Scheduled Monument

Remains of Cromwell's Fort, bastion west of Lotland Place, InvernessSM953

Status: Designated


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The legal document available for download below constitutes the formal designation of the monument under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979. The additional details provided on this page are provided for information purposes only and do not form part of the designation. Historic Environment Scotland accepts no liability for any loss or damages arising from reliance on any inaccuracies within this additional information.


Date Added
Last Date Amended
Secular: bastion; fort (non-prehistoric)
Local Authority
Inverness And Bona
NH 66584 46389
266584, 846389


The monument consists of the remains of a mid-17th century military fort. The remains of the fort consist of a single earthwork bastion and stretches of earth ramparts on each flank. The remains of the fort are now located within an industrial estate, around 250m east of the River Ness.

The fort consisted of a five cornered defensive structure with a wet ditch on four sides and the River Ness on the fifth side. The remains of only the east bastion and sections of the north and east ramparts are now visible. The bastion acted as a firing platform for cannon and covered the landward side of the fort. The bastion stands about 3.5m high with no surviving masonry evident. The banks on each side of the bastion, surviving from the ramparts, are approximately 5m wide and 1.5m high. The fort was built as part of the English Commonwealth's occupation of Scotland in the 1650s. Construction began in 1652 and it took five years to complete the fort, which along with the fort at Fort William, served as a base for controlling the Highlands.

The area to be scheduled is irregular on plan, to include the remains described above and an area around them within which related material may be expected to survive, as shown in red on the accompanying map. The scheduled area excludes the above ground elements of; the metal footbridge and pipework crossing above the monument, all fences and fenceposts.

Statement of National Importance

This monument is of national importance because it is the last major fragment of the fort which Oliver Cromwell built in Inverness to control the Highlands. Unlike previous artillery fortifications in Scotland, this was not an adaptation of an earlier defence but rather a 'text-book' example of fortification design. Slighted after the Restoration, there were plans to rebuild it after 1746 but Fort George, Ardersier was built instead. Since that date the remains have been continually eroded by encroaching development. The remains have the potential to add to our knowledge of the development of fortifications and the English occupation of Scotland which also being the principal relic of this remarkable period of the history of the Highlands.



RCAHMS records the monument as NH 64 NE 4.

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 (see ‘legal documents’ above) showing the scheduled area is the designation of the monument under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979. The statement of national importance and additional information provided are supplementary and provided for general information purposes only. Historic Environment Scotland accepts no liability for any loss or damages arising from reliance on any inaccuracies within the statement of national importance or additional information. 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.

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Remains of Cromwell’s Fort, view across rampart to bastion, looking east, on a clear sunny day.
Remains of Cromwell’s Fort, view across bastion platform and rampart, looking south, on a clear sunny day.

Printed: 20/06/2024 12:44