Update to The Relative Hills of Britain

November 1995

Alan Dawson

This book was published in April 1992. Stocks at Cicerone Press are still plentiful, so a printed second edition seems a long way off. But past and future purchasers are entitled to have up-to-date information, so the most important changes since publication are summarised here. These updates will not make much sense to anyone without a copy of the book.


Most of the updates are the result of new 1:25000 or 1:10000 maps being published by the Ordnance Survey. This makes it easy to spot changes to heights of known hills, but not so easy to find new ones. However, I've had a fair bit of help in tracking down the new entries. I should like to thank E.D.Clements (Clem) for numerous suggestions leading to the discovery of several new Marilyns, Dave Hewitt for discovering East Cairn Hill, and David Smith for suggesting a second Kentish Marilyn. Thanks also to Ann Bowker, Charles Everett, Fiona Torbet and everyone else who has written to me with comments and suggestions.


These hills have managed to convince me that they are entitled to be counted as Marilyns. The drop shown refers to the height difference (in metres) between the summit and the col connecting the hill to the next Marilyn. If there is more than one col, the highest col is used. If there is no spot height at the col, the drop is estimated from the position of contour lines - this is indicated by a c in the drop column.

RegionMetresFeetNameOS MapGrid RefDrop
4A232761Cruim Leacainn41NN 166807150
84911611The Bochel36NJ 232232c154
20B3181043Giur-bheinn (Islay)60,61NR 379728c150
24A261856Beinn Bragar (Lewis)8NB 266433c150
28A4231389Sell Moor Hill73NT 480444c150
30C3891275Mynydd Rhyd ddu116SJ 054477c164
30F3211053Craig y Castell124SH 698162153
31A5071663Disgwylfa Fawr135SN 737847c152
31B4601509Cefn Cenarth136SN 969762155
31C4661529Carn Gafallt136,147SN 940646157
32C258846Mynydd Dinas170SS 761915c151
34B244800Swinside89,90NY 243224152
35A6752215Lovely Seat98SD 879950c150
38B276904Aconbury Hill149SO 505330157
42188617Cheriton Hill179,189TR 197396150


These hills are now known to have less than 150 metres drop all round. Originally I intended that there should be no deletions, but when I discovered Cunnigill Hill had a drop of only 127 metres, I realised that it would have to go. It's very sad to see the majestic Sgorr Tuath and Scafell disappear with it, but there are so many hills queuing up for promotion that I decided I had to be ruthless with anything that did not meet the 150-metre mark.

16F5891932Sgorr Tuath15NC 110074c148
19C5681863Cruach Bhuidhe56NS 125947149
22176577Cunnigill Hill2,3HU 432675127
337142342Hedgehope Hill80NT 943198148
336152018Cushat Law80NT 928137147
34B9643162Scafell89,90NY 206064133

The 15 additions and 6 deletions bring the current total of Marilyns to 1551 - 1213 in Scotland, 155 in Wales, 178 in England and 5 in the Isle of Man. It seems unlikely that many more will be discovered, though it is possible that one or two near misses will be promoted in areas where metric 1:10000 or 1:25000 maps have not yet been published.


East Cairn Hill replaces
West Cairn Hill
65,72NT 128593
NT 107584
Hegdon Hill replaces
Grendon Green
149SO 585539
SO 599574
Lewesdon Hill replaces
Pilsdon Pen
193ST 437012
ST 413011

Nominal Changes

1E6572155Beinn Dubh - Mid Hill (was Mid Hill)56NS 322964
3B7262382Beinn Bhreac (was Mam Hael)50NN 008408
4B9553133Sgor Gaibhre (was Stob Gaibhre)42NN 444674
13B6262053Beinn a'Chlachain (was Meall an Doireachean)24NG 724490
40252828Watch Croft (was White Downs)203SW 420357
42200656Detling Hill (was North Downs)178,188TQ 804586
42214701Brighstone Down (was Brightstone Down)196SZ 432847

Moving Targets

The summits of these hills have moved to a new home but kept their old name.

1D7442441Meall nan Gabhar50NN 235240
58272713An Dun42NN 717805
15A4641522Breac-Bheinn20NH 498950
19A3601181Dun Leacainn55NN 033016
19C5191703Beinn Bhreac63NS 050778
20A304998Cruach na Seilcheig55,61NR 678984
32A3841260Bryn Arw161SO 301206

Wuthering Heights

I started to list all the hills that have changed height but there are now so many (almost all in Scotland) that I gave up. The Ordnance Survey have finally admitted that heights on metric 1:25000 maps (where available) are more accurate than on 1:50000 maps, and they have started to update some of the heights on a few of the 1:50000 maps. Therefore heights are now taken from 1:25000 maps where possible, even where these are lower than on Landranger maps. A complete list of all new heights, including the drop all round (i.e. the relative height of every Marilyn and Munro) is currently being compiled. Some of the more significant new heights are shown below (with the change shown in metres).

RegionMetresFeetNameOS MapGrid RefChange
1D9153002Ben Vane56NN 277098-1
3C9453100Stob a'Choire Odhair50NN 257460-2
4A12344048Aonach Beag41NN 196715-2
4A12204002Carn Mor Dearg41NN 177722-3
4A11153658Stob Coire Easain41NN 308730-1
4A10943589Sgurr Choinnich Mor41NN 227714-1
4A10323386Am Bodach41NN 176651-2
4A9823222An Gearanach41NN 187670-3
4A9092982Leum Uilleim41NN 331641+3
4B10463432Chno Dearg41NN 377741-1
76712201Cat Law44NO 319611-7
812914236Cairn Toul36,43NN 963972-2
9C8052641Beinn Iaruinn34NN 296900+5
10C9373074Sron a'Choire Ghairbh34NN 222945+2
10C9183012Meall na Teanga34NN 220925+1
10C9042966Ben Tee34NN 241972+3
11A10673500Sgurr Fhuaran33NG 978166-1
11A9793212Ciste Dhubh33NH 062166-3
13B9623156Sgorr Ruadh25NG 959504+2
13B9263038Beinn Liath Mhor25NG 964519+1
13B9032962Beinn Damh24NG 893502+1
13B8712858Sgorr nan Lochan Uaine25NG 969531-2
14B9993278Sgurr Breac20NH 158711-1
14B9973271A'Chailleach20NH 136714-2
15A9783209Cona' Mheall15NH 275816-2
15A9273041Eididh nan Clach Geala15NH 258842-1
15A9263038Seana Bhraigh15NH 281878-1
17B9923255Sgurr Alasdair32NG 449208-1
17B9643163Sgurr nan Gillean32NG 472253-1
17E7612497Beinn Talaidh49NM 625347-2
21A6102001Ladylea Hill37NJ 343168+1
30D5391768Mynydd Nodol124/125SH 865393+9

Twin Peaks

These hills are of equal height to a nearby Marilyn but the drop between them is less than 150 metres. It is a somewhat arbitrary decision to include one rather than the other.

2B11183668An Stuc (twinned with Meall Garbh)51NN639431
88622829Creag an Dail Bheag (twinned with Carn Liath)36,43NO157981
17E7042311Cruachan Dearg (twinned with Corra Bheinn)48NM568331
31C205 673Middleton Hill (twinned with Brandy Hill)158SN146118

Near Misses

The following 34 hills miss out on Marilyn status by one or two metres, as they each have a drop all round of 148 or 149 metres, according to the most recently available maps.

RegionMetresFeetNameOS MapGrid RefDrop
1A4561496Creag na Criche52,53NN 986350c148
1C6742211Meall Cala57NN 508127149
2A4651525Meall Chomraidh42,51NN 483556c149
6B6352083Creag an t-Sithein43NO 031658148
73371105Hill of Goauch38,45NO 662942c149
9B8342736Marg na Craige35NN 620973149
10D8962940Beinn Gharbh40NM 882876149
10D3271073Meall Bhanabhie41NN 116789c149
11A11123648Tom a'Choinich25NH 163273c148
13A3841260Sidhean Mor19NG 836740c148
14B9233028An Coileachan20NH 241680148
16A302991Maovally9NC 306693148
16D3361102An Stoc-bheinn16NC 641025c148
16D261856Creag an Amalaidh21NH 759975c148
16F5891932Sgorr Tuath15NC 110074c148
17E3481142Cruach Torr an Lochain (Mull)47,48NM 563402149
19C5681863Cruach Bhuidhe56NS 125947149
20C5561824Beinn Tarsuinn (Arran)62,69NR 930452148
20C4801575Sail Chalmadale (Arran)62,69NR 914401149
27B7862579Kirriereoch Hill77NX 421870c149
27B4311414Garleffin Fell76NX 349988148
27B3231060Carlock Hill76NX 085772148
27C6812234Blacklorg Hill77NS 653042149
27C240788Killyleoch Hill78NX 878820c149
28B217712Ayton Hill67,74NT 944586c149
28B5151690Fanna Hill80NT 569031148
30A192630Mynydd Anelog123SH 152272c149
30C3051001Coed Cwm116SJ 073767149
30D7502460Diffwys124SH 661234148
30F3831257Bryn Brith124SH 664153149
31B4751559Gamallt136,147SN 955709148
337142342Hedgehope Hill80NT 943198148
34B6532143High Spy89,90NY 234162148
37242794Eston Nab93NZ 568183c148

I have compiled a list of a further 172 hills that have a drop of 140-147 metres. This includes seven Munros (Beinn a'Chleibh, Stob a'Choire Mheadhoin, Cairn Gorm, Derry Cairngorm, Mullach na Dheiragain, Sgurr Fhuar-thuill, Sgurr Fiona), one Munro Top (Stob na Doire on Buachaille Etive Mor), one Donald (Cramalt Craig), seven Nuttalls (Rhinog Fach, Cushat Law, Great Calva, Bowfell, Yewbarrow, Wetherlam, Chapelfell Top), five new islands (Soay, Tiree, Seil, Colonsay, Lundy) and twelve hills in the south of England, which badly needs them. This list is available on request to anyone interested.

Corbetts and Grahams

The Lesser Corbetts (Elsies) have been renamed Grahams in memory of the late Fiona Torbet (nee Graham) who compiled her own list of Scottish hills between 2000 and 2500 feet before agreeing to merge it with the relevant Scottish Marilyns. There are currently 224 of them, as Ladylea Hill has been promoted and Beinn Talaidh demoted. Beinn Talaidh is still shown as 763 metres on the 1:25000 and 1:10000 maps, but this point is clearly outside the 760-metre contour ring and does not exist. A booklet including the official list of Grahams has been published by TACit Press, House 48, 170 Sandiefield Road, Glasgow G5 0DL (1.95 inc p&p).

The number of Corbetts is down to 219, as Beinn Talaidh is now a Graham. Corrieyairack Hill, which was never a Marilyn but still regarded as a Corbett by the Scottish Mountaineering Club, is down to 892 metres, leaving Gairbeinn at 896 metres currently undisputed as a Corbett.

Loose Ends

Lewesdon Hill has superseded Pilsdon Pen as the County Top for Dorset. Cheriton Hill has replaced Detling Hill (North Downs) as the Easternmost Marilyn.

Roineabhal on Harris is still standing despite imminent threats from Redland Aggregates to demolish it. Hensbarrow Beacon, Bardon Hill and Manod Mawr are also still surviving man's efforts to remove them.

The world's leading Marilyn bagger is currently Rowland Bowker, who on 18th March 1995 became the first person to climb 1000 Marilyns. His wife Ann is not far behind.

The Cheviot has been confirmed as Britain's boggiest summit, though rumours indicate it has now been paved over as part of a project to concrete the entire Pennine Way.