Rink Hill Fort

Friday 18th October 2019

Rink Hill Archaeology Notes | Canmore- Part of Historic Environment Scotland (HES)

The striking remains of this fort lie for the most part in a walled plantation on the summit of Rink Hill at a height of 640ft .

The earliest work on the site appears to have been an oval fort or settlement measuring some 500ft by 300ft within a single rampart, which is now represented only by a ploughed-out fragment lying W of the plantation wall.

The next structural phase was an almost circular enclosure about 200 ft in diameter, formed by two heavy concentric ramparts, with a median ditch. The ruin of a massive stone wall lies on the inner rampart, but it is impossible to tell whether this is a contemporary feature or whether it represents a third structural phase.

The recorded relics from the site comprise pieces of 'coarse earthenware' (presumably native pottery), a whorl, a Roman bronze 'head-stud' brooch of Colchester type (1st to early 2nd century), picked up on the W side of the fort in 1929. The upper stones of two rotary querns were found amongst the debris of wall A by the RCAHMS. These, together with the brooch, are now in the NMAS.

A portion of a saddle-quern was found among the debris in the SE sector of the ditch in 1952. A Roman penannular brooch has also come from this site.

The ruinous foundations of several rectangular buildings which lie immediately E of the fort are probably of comparatively recent date.

Access to the fort has been improved recently with a new gate on the west wall and a stile on the east wall. Feel free to explore and soak up the atmosphere of this once significant settlement.

Film of Rink Hill Fort at sunset courtesy of The Trimontium Trust