Page last updated at 00:04 GMT, Thursday, 14 August 2008 01:04 UK

Petrol pumps in historical record

Lentran petrol pumps. Pic: Highland Council
Rusting petrol pumps at Lentran Home Farm are listed

Early 20th Century henhouses, rusting petrol pumps and a children's playhouse have been included in a database of more than 50,000 historic sites.

Highland Council staff, heritage groups and members of the public have helped to compile the Highland Historic Environment Record over 20 years.

It has now been made available online and covers buildings and sites from prehistoric to modern times.

Shipwrecks, wartime anti-tank defences and graveyards are also listed.

Historic Scotland provided 10,000 to help launch the online database.

This is an evolving record of information as knowledge is constantly expanding
Councillor Iain Ross
Highland Council

The public have been encouraged to flag up other sites of interest, or add more information to those already featured.

Iain Ross, chairman of the council's planning, environment and development committee, said: "This is an evolving record of information as knowledge is constantly expanding and new discoveries are being made all the time."

Noel Fojut, Historic Scotland's head of archaeology, said making the record available online made information about the Highlands' history more accessible.

Hermit's Castle. Picture by John Hutcheson
Hermit's Castle was built by an English architect as a children's playhouse

The record reveals a region rich in places of historical interest, some of which are now no more than crumbling ruins.

Among the more unusual sites and buildings listed is Hermit's Castle in Sutherland.

The children's playhouse was built in 1950s by David Scott, an English architect who left the area shortly after completing the miniature fortress.

Two separate sets of petrol pumps included are at Brora and Lentran Home Farm, near Inverness.

One pump at Lentran is described as a 1920s hand-crank Gilbert and Barker "Fat Lady".

Two henhouses - one at Belladrum and another at Moy, near Inverness - and a dry stone sheepfold in Caithness also feature.

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