Oakbank Crannog is one of 18 crannogs in Loch Tay, Perthshire located off the village of Fearnan on the north shore. Dating to the early Iron Age some 2500 years ago, it was originally built of timber, utilising piles (stilts) driven into the loch bed to create a platform above the water supporting a settlement. Incredibly well-preserved structural remains include the remains of the house floor covered with bracken and ferns; stakes and piles that supported the woven hazel walls and roof of the house; and 40 elm and oak stumps marking the remains of a walkway which led to the shore.
Artefacts such as a foot plough, saddle quern, animal bones, fruit, nuts, and well-preserved plant remains provide clear evidence of a farming lifestyle with substantial reliance on the exploitation of the surrounding natural environment. Other finds, such as wooden utensils, fir candles (light sticks) and even a tiny whistle, indicate the loch-dwellers had detailed knowledge of the properties of wood and selected certain species for specific purposes. Some of these discoveries are on display at the Scottish Crannog Centre and in our Finds Gallery.
The exciting discoveries made at Oakbank Crannog provided the inspiration behind the project to build a life-size example of a crannog. Now the focal point of our Scottish Crannog Centre, the authentic recreation was built as an experiment to rediscover ancient technology and gain insight into how our Iron Age ancestors managed this sophisticated engineering feat. Read more in our Experimental Archaeology section.