Project SAMPHIRE is investigating two wrecks in the Outer Hebrides. One report is of a possible Birlinn the other a sailing vessel lost in 1877, the James A Wright. The story was recently reported in the Stornoway Gazette.
Following the success of the Project SAMPHIREs intertidal survey at Hunterston Sands in September last year we have launched a new, dedicated project, the COALIE (Coastal Archaeological Landscapes: Intertidal & Estuarine) Survey Project in partnership with RCAHMS.
The project focuses on investigating coastal and marine heritage on the North Ayrshire coast between Largs and Ardrossan.
We’re particularly interested in placing the sites we examine in a broad historical and geographical context, sites such as abandoned harbours, beacons, fishtraps and other structures. Much of this archaeology is underwater for much of the time and difficult to interpret without detailed historical research or local knowledge.
If you would like to get involved in field surveys or have finds and sites you would like to look into in more detail in this area of the Outer Clyde please get in touch.
We’re particularly interested in shipwrecks, lost harbours, old fishtraps and other sites and finds along this coastline: we want to hear from you.
Photos from our recently completed survey of the complex intertidal remains at Hunterston Sands, undertaken with RCAHMS. The remains at the site, which include a possible harbour, lie close to the Mean Low Water Springs mark, meaning that we had to time the survey exactly in order to see all of the features exposed. This also meant a very early start but at least we got to see the beautiful sunrise over the Firth of Clyde!
We were fortunate to be joined at this anti-social hour by local historian and guide Isabel Garrett of the Friends of Portencross Castle and local amateur archaeologists Michael and Katherine Scott; fonts of knowledge about this and other local sites.
We conducted an aerial survey this week and will be poring over the photos of archaeological sites on the west coast for the next few days. We flew from Edinburgh and saw some incredible places on the way including the ‘Kincardine Bridge Ship Graveyard’, a collection of up to 13 vessels in the intertidal flats between the bridges. This photo, taken at low tide, shows two of the ships clearly.
For more information see:
Following up on clues from local skipper Kenny Livingstone, we took a walk down the shore at Chuaig Bay at low tide. He had informed us about two historic wrecks that have never been included in the RCAHMS database. Although the wreck on the shore was not exposed we found several parts of the second wreck in the intertidal part of the stream including a well-preserved capstan and a boiler.