Ice Age Hunters and Neolithic Tomb Builders on Islay


Archaeologist Steve Mithen will be giving a public presentation about his latest Islay excavation programme in the Laddie Shop next week. Professor Mithen is Pro-Vice-Chancellor (International and External Engagement) at the University of Reading.

The talks will be on behalf of the Museum of Islay Life in Port Charlotte.  Museum chair Malcolm Ogilvie says: “We are delighted to announce that Steven, who is Professor of Early Prehistory, will be giving a talk entitled “Ice Age Hunters and Neolithic Tomb Builders on Islay” at 7.30 pm on Thursday 27th August 2015.

“Steven is a familiar visitor to Islay having carried out his first archaeological excavation here in 1988, followed by several return visits during which he has excavated sites on the Rinns and, more recently, in the north-east of the island. The latest of these, in 2013 at Rubha Port an t-Seilich, on the coast south of Port Askaig, revealed evidence of 12,000-year-old ice age activity, 3,000 years older than any previous discovery on Islay, as well as older than other Mesolithic sites in Scotland.

“This year Steven is bringing a team to investigate the Neolithic burial cairn on Beinn Tart a’Mhill, known as the ‘Giant’s Grave’, where he will be looking for evidence of transitional links to the earlier Mesolithic period. These two Islay excavations, form the subject of his talk.”

Also attending the presentation will be Dr Karen Wicks from the University of Reading who is field director of the Inner Hebrides Mesolithic Project and the East Islay Mesolithic Project.

Donations in support of the Museum of Islay Life gratefully accepted



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