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Isle of Skye


Prehistoric cave on Skye "Still occupied"

A cave thought to have been occupied by people as early as 3BC was still being lived in this year, it has emerged.

A new hearth for a fire and stacks of wood cut for kindling were found in the L-shaped fissure at Leitir Fura, Kinloch, on Skye.

Its present day occupation is noted in the former sea cave's entry on Highland Council's historic environment record database.

The cave is 6m deep and stretches to 3m at its widest sections.

Forestry Commission Scotland commissioned archaeologist Martin Wildgoose to make a fresh assessment of a township abandoned during the Highland Clearances and the nearby cave.

His report was published earlier this year and is among new additions uploaded to the online database of Highland archaeological and historic sites.

Excavations of the cave in May 1996 uncovered evidence that the cave was occupied at periods of time from at least 3BC.

When it was first discovered tools, pottery, a hearth and a shell midden were found suggesting people had lived in it during the late 18th or early 19th Century.

But according to its historic environment record entry, the site remains in regular use.

From BBC News website:
thesweetcheat Posted by thesweetcheat
24th August 2010ce
Edited 24th August 2010ce

Comments (3)

3BC sounds awfully exact. Do you think there's a stone with the graffiti I woz ere 3BC or something?
Nice as it is to contemplate the continuity of use, I reckon they're short on news if finding out people use a cave makes headlines ?!

Anyway Skye is truly lovely. I see that Leiltir Fura is at NG 732 158 btw, so quite far from the nearest supermarket etc. So probably quite a good place to stay.
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
25th August 2010ce
Ha ha ha! I hadn't even noticed that - perhaps they mean 3000BC?

I'm guessing they would be short on news, particularly if they are no supermarket shoplifting sprees to report.
thesweetcheat Posted by thesweetcheat
25th August 2010ce
Me and quite a few people I know use caves as a place to sleep whilst out in the wilds, and I've read of others doing it, so it doesn't really surprise me.
I know of a couple of boulders in the Lakes that have formed a cave, with an entrance in which you have to crawl. It's been fitted out with wooden platforms to sleep on, and has a small fireplace, with a flue-liner to extract the smoke up through a gap, which has been sealed. In its prime it had gas lamps, fueled by a calor gas canister. The high life, eh?
It's a great experience to briefly get back to living in caves and howfs.

The Eternal Posted by The Eternal
25th August 2010ce
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