Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Carn Ddu platform cairn

A Scheduled Monument in Vaynor (Y Faenor), Merthyr Tydfil (Merthyr Tudful)

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Latitude: 51.8036 / 51°48'13"N

Longitude: -3.3997 / 3°23'59"W

OS Eastings: 303583

OS Northings: 212593

OS Grid: SO035125

Mapcode National: GBR YN.XKBV

Mapcode Global: VH6CK.1X1Q

Entry Name: Carn Ddu platform cairn

Scheduled Date: 9 December 2003

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 4022

Cadw Legacy ID: GM570

Schedule Class: Religious, Ritual and Funerary

Category: Platform Cairn

Period: Prehistoric

County: Merthyr Tydfil (Merthyr Tudful)

Community: Vaynor (Y Faenor)

Traditional County: Brecknockshire


The monument comprises the remains of a platform cairn, probably dating to the Bronze Age (c.2300 BC - 800 BC). It is situated within open moorland on Vaynor Common, on a locally prominent knoll to the east-north-east of Garn Ddu. The stone built cairn is circular on plan and measures 17m in diameter and up to 0.8m in height. The cairn has been disturbed, with a large central hollow surrounded by heaped cairn material, presumably the result of antiquarian investigation or robbing; however, much archaeological detail survives. The cairn has several large kerb stones visible on its western arc. The level interior of the cairn on the west, where it is no more than 0.3m in height, would seem to indicate that the cairn is a platform cairn, its current height being a false impression derived by the soil from the central robbing.

The monument is of national importance for its potential to enhance our knowledge of prehistoric burial rites and ritual, social organisation and the environment. The feature is an important relic of a prehistoric funerary and ritual landscape and retains significant archaeological potential, with a strong probability of both structural evidence and the presence of intact burial or ritual deposits.

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

Source: Cadw

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