Cemeteries, mausoleums and burial places in United Kingdom

The Howff

The Howff is a burial ground in Dundee. Established in 1564, it has one of the most important collections of tombstones in Scotland. The land of the burial ground was part of the Franciscan (Greyfriars) Monastery until the Scottish Reformation. In 1564 Mary, Queen of Scots granted the land to the burgh of Dundee, for use as a burial ground. It was used for meetings by the Dundee Incorporated Trades. Old parish records for ...
Founded: 1564 | Location: Dundee, United Kingdom

Clava Cairns

The Clava cairn is a type of Bronze Age circular chamber tomb cairn, named after the group of 3 cairns at Balnuaran of Clava, to the east of Inverness. There are about 50 cairns of this type in an area round about Inverness. At Balnuaran of Clava itself there is a group of three Bronze Age cairns which lie close together in a line running north east to south west. The tombs at either end are of the passage grave sub-type ...
Founded: 2000 BC | Location: Inverness, United Kingdom

St. Patrick's Grave

Outside Down Cathedral on the highest part of Cathedral Hill lies the grave of Saint Patrick, the apostle of Ireland. By the early medieval period Patrick’s grave had become an important site for the developing church and an important monastery had grown around it. At this time the tradition of the hill being the burial place of saints Brigid and Columcille had been added to the legend of Patrick, giving rise to the wel ...
Founded: 5th century AD | Location: Downpatrick, United Kingdom

Maeshowe

Maeshowe is a Neolithic chambered cairn and passage grave. It was probably built around 2800 BCE. It gives its name to the Maeshowe type of chambered cairn, which is limited to Orkney. Maeshowe is a significant example of Neolithic craftsmanship. The monuments around Maeshowe, including Skara Brae, were designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1999. Maeshowe is one of the largest tombs in Orkney; the mound encasing the ...
Founded: 3000 BC | Location: Orkney, United Kingdom

Blackhammer Chambered Cairn

Blackhammer Chambered Cairn is a Neolithic cairn on Rousay. It is thought to date from around 3000 BC. The structure is a typical stalled cairn, with an interior divided into seven compartments by pairs of upright stone slabs. The cairn has a modern roof, as the cairn originally was only a few feet high. Access is by a hatchway and ladder in the roof, as the original entrance was sealed. There have been finds of bones and ...
Founded: 3000 BC | Location: Orkney, United Kingdom

Unstan Chambered Cairn

Unstan is a particularly well preserved Neolithic chambered cairn, and somewhat unusual, example of an Orkney–Cromarty chambered cairn. Tombs of this type are often referred to as 'stalled' cairns due to their distinctive internal structure. Stalled cairns have a central passageway flanked by a series of paired transverse stones that separate the side spaces into compartments that reminded early investigators of hor ...
Founded: 3450 BC | Location: Orkney, United Kingdom

Grey Cairns of Camster

The Grey Cairns of Camster are two large Neolithic chambered cairns in the Highland region of Scotland. They are among the oldest buildings in Scotland, dating to about 5,000 years ago. The cairns demonstrate the complexity of Neolithic architecture, with central burial chambers accessed through narrow passages from the outside. They were excavated and restored by Historic Scotland in the late 20th century and are open to ...
Founded: 3000 BC | Location: Highland, United Kingdom

Corrimony Chambered Cairn

Built some 4,000 years ago, Corrimony Cairn is a passage grave of the Clava type. Built by neolithic farmers, skilled in working stone, they were the first people to domesticate animals, till the land and clear the forests for farming, their society was cooperative. Corrimony Chambered Cairn was built for collective burials, the beliefs of the builders remain unknown, it is believed these people existed from 3,500BC to 1 ...
Founded: 2000 BC | Location: Highland, United Kingdom

La Varde Passage Grave

La Varde is an 11m long bottle shaped passage grave with 6 capstones and a small oval recess towards the rear. It dates back to Neolithic Age (3000-2500 BC). Originally covered by a mound 18m in diameter and a peristalith. The mound has been partially restored and two capstones are supported by modern pillars. Two layers of paving were recorded above and between which burnt and unburnt human bones, limpet shells and pebbl ...
Founded: 3000-2500 BC | Location: Guernsey, United Kingdom

Torrylin Cairn

Torrylin Cairn is the remains of a Neolithic chambered tomb. The cairn has been interfered with by stone robbing and later dumping of field stones and its original shape and size are uncertain. The chamber is 6.7 metres long by about 1.2 metres wide with each compartment about 1.4 metres long. Torrylin Cairn is of a type found across south-west Scotland known as a Clyde cairn, of which a better preserved example can be fo ...
Founded: 3300 BC | Location: Isle of Arran, United Kingdom

Mine Howe

Mine Howe is a prehistoric subterranean man-made chamber dug 20 feet deep inside a large mound. The origin of the howe (from Old Norse word haugr meaning barrow) is not perfectly understood. Experts believe that it was built roughly 2000 years ago during the Iron Age. There is some similarity to the well inside the Iron Age Broch of Gurness. Its walls are lined with stones fitted to form an arch over the cavity and 29 st ...
Founded: 100 BC - 100 AD | Location: Orkney, United Kingdom

Cuween Hill Chambered Cairn

Cuween Hill Chambered Cairn is a Neolithic chambered cairn, dating back to around 3,000 BCE. It is cairn of similar design to Maeshowe, but on a smaller basis. Cuween Hill was constructed as a burial place by a group of Neolithic farmers. The entry to the tomb is down a narrow passage, partly open to the sky. The main chamber, built on the bedrock, stands well over 2 meters high, and was probably taller before 19th centu ...
Founded: 3000 BC | Location: Orkney, United Kingdom

Barpa Langass

Barpa Langass is a Neolithic chambered cairn, which now survives as a massive pile of stone. It is located on a hill overlooking a dramatic landscape of barren peatland. The cairn is roughly 16 feet high, and around 82 feet across. The inner chamber is still accessible. From the east side of the tomb the narrow passage leads to a wide chamber. It is difficult to judge the original appearance of the cairn, but it has been ...
Founded: 3000 BC | Location: Outer Hebrides, United Kingdom

Macquarie’s Mausoleum

Lachlan Macquarie was born in 1761 on the Isle of Ulva. He later became one of the most recognisable characters of Colonial Australia and was described as “The Father of Australia,” due to his work as Governor of New South Wales from 1810-1821. The American War of Independence prompted Macquarie, aged 16 at the time, to enrol in active military service with his father in 1775. By 1781 he was promoted to Lieut ...
Founded: 1851 | Location: Isle of Mull, United Kingdom

Giants' Graves

The Giants' Graves are the remains of two Neolithic chambered tombs on the Isle of Arran. They are situated within 40 metres of each other, and stand on a ridge 120 metres above the sea in a clearing in a forest, overlooking Whiting Bay to the south. The northern cairn has been much robbed, but the edges are still well-defined. The chamber is 6 metres long, and around 1 metre wide. It was excavated in 1902, and among the ...
Founded: 4000-2500 BCE | Location: Isle of Arran, United Kingdom

Quoyness Chambered Cairn

The Quoyness chambered cairn is located on Sanday in Orkney. It is approximately 5,000 years old and is located on the shoreside. The cairn is about 4 metres high and can be accessed by crawling through the entrance passage, itself 9 metres long. Only half the entrance passage is roofed. A stone platform surrounds the cairn, and when originally built the cairn would have looked like Maeshowe today. Bones from 10 adults a ...
Founded: 3000 BC | Location: Orkney, United Kingdom

Mound of Down

The Mound of Down is an ancient monument which gives County Down its name. Originally the home of Celtair - Rath Celtair - this became a stronghold for the Dál Fiatach, a powerful army who once owned the Isle of Man. It is a good example of an Iron Age defensive earthwork in the middle of which a Norman Motte and Bailey was built by John de Courcy after his defeat of Rory Mac Donlevy in 1177. Originally on the sh ...
Founded: 11th century | Location: Downpatrick, United Kingdom

Carn Ban

Carn Ban is a Neolithic chambered tomb located on the Isle of Arran. It is considered as one of the most famous of the Neolithic long cairns of south-west Scotland. It is of a type found across south-west Scotland known as a Clyde cairn. It is trapezoidal in shape, with a semicircular forecourt at the upper northeast end. The forecourt has an entrance leading into a long chamber divided into compartments by cross-slabs, s ...
Founded: 2000 BC | Location: Isle of Arran, United Kingdom

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Easter Aquhorthies Stone Circle

Easter Aquhorthies stone circle, located near Inverurie, is one of the best-preserved examples of a recumbent stone circle, and one of the few that still have their full complement of stones. It consists of a ring of nine stones, eight of which are grey granite and one red jasper. Two more grey granite stones flank a recumbent of red granite flecked with crystals and lines of quartz. The circle is particularly notable for its builders' use of polychromy in the stones, with the reddish ones situated on the SSW side and the grey ones opposite.

The placename Aquhorthies derives from a Scottish Gaelic word meaning 'field of prayer', and may indicate a 'long continuity of sanctity' between the Stone or Bronze Age circle builders and their much later Gaelic successors millennia later. The circle's surroundings were landscaped in the late 19th century, and it sits within a small fenced and walled enclosure. A stone dyke, known as a roundel, was built around the circle some time between 1847 and 1866–7.