Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Bryn y Saethau Hillfort

A Scheduled Monument in Llangyniew (Llangynyw), Powys

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Latitude: 52.6884 / 52°41'18"N

Longitude: -3.2998 / 3°17'59"W

OS Eastings: 312239

OS Northings: 310867

OS Grid: SJ122108

Mapcode National: GBR 9T.3L8D

Mapcode Global: WH79F.8PXD

Entry Name: Bryn y Saethau Hillfort

Scheduled Date: 26 January 1996

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 3326

Cadw Legacy ID: MG231

Schedule Class: Defence

Category: Hillfort

Period: Prehistoric

County: Powys

Community: Llangyniew (Llangynyw)

Traditional County: Montgomeryshire


The monument comprises the remains of a hillfort, which probably dates to the Iron Age period (c. 800 BC - AD 74, the Roman conquest of Wales). Hillforts are usually located on hilltops and surrounded by a single or multiple earthworks of massive proportions. Hillforts must have formed symbols of power within the landscape, while their function may have had as much to do with ostentation and display as defence. Bryn y Saethau lies in a cleared area within conifer . It is a complex multivallate enclosure comprising a subcircular inner enclosure situated at the end of a ridge, with a further three banks and ditches forming an outer enclosure on the gentler western approach. The site may be multiperiod though the crucial junction between inner and outer defences has been obscured by a forestry track which cuts through defences on the north and south, utilising the ditch on the east. An interior pathway cuts through the defences on the west which may be the site of the original entrance.

The monument is of national importance for its potential to enhance our knowledge of later prehistoric defensive organisation and settlement. The site forms an important element within the wider later prehistoric context and within the surrounding landscape. The site is well preserved and retains considerable archaeological potential. There is a strong probability of the presence of evidence relating to chronology, building techniques and functional detail.

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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