Share this story Share on Facebook icon Share on Twitter icon Share on Pinterest icon Share on Google Plus icon Share on Linked In icon Share via Email icon

Scottish history interview - Aberdeenshire's stone circles


We asked film-maker Nigel Scott, of Dip In Video, about his video guide The Recumbent Stone Circles of North East Scotland and his interest in Scotland’s stone circles…

What attracted you to the subject of Stone Circles in North East Scotland?

We (Nigel Scott and fellow film-maker and history enthusiast Alan Short) both live in Aberdeen and the close proximity of so many stone circles makes it relatively easy to visit a large number of them. 


The density of the circles is a striking feature in Aberdeenshire and encourages you to seek explanations for their construction. 

How did the creation of the video come about?
I am a local painter and use photography as the basis of some of my paintings. I also has a keen interest in photography and video and was interested in the visual aspects of the circles. Alan Short is a retired Aberdeenshire history teacher who wanted to find out the current thinking on the subject by archaeologists. The different approaches to the subject complemented each other well.
What research was involved in producing the video?
The creation of the video required repeat visits to many of the circles in Aberdeenshire before focusing on four key ones.

Aberdeen stone circlesThe commentary was based on wide reading about the stone circles but two recent sources, which are referenced in the video are particularly worth mentioning.

• Professor Richard Bradley’s excavations of Tomnaverie stone circle have shed important new light on the purposes of the stone circles.
• The RCAHMS study of Recumbent stone circles by Adam Welfare is a comprehensive study of all Aberdeenshire’s stone circles and up-to date summary of archaeological knowledge about them.

Of course, there are still many things that we don’t know about them, a good reason for people to visit them and reflect on them
What would you say to encourage others to visit stone circles in Scotland
The northern isles, Western isles and mainland Scotland have large numbers of some of the most impressive stone circles in the world and all easily accessible in a small well- connected country.



Visiting many of the sites is a genuinely profound experience that helps to understand a key period in Scotland’s pre-history.

It’s also relatively easy to get to many of them. Aberdeenshire Council’s archaeology unit has a good introduction to many of the best circles.

Watch the video: The Recumbent Stone Circles of North East Scotland






Back to "Expert history articles" Category

24/06/2014 Share this story   Share on Facebook icon Share on Twitter icon Share on Pinterest icon Share on Google Plus icon Share on Linked In icon Share via Email icon

Recent Updates

Inventor and engineer James Watt was born - On this day in history

James Watt, inventor of the condensor, which helped make the Industrial Revolution possible, was born on 19 ...

Sir John Pringle died - On this day in Scottish history

Sir John Pringle, President of the Royal Society and physician to King George III, died on 18 January 1782. ...

The Duddingston Curling Society was founded - On this day in history

On 17 January 1795, the Duddingston Curling Society became the first formally organised curling club in the ...

Restored Mary Queen of Scots statue to take pride of place in Linlithgow in time for Month of MQS

A much-loved statue of Mary Queen of Scots has been restored and will be on display at Linlithgow Museum, as ...

Other Articles

Caithness novelist Neil Gunn died - On this day in history

Scottish novelist Neil M Gunn, author of The Silver Darlings, died on 15 January 1973. ...

Greyfriars Bobby died - On this day in history

Greyfriars Bobby, the faithful terrier said to have kept vigil at his master's grave for fourteen years, died ...

New two-year academic research project will explore how the legend of Mary Queen of Scots has impacted society and culture

More than forty international academics and curators are to join a project led by the University of Glasgow, ...

Seven history books we can’t wait to read in 2019

The coming year looks set to be a great one for history publishing. Here, we present seven books we’re ...