Rennibister Earth House

Orkney Mainland | Kirkwall | Earth house | ★★

[Rennibister Earth House]

This 2,500-year old souterrain (or earth house) is located in the middle of a farmyard close to the Bay of Firth on Orkney's Mainland. The entrance for modern-day visitors is by climbing down a short metal ladder directly into the main chamber - take a torch to see beyond this. There are two good reasons why the original, seven metre long access passage isn't used any longer: it's uncomfortably tiny... and the farm road goes right over the top of the entrance! The underground chamber was discovered in the 1920s when a threshing machine fell into it from above, also revealing bones from 18 different people inside. Slightly chilling given it was supposed to be a structure used to store supplies...

[End of the original access passage]

Location & info

📌 Rennibister Earth House ★★
Off the A965 3 mi west of Kirkwall, Orkney Mainland, G.R.: HY 397126 ///
Always open | Free

[Modern access hatch]


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