Balgarthno Stone Circle

Ordnance Survey Map Reference NO353316

The circle looking to the west

The circle looking to the north west

The newly mown circle looking north west

The newly mown circle looking west


Balgarthno Stone Circle, also known as 'Farm of Corn', is a scheduled ancient monument, and measures 6.1m in diameter. The scheduled area has recently been extended to 40 meters around the site. These are my local stones, being less than half a mile from where I live. Lying in public ground just to the west of Myrekirk Road, the circle is easily accessible. The site was under threat recently from a well-known supermarket group, ASDA, who proposed to develop the site, with a 40 metre development-free area being created around the stones. This threat has allegedly receded, as Mike Galloway, Director of Dundee Planning Department, states "We have not received any application to develop this site; if and when we do, it will be the subject of extensive consultation, not least on the issue of the existing stones." Mr Galloway made this statement on the 15th October 1999. The press, on the other hand continue to print stories with headlines like "ASDA approach home-owners" (Evening Telegraph, August 19, 1999) - indicating that the store have already made overtures in the area, (although without having applied for planning permission, according to the Council!). I have tried to get a response from ASDA, but with no result so far. It would appear that they do not want to talk about the proposed development.

    Dr Aubrey Burl, archaeologist, stated "On one of the fallen slabs is a natural hollow which has given the ring the local name of the "De'il's Stanes". When the circle was excavated in the middle of the last century some flints and a jet ring of a late prehistoric period were discovered. The ring is now in the National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh." Recently, the area around the site was extensively overgrown, making the smaller stones difficult to see, and the major stone has suffered from graffiti at the hands of vandals. The top 2 photographs show the extent of the vegetation round about. A complaint was passed on to the Leisure and Parks Department regarding this, and the lower 2 photographs, taken on 13th October 1999, show the result. RESCUE: The British Archaeological Trust are currently becoming involved. Much more needs to be done to enhance and protect this historic site, however, and I shall be keeping a close eye on developments, as I live less than half a mile from here. Watch this space, as they say..... The very latest (May 2000) seems to be that ASDA are now considering another nearby site, so it looks like this battle has been won!

Balgarthno aerial photo (courtesy of Multimap.com)


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