Archaeology around the Ness of Brodgar

2013 road work revealed structure beyond the ‘Great Wall’

The six-metre-long section of walling uncovered during work to insert a passing place opposite the site entrance in 2013. (📷 ORCA) The location of the 2013 trench in relation to the Ness excavation site. (maps.google.com) …

Solved! The perplexing puzzle of the Stones of Stenness ‘building’

The Standing Stones of Stenness (1906). There’s nothing like finally getting to the bottom of an irksome puzzle. In this case, the puzzle related to an old photograph of the Stones of Stenness (above). The …
The Ness of Brodgar today, flanked by the Lochs of Stenness (left) and Harray (right). (Scott Pike)

Ness flanked by lochs in prehistory? Surveys suggest otherwise

The Ness of Brodgar sits at the centre of a massive natural “cauldron” formed by the hills of the surrounding landscape. Today, it is accentuated on either side by the freshwater Loch of Harray and …
The Watchstone and the Brig o' Brodgar (Jim Richardson)

The Watchstone

One of Orkney’s most imposing standing stones, the Watchstone dominates the south-eastern end of the Brig o’ Brodgar – the place where the Harray and Stenness lochs meet …
Maeshowe interior. (Jim Richardson)

Agents of transformation – chambered cairns in Neolithic Orkney

The presence of two main styles of Neolithic chambered cairn in Orkney has led to years of debate on their dates, use and development. Here, Sigurd looks at current thinking on Orkney’s cairns, particularly in …
Dyke o' Sean, Stenness.

The Dyke of Sean – a third monumental wall crossing the Ness

The Dyke of Sean, a suspected prehistoric earthwork near the Ring of Brodgar, fascinates visitors with its monumental size. It measures up to seven metres wide and a metre high, spanning 500 meters between the …
Ness of Brodgar. (Jim Richardson)

A natural cursus? Water, walls and walking the Ness

Previously we saw that the Dyke of Sean was perhaps once one of three — or possibly four — walls that ran the width of the Ness of Brodgar in the Neolithic. Did these define …
Comet Stone and Ring of Brodgar. 2000. (Sigurd Towrie)

The Comet Stone

On low ground 140 metres (153 yards) east of the Ring of Brodgar is the monolith now commonly known as the Comet Stone …
Little Barnhouse Mound. Sigurd Towrie

The ‘Little Barnhouse’ mound

Just outside Stenness village, and opposite the Standing Stones Hotel, is a large oval mound. The tumulus was given scheduled monument status in 2002 and assigned the name “Little Barnhouse” …
South-eastern entrance to the Ring of Brodgar. (Sigurd Towrie)

The Ring of Brodgar

With a diameter of 103.6m (340ft), the Ring of Brodgar is the larger of the two stone circles in the Heart of Neolithic Orkney World Heritage Site and one of the biggest in the British …