Scheduled Monument

Stone Lud, standing stone, recumbent stone and cairn 240m WSW of Ludstone CottageSM487

Status: Designated


Where documents include maps, the use of this data is subject to terms and conditions (


Date Added
Last Date Amended
Prehistoric ritual and funerary: cairn (type uncertain); standing stone
Local Authority
ND 22168 61741
322168, 961741


The monument comprises a standing stone known as 'Stone Lud', a recumbent stone located 30m to the southeast, and a cairn about 10m to the northwest. The remains date to the late Neolithic or early Bronze Age (around 3500- 2500 BC). The recumbent stone lies in a shallow hollow, its upper surface on about the same level as the surrounding turf. The cairn is visible as a low, turf-covered mound with a flat top. The site lies 70m above sea level, on a gentle northwest-facing slope, with long views particularly to the west and northwest.

Stone Lud stands approximately 2.6m high and is 1.1m wide and 0.5m thick at the base. The second stone, which appears to be a fallen standing stone, measures about 2m long by 1.5m transversely. One end is rounded while the other was obscured by turf in 2015. The cairn is approximately circular in plan, 9m in diameter, and stands about 0.3m high. A low, discontinuous bank around the recumbent stone may derive from past excavation to reveal its form.

The scheduled area comprises two parts: a circular area to the northwest measuring 26m in diameter including Stone Lud and the cairn and a circular area to the southeast measuring 10m in diameter to include the recumbent stone. The scheduled area includes the remains described above and areas around them within which evidence relating to the monument's construction, use and abandonment is expected to survive, as shown in red on the accompanying map. The scheduling specifically excludes the above ground elements of a stone dyke. The monument was first scheduled in 1938, but the documentation did not meet current standards: the present amendment rectifies this.

Statement of National Importance

The monument has the potential to enhance our understanding of prehistoric ritual, ceremonial and funerary activities, and to provide information about the beliefs of the people who erected and used standing stones and cairns. The standing stone is an impressive field monument that appears to be in its original position, allowing interpretation of the monument in its original landscape context. It has additional importance because of the presence of a second stone and a cairn, suggesting complex use of the site over a period of time. The standing stone is an important part of the local landscape, and it is likely to have been a focal point from the time of its erection and use onwards. The loss of this example would diminish our ability to understand the nature of prehistoric belief and ritual in Caithness and the placement and function of standing stones and cairns within the landscape.




Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland: CANMORE ID 8852 (accessed on 28/04/2016).

The Highland Council Historic Environment Record references are MHG42066 and MHG 2353 (accessed on 28/04/2016).

HER/SMR Reference

  • Highland Council HER Reference MHG 42066

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

Find out more about scheduling and our other designations at You can contact us on 0131 668 8716 or at


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Printed: 20/04/2019 07:20