Neolithic ORCA Tombs of the Isles

Survey images from Neolithic chambered cairn at Westray’s Vere Point

We were out in Westray on Friday as part of the launch of our Tombs of the Isles community project and took the chance to survey a little known Neolithic chambered cairn at Vere Point.
The remains of the Vere Point stalled tomb in Westray. (Sigurd Towrie)
The remains of the Vere Point stalled tomb in Westray. (Sigurd Towrie)
Orthostats inside the remains of the chamber. (Sigurd Towrie)

We were out in Westray on Friday as part of the launch of our Tombs of the Isles community project and took the chance to survey a little known Neolithic chambered cairn at Vere Point.

The structure was opened around 1906, when “skeletons were found between the two pairs of transverse slabs.” At the time it was recorded that the carefully built chamber was roofless and was subsequently used a livestock shelter.

From the few accounts of the structure it seems it was a small stalled cairn of the Orkney-Cromarty type, akin to the Knowe of Unstan in the West Mainland parish of Stenness.

Aerial view and DEMs of the Vere Point chambered cairn (Bobby Friel/@TakeTheHighView)

The survey was carried out by Bobby Friel and the images produced from data collected with a Parrot Anafi drone at an altitude of 90 metres. The mound and a surrounding undated oval enclosure can be seen in the DEMs.

We’re planning more such surveys for other Neolithic tombs – there are over 50 – in Orkney’s North Isles.