Isle of Albion
Recumbent stone circle in a churchyard setting.
Photographed: Monday 22nd April 2013
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Midmar Kirk is a Bronze Age recumbent stone circle, 17 metres in diameter, consisting of five standing stones and a massive recumbent stone with two flanking stones. The recumbent stone weighs in at over 20 tons and measures 4.5 metres in length. The flanking stones are equally impressive, rising to around 2.5 metres in height.

The site of Midmar Kirk was landscaped in 1914AD, so it is far from certain that all the stones remain in their original positions. An outlier sits in the woods to the north, and it is possible that this stone once formed part of the main circle. However, the recumbent is almost certainly in its original position, given the difficulty of moving a 20 ton stone. Similarly, the flankers are likely to sit in their original positions, but the positioning of the remaining five stones is more questionable.

The location of Midmar Kirk within a churchyard is unique (for a complete stone circle), and the initial suspicion prior to a visit is that this will detract from the ambience of the monument. That suspicion is heightened by the well-tended and almost formal setting within which the stones sit. Nevertheless, this is a striking stone circle with a distinctive character. I was surprised to discover that my appreciation of the monument was undiminished by its setting. The church is set in a very rural location, and so against all odds, Midmar Kirk retains a sense of isolation and antiquity. This is an unusual site, and quite rewarding if approached with an open mind.