Stories from the Scotland's Coastal Heritage at Risk Project

The SCHARP team are all out and about on the Western Isles at the moment; Tom, Natalia and a small team of archaeologists are in North Uist, excavating an eroding peat shelf at Loch Paible with local volunteers from Access Archaeology, while Jo and Ellie are in Lewis, ShoreUPDATING with new project volunteers and exploring as much of the island’s spectacular coast as possible.

The machair which makes up long stretches of the coast of the Western Isles is particularly vulnerable to erosion, while these islands are exposed to the wildest waves and strongest winds from the North Atlantic on their west. This vulnerability is reflected in the concentration of high-priority sites at risk along these coasts.

We’ve been able to visit a few of these in the time we’ve had on Lewis. The dramatic stretch of white sand at Cnìp is the setting for remains stretching back thousands of…

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