Scheduled Monument

Haylie House, chambered cairnSM2482

Status: Designated


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Date Added
Last Date Amended
Prehistoric ritual and funerary: chambered cairn
Local Authority
North Ayrshire
NS 20950 58594
220950, 658594


The monument comprises the remains of a chambered cairn, dating from the Neolithic period. The monument was originally scheduled in 1964, but the area covered by the designation did not relate accurately to the remains on the ground. The current rescheduling rectifies this.

The chambered cairn is situated on a shelf of the hillside at around 25m OD, about 400m inland, and has a wide view across the Firth of Clyde. It lies in unimproved pasture about 75m NNE of Haylie House.

The burial chamber, sometimes known as 'Haco's Tomb', was originally covered by a large cairn, 'Margaret's Law'. This was completely removed in 1772, reportedly producing '15,000 cartloads' of stones. The Clyde-type chamber is oriented ESE to WNW, with its entrance facing uphill to the E. It measures about 6.7m in length by between 0.9m and 1.2m transversely. Originally it probably had three compartments, but only the innermost one remains intact today, built of massive slabs of quartz conglomerate, including a massive capstone. The chambers were partly excavated in 1953 and finds included two human skulls and other bones, and a flint knife or scraper.

The area to be scheduled is irregular on plan and measures 25m maximum from E to W by 17m transversely, as shown in red on the attached map.

Statement of National Importance

The monument is of national importance for its potential to enhance our knowledge of early prehistoric burial practices and funerary architecture.



RCAHMS record the site as NS25NW 1.


Aitken, W. G. and Marshall, D. (1958), 'Excavation of burial chamber at Haylie, Largs, Ayrshire in 1954', Ayrshire Archaeol Natur Hist Collect, 1955-57.

Henshall, A. (1972a), The Chambered Tombs of Scotland, Vol. 2, 396-7.

About Scheduled Monuments

Historic Environment Scotland is responsible for designating sites and places at the national level. These designations are Scheduled monuments, Listed buildings, Inventory of gardens and designed landscapes and Inventory of historic battlefields.

We make recommendations to the Scottish Government about historic marine protected areas, and the Scottish Ministers decide whether to designate.

Scheduling is the process that identifies, designates and provides statutory protection for monuments and archaeological sites of national importance as set out in the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979.

We schedule sites and monuments that are found to be of national importance using the selection guidance published in Designation Policy and Selection Guidance (2019)

Scheduled monument records provide an indication of the national importance of the scheduled monument which has been identified by the description and map. The description and map showing the scheduled area is the legal part of the scheduling. The statement of national importance and additional information provided are supplementary. These records are not definitive historical or archaeological accounts or a complete description of the monument(s).

The format of scheduled monument records has changed over time. Earlier records will usually be brief. Some information will not have been recorded and the map will not be to current standards. Even if what is described and what is mapped has changed, the monument is still scheduled.

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: 25/08/2019 12:07