Early Settlers

Explore new evidence about how early people lived and settled in the rich and resource filled landscape at the junction of the Rivers Tay and Earn.

Archaeological evidence discovered as part of the Tay Landscape Partnership’s Early Settlers Project (2014-2017) has revealed that some of the region’s earliest inhabitants were settling by the riverside near Bridge of Earn in the late Mesolithic period (8,400-4,000 cal BC). An army of volunteers, including local Primary school children, braved cold wintry days over several seasons to reveal hundreds of tiny stone tools spread across fields near the junction of the River Earn with the River Tay. These microlithic artefacts, some smaller than a centimetre in length, were once used by the Mesolithic settlers as part of their ‘tool kit’ for hunting animals and processing their meat and hides.

The Early Settlers Project’s discoveries are really significant because very few Mesolithic sites have been found in Perth and Kinross and this evidence helps us to better understand how people were living in the Tay Landscape area so long ago.

Click here to read the full report on the findings or download it from Archaeology Reports Online

Postglacial shoreline map

Explore new evidence about how early people lived and settled in this place, the junction of the Rivers Tay and Earn providing a rich and resource filled landscape.

Settle Petal

Settle Petal by Alfie Pound

Read about early inhabitants of the Tay valley in the graphic novel Settle Petal.

Placenames Reports



Find out more about the early inhabitants of Scotland on the Scottish Archaeological Research