Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Castell Bwa-drain Camp

A Scheduled Monument in Melindwr, Ceredigion

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Latitude: 52.398 / 52°23'52"N

Longitude: -3.893 / 3°53'34"W

OS Eastings: 271300

OS Northings: 279460

OS Grid: SN713794

Mapcode National: GBR 90.Q44L

Mapcode Global: VH4FG.GZSL

Entry Name: Castell Bwa-drain Camp

Scheduled Date: 17 June 1960

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 1883

Cadw Legacy ID: CD121

Schedule Class: Defence

Category: Hillfort

Period: Prehistoric

County: Ceredigion

Community: Melindwr

Traditional County: Cardiganshire


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. Castell Bwa-drain is an oval enclosure measuring c.78m north-north-west to east-south-east by c.60m overall, on a small hill with steep slopes around it, especially on the south-west where the ground drops steeply to the river Rheidol. The west, north-east and south-east sides are defined by a single bank and ditch; the bank is c.0.5m high internally, and c.2m high externally. Old field boundaries run close to the defences on the west and south-east. The ditch is visible only along the south-east side. There is a simple, slightly inturned entrance on the east and another possible entrance at the north-west. Part of the southern edge of the site may have been lost to landslip or quarrying.

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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