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The Bargrennan chambered tombs project

Welcome to the Bargrennan chambered tombs’ webpage. This website contains summaries of excavations conducted at Cairnderry chambered tomb and Bargrennan White Cairn from 2002-2005. The full excavation archive is now available on the Archaeological Data Service (ADS) and we are currently writing up these excavations for publication (Cummings and Fowler in prep). These pages are designed as brief summaries of work, showcasing in particular a range of multi-media formats which will not be available in the final publication.

Background to the project

The Bargrennan group of chambered tombs are located in south-west Scotland in western Dumfries and Galloway and southern Ayrshire. Each site has a chamber or chambers with passages set within a round cairn.

This small group of monuments are very different from other Neolithic monuments in western Scotland, the ‘Clyde’ chambered tombs which are found from Dumfries and Galloway to Oban.

While a great deal is known about the early Neolithic Clyde monuments (Henshall 1972), at the time of starting the project, very little was known about the Bargrennan sites. The brief excavation of Bargrennan White Cairn (Piggott and Powell 1949) was inconclusive. After a renewed interest in these sites (Cummings 2002; Murray 1992) it seemed the ideal time to find out more about these enigmatic monuments.

Excavation results - multimedia resources

In promoting the work undertaken at Cairnderry and Bargrennan, we have produced a series of multi-media resources that showcase the results of the excavations. These resources were designed and developed by Simon Hawkesworth , Vicki Cummings and Chris Fowler; and with support from the Learning Development Unit at UCLan.

IMPORTANT: To use this resource you will need Macromedia Flash Player installed on your computer. If this is not currently installed, a free version of Flash Player can be downloaded from the Macromedia website.

Full excavation archives are available from the Archaeological Data Service (ADS)


These excavations were kindly funded by: The British Academy; The Society of Antiquaries of London; The Prehistoric Society; The University of Manchester, Cardiff University, The University of Newcastle and the University of Central Lancashire.

Vicki Cummings
School of Forensic and Investigative Sciences
University of Central Lancashire
Preston PR1 2HE

Chris Fowler
School of Historical Studies
University of Newcastle