The Scottish Crannog Centre
The Scottish Crannog Centre features a reconstruction of the 2,500 year old ‘Oakbank Crannog’ at Fearnan, Loch Tay and a living history approach to early Iron Age life. www.crannog.co.uk
Oakbank crannog is the most extensively excavated crannog underwater. Excavation began here in the 1980s and has continued intermittently since then. Important discoveries from Oakbank include a bronze ‘swan-necked’ pin and a wooden ard (an early kind of plough) among a wide range of organic artefacts not normally recovered from contemporary terrestrial archaeological sites. The site dates from the Early Iron Age, roughly 800-400 BC. Establishing a more precise chronology for the site is a main aim of the project, and this chronology will tie together and contextualise the important information gathered over the last 35 years at Oakbank.
Milton Morenish Crannog
The Milton Morenish crannog was first surveyed in 1979. Exposed timber elements on the submerged site were later sampled for radiocarbon dating which revealed evidence for building and occupation in the Early Iron Age, approximately 800-400 BC. Excavations planned as part of the Living on Water project will be the first intrusive archaeological work at this site.
Dall South Crannog
Dall South crannog is located on the south shore of Loch Tay, and is notably for being on 25m from another crannog, Dall North. Radiocarbon dates from Dall South suggest an Early Iron Age phase of activity and it is possible that this is contemporary with building or occupation at Dall North. Excavation is planned at Dall South crannog as part of the project in 2017.
Dall Bay North Crannog
Dall Bay North is a target for the 2018 field season. Previous work here has noted its close proximity to Dall Bay South Crannog, just 50 m to the south. It lies in relatively deep water, with the top of the mound usually in more 1.5 m of water. 14C dates from the site indicate activity in the Early Iron Age as well as in the early medieval period more about 1000 years later. Our excavation will target the Early Iron Age phases aiming to build a picture of the density of crannog settlement in Dall Bay and across the loch.
Fearnan Crannog is located just 200 m to the west of Oakbank crannog. It has seen relatively little previous investigation limited to survey and one radiocarbon sample. That sample returned an Early Iron Age date, calibrating across the Halstatt plateau. This means that Fearnan Crannog may well be contemporary with Oakbank, but also it might date to more than 200 years earlier than phases confidently dated at Oakbank to c. 450 BC. Our work at Fearnan will allow us to determine the chronological relationship between these two crannogs.