Archaeologists on Orkney have discovered a 3,500-year-old burial cist.
The cist was found intact at the proposed Finstown substation site for SSEN Transmission.
It was discovered just below the ground surface and consists of a stone-lined box capped with a large flat stone.
It would probably have contained the remains of someone who lived in the Bronze Age.
The burial was discovered by ORCA Archaeology as part of SSEN Transmission’s commitment to undertake environmental survey works ahead of construction, should the substation be approved.
Pete Higgins, senior project manager at ORCA Archaeology, said: “Previous survey work told us there was significant archaeology present at the site and we are pleased that within the first few days we have our first major find.
“It is fascinating to think that we are the first people in 3,500 years to look into this structure. We are working with SSEN Transmission to record the archaeology of the site, and this is a great start.”
SSEN Transmission has submitted a planning application for the onshore substation near Finstown.
The substation would be a component of the proposed network reinforcement required to support renewable electricity generators across Orkney looking to connect to the mainland transmission system.
SSEN transmission’s environmental project manager Simon Hall said: “As a responsible network operator, we take our environmental standards very seriously.
“We are delighted that it has resulted in the discovery of such an exciting feature that otherwise may never have been found.”