Welcome to Links of Noltland

******A fantastic panorama of the site can be found at :


The views were taken during 2012 by Flying Scots Cam and give amazing views of the site and its surroundings from high up above. **************

The Links of Noltland is an archaeological site located on the island of Westray in Orkney. The site contains the remains of human settlements dating from the early third Millennium BC (Neolithic period) up to the mid-second millennium BC (Bronze Age period). The extensive remains are spread out over a 3 hectare area and include (to date) eighteen stone walled buildings, rich organic middens, craftworking areas and butchery sites set within a contemporary agricultural landscape, with cultivated fields and land boundaries. An extensive Bronze Age cemetery containing over fifty individual burials has also recently been excavated.

The remains were engulfed by sand in prehistory and were subsequently buried beneath substantial dunes. In the absence of any subsequent development or farming, the remains at Links of Noltland lay largely undisturbed until the latter part of the 20th century. Worsening erosion in recent years and the collapse of the dune system has led to archaeological remains becoming exposed and ever more vulnerable to destruction. Despite numerous efforts, it has not proved possible to halt the erosion or to safeguard the archaeological remains. A programme of rescue excavation was therefore initiated by Historic Scotland in 2007. The aim of his work is to identify and record as much of the site as possible. This fieldwork is scheduled to continue in 2012. The excavation and post-excavation programmes are being directed by Hazel Moore and Graeme Wilson of EASE Archaeology on behalf of Historic Scotland.

The longevity of the settlement, the scale and range of remains represented and the excellent preservation conditions at Links of Noltland presents an immense research oppertunity. The rescue programme benefits from a collaborative approach, with links to the Universities of Edinburgh, Cardiff and Stirling, the National Museums of Scotland and a number of independant specialists.

The purpose of this website is to provide information about the project and to present the latest findings.