What is a scheduled monument?
A scheduled monument is a monument of national importance given legal protection under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979. Although the majority are on land, a small number lie under the sea.
Over 260,000 archaeological sites and monuments, architectural objects and marine sites are recorded in Scotland, of which around 8,000 of the most important examples are presently scheduled.
Archaeological sites and monuments
Archaeological sites and monuments are part of our national and local identity. They contribute to our history and education, tourism, sustainability, local distinctiveness, placemaking and quality of life. It is a finite and non-renewable resource that contains unique information and reflects the lives of people who lived in Scotland over the past 10,000 years.
Some archaeological sites and monuments are obvious - prehistoric burial mounds and stone circles, Roman forts, ruined castles, 20th-century military remains. Some are less so because they leave no trace on the surface, lie sealed beneath peat or drowned in marshes, lochs or under the sea. Buried archaeology may survive just beneath the turf or ploughsoil, and is likely to extend well beyond any visible remains.