Tayside and Central Scotland

Hydro plan 'threatens' Perthshire pagan shrine

History enthusiasts have called for an ancient shrine in Perthshire to be protected from a planned hydro scheme.

Glenlyon History Society fear Auch Estate's Allt Cailliche project in Glenlyon will affect the setting of nearby Tigh Nam Bodach.

Three weathered sandstone rocks representing an old man, woman and their daughter are believed to have been used in a pre-Christian ritual.

The society held a walk at the site at the weekend to highlight its campaign.

BBC Scotland's news website has been unable to get a comment from the owners of Auch Estate at this stage on the hydro project and the opposition to it.

The three stones are placed in a stone walled shelter, called a sheiling, in winter and taken outside in spring in a ritual that could be linked to encouraging good weather.

Colin Wilson, of the Glenlyon History Society, said Tigh Nam Bodach was not a protected site.

He said: "What we would like to see happen is a site like this being especially considered in terms of the environmental impact of the scheme.

"Unfortunately it can be overlooked because it is not a scheduled monument.

"It is noted by Historic Scotland but is not scheduled yet."

According to the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland's (RCAHMS) Canmore database the site is a simple pagan shrine.

Quoting records and writing from 1888, 1967 and 1979, RCAHMS reported the shrine had parallels to rituals at an early temple in France.

In 1979, it was reported that a local gamekeeper took the figures out from the sheiling each spring.

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