Stone Circle (destroyed): OS Grid Reference – NR 99 36
Also Known as:
Archaeology & History
Along the B880 glen road that cuts Arran roughly in half, known as The String, could once be seen a stone circle that one early writer told was quite impressive. Today It seems that all trace of the circle has gone. The earliest mention of it seems to be in James Headrick’s (1807) work, where, in discussing what he thought were “Druidical” remains of obelisks and cairns in the area,
“A more entire circle of this sort is seen on the rising ground at the mouth of Glen Shirreg, towards the west.”
But he tells us no more. Shortly afterwards—according to reverend Allan McNaughton in the New Statistical Account of the 1830s—it was destroyed. He said that,
“about twenty-four years ago, a very complete circle at the mouth of Glensheraig was removed, in clearing the field in which it stood for the operations of the plough.”
Despite this short remark, eighty years later we had J.A. Balfour (1910) inform us that,
“On the right of the String Road going west in Glen Sherraig is a small ruined monument of which three small standing stones alone remain, so disposed as to suggest that the original structure was a double circle.”
However, Balfour’s site may be an altogether different one to that mentioned by Headrick and McNaughton.
Aubrey Burl (2000) lists it in his major work; but its ancient life was, once again, brought to end in these recent years by those of less sound minds than our ancestors.
- Balfour, J.A., The Book of Arran – volume 1, Arran Society of Glasgow 1910.
- Bryce, James, “Account of excavations within the stone circle of Arran“, in Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries, Scotland, volume 4, 1863.
- Burl, Aubrey, The Stone Circles of Britain, Ireland and Brittany, Yale University Press 2000.
- Headrick, James, View of the Mineralogy, Agriculture, Manufactures and Fisheries of the Islland of Arran, with Notices of Antiquities, D. Willison: Edinburgh 1807.
© Paul Bennett, The Northern Antiquarian