Project preserves ancient broch

Project preserves ancient broch

An ancient Iron Age tower on the Caithness estate - part of the Welbeck estate - has been saved for future generations, thanks to the completion of a major conservation project.

Open to the elements, Ousdale Burn Broch, south of Berriedale in Scotland, had been gradually deteriorating over a period of more than 130 years. Engineers, however, have now been able to repair the damage and install protection measures to prevent further damage. 

Archaeological charity, Caithness Broch Project, secured funding for the work with support from Historic Environment Scotland's historic repair grant scheme, Highland leader programme and Beatrice Caithness community fund.

Brochs, such as this ancient, circular drystone tower, are believed to date back some 2,000 years and were used as dwellings, perhaps for local chieftains. Caithness is home to about 200 brochs, with Ousdale Broch once been described as one of the best preserved brochs in the north. It is said the project will help transform the conservation of other stone monuments across Scotland.

The Welbeck Estates Company Limited owns and operates rural estates in Caithness and Northumberland as well as a wider property portfolio across the uk.