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Cata Sand

Isle of Sanday: Orkney: UK, Date: Early Neolithic

A joint project between UCLan and the UHI (University of Highlands and Islands) investigated archaeological remains in the intertidal zone at Cata Sand. Here we found the remains of an early Neolithic house (probably about 5,500 years old), complete with its original hearth. Because the site was built in the sand, animal bone remains survive and we will be able to tell what people were eating. It was a complete surprise that, along with the remains of a Neolithic house, we also found two large pits full of whale bones. These are much more recent – probably 19th century. Recovering the archaeology was challenging because the site is underwater twice a day!

Find out more:
Cummings, V., Downes, J., Gee, C. and Richards, C. 2017. Neolithic settlement at Cata Sand, Sanday: excavations in 2017 Data Structure Report.

Cummings, V. 2017. The Neolithic of Britain and Ireland. London and New York: Routledge.

Cata Sand