Ancient Monuments

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Aberyscir Castle Mound

A Scheduled Monument in Yscir (Ysgir), Powys

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Latitude: 51.9555 / 51°57'19"N

Longitude: -3.456 / 3°27'21"W

OS Eastings: 300038

OS Northings: 229561

OS Grid: SO000295

Mapcode National: GBR YL.LWYH

Mapcode Global: VH6BY.13SQ

Entry Name: Aberyscir Castle Mound

Scheduled Date:

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 807

Cadw Legacy ID: BR021

Schedule Class: Defence

Category: Motte

Period: Medieval

County: Powys

Community: Yscir (Ysgir)

Traditional County: Brecknockshire


The monument comprises the remains of a motte and ditch, dating to the medieval period (c. 1066 -1540 AD). The Motte is located on a spur of land that projects out towards the River Usk, is roughly teardrop-shaped in plan with steep sides and a flat summit that measures 20m NE/SW by 30m NW/SE. The sides of the motte on the S and W sides are natural and fall to the river level below, but on the N and E sides is a large ditch, around 10m wide and 5m deep, with a slight bank on the outside. On the S side of the motte are the remains of a substantial masonry wall, 10m long and 2m wide, standing up to 2m high on the outside and 1m high on the inside. Most of the facing stones have been lost, with the rubble core visible along the full length. A slight external batter to the wall can be identified. This is likely to be 12th or 13th century in date and possibly the remains of a large shell keep or small inner ward. The wall turns 90 degrees at the southern end of the motte and in the apex of the bend are the remains of a semi-circular wall standing around 3m high. The wall is 0.4 thick and sits on top of the medieval masonry. The walls is faced, with each end carefully finished with facing stones, which suggests that the structure never formed a circuit and was designed to be free-standing. The motte appears to have been landscaped, with the planting of a yew tree shelter belt and the construction of a path up to the summit from the gardens of the Georgian house, and the extant semi-circular wall is probably associated with these works rather than the remains of a medieval tower. The wall may have been built as a folly to mimic a ruined tower.

The monument is of national importance for its potential to enhance our knowledge of medieval defensive practices. The monument is well-preserved and an important relic of the medieval landscape. It retains significant archaeological potential, with a strong probability of the presence of both structural evidence and intact associated deposits.

The scheduled area comprises the remains described and areas around them within which related evidence may be expected to survive.

Source: Cadw

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