the trail of some pretty elusive archaeology!

Sitting on the summit of Castle Hill near Glentress is a ‘palisaded settlement’ – an early form of hillfort perhaps built around 3000 years ago. All of the timbers have long since rotted away – but their foundations can still (just about) be seen within the turf.

This archaeological measured survey blends traditional hachures (the little lines of arrows that show changes in topography) with a three-dimensional hill-shaded terrain model.

A modern drystone wall can be seen alongside several small quarry pits that were dug to find stone to build it. But can you also see the narrow palisade trenches and ‘ring grooves’ left from ancient timber roundhouses?

Matt"

 travelling matt castle hill image
(c) Forestry Commission Scotland by Rubicon Heritage

Where is Matt heading next?

We're looking forward to hearing from Matt on his next trip, exploring the World War II ‘coastal crust’ of Lossie Forest in Moray…

 

Find out about other archaeological sites to visit in and around Scotland's forests or let us know your favourite historical site to explore!


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