Dun Beag Broch, Isle of Skye

Dun Beag Broch, Isle of Skye, Scotland

This evening, I am focusing on a unique form of iron-age building in Scotland named a broch and in particular, the Dun Beag Broch on the Isle of Skye .

Key aspects of brochs:

  • Restricted to Orkney, Shetland, Western Isles and the Highlands area of the Scottish mainland.
  • Comprise circular, dry-stone  built towers built to a height of some 10 metres (33 feet) and around 25 metres (82 ft) in diameter.
  • Display some resemblance to a lighthouse in being thick at the bottom and narrowing at the top.
  • Invariably built with two concentric outer walls within which can be found a stairway.
  • May have contained several internal wooden floors (varying levels) with a roof on top.
  • Probably represented high status/prestige dwellings with defence in mind. Many are found near waterways which may be relevant in context of communications and/or fishing. The occupants also practised agriculture.

Across Scotland the broch legacy varies between those which have almost disappeared to a few which are 30-50 pct intact. As is evident from the images and videos, the Dun Beag specimen retains the  base up to a height of about 2 meters (6ft).  In its day (approx. 2000 years ago) the structure would certainly have stood out on the landscape.

I usually include a visit to the Dun Beag during my tours of Skye  although the access terrain can be wet and rough going.

View from Dun Beag Broch, Skye

View from Dun Beag Broch, Skye, Scotland