Scheduled Monument

Boarhills, pill boxes 1250m NW ofSM10862

Status: Designated


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Date Added
Supplementary Information Updated
20th Century Military and Related: Pillbox
Local Authority
St Andrews And St Leonards
NO 55849 15201
355849, 715201


The monument consists of a pair of well-camouflaged inter-linked Second World War pill boxes set into a rock promontory overlooking the foreshore, facing north-eastwards out to sea.

The pill box on the south-east side of the promontory, which contains the entrance doorway as well as gun embrasures, is partly cut into the rock and partly constructed of rubble masonry, with the excavated rock presumably being put to re-use for the rubble masonry. It is capped by a concrete canopy supported by steel joists. Connecting the first with the second pill box is a rock-cut corridor of arched section that is reinforced for part of its length by metal hoops. The second pill box is on the north-west side of the rock promontory, and has a vertical escape hatch and gun embrasures. The projecting portions of the concrete canopies have inset rocks and turf on their upper surfaces to act as camouflage.

According to local tradition the pill boxes were built by Polish troops, and it is possible that these were from the same contingent that was working on the coastal defence line at Tentsmuir. The defence of the parts of the Fife coast that were deemed particularly vulnerable to enemy landings was a high priority, since the coast was set between the strategically important rail crossings of the Firths of Forth and Tay, and could give access to a major naval base at Rosyth and to important air bases at Leuchars and Crail.

The area to be scheduled is irregular, with maximum dimensions of 105m from south-south-west to north-north-east, and 80m from north-north-west to south-south-east, as marked on the attached map. It includes the pillboxes themselves, an area of the rock above and behind them into which the pillboxes were intended to merge, and an area of rough ground in front of them where there would have been barbed wire entanglements amongst the scrub.

Statement of National Importance

The paired pill boxes which form this monument are of national importance both as a part of a major defensive line constructed along the Fife coast during the Second World War, and as a unique illustration of one of the ways in which individual elements along that line could be adapted to the configuration of the terrain in which they were located.



No Bibliography entries for this designation

About Scheduled Monuments

Historic Environment Scotland is responsible for the designation of buildings, monuments, gardens and designed landscapes and historic battlefields. We also advise Scottish Ministers on the designation of historic marine protected areas.

Scheduling is the way that a monument or archaeological site of national importance is recognised by law through the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979.

We schedule sites and monuments of national importance using the criteria published in the Historic Environment Scotland Policy Statement.

The description and map showing the scheduled area is the legal part of the scheduling. The additional information in the scheduled monument record gives an indication of the national importance of the monument(s). It is not a definitive account or a complete description of the monument(s). The format of scheduled monument records has changed over time. Earlier records will usually be brief and some information will not have been recorded. Scheduled monument consent is required to carry out certain work, including repairs, to scheduled monuments. Applications for scheduled monument consent are made to us. We are happy to discuss your proposals with you before you apply and we do not charge for advice or consent. More information about consent and how to apply for it can be found on our website at

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Printed: 20/04/2019 19:16