Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Cefn Cil-Sanws ring cairn

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

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Latitude: 51.7875 / 51°47'14"N

Longitude: -3.4162 / 3°24'58"W

OS Eastings: 302416

OS Northings: 210817

OS Grid: SO024108

Mapcode National: GBR YN.YM7P

Mapcode Global: VH6CQ.QBWK

Entry Name: Cefn Cil-Sanws ring cairn

Scheduled Date: 17 August 2004

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 4020

Cadw Legacy ID: GM567

Schedule Class: Religious, Ritual and Funerary

Category: Ring cairn

Period: Prehistoric

County: Merthyr Tydfil (Merthyr Tudful)

Community: Vaynor (Y Faenor)

Traditional County: Brecknockshire


The monument comprises the remains of a ring cairn, probably dating to the Bronze Age (c.2300 BC - 800 BC). It is situated within open moorland on the north-facing slopes of Cefn Cil-Sanws. The ring cairn is situated on the leading edge of a locally prominent terrace and is circular on plan, measuring about 8.5m in diameter within a stone ring bank 3.5m in thickness and up to 0.4m in height. The bank has a gap measuring about 4m in width on its south-south-east side, where the stones are sparse and have been spread outwards. The interior of the ring cairn is raised about 0.5m above the level of the external ground surface and is largely clear of stone, although there is a modern linear construction consisting of three distinct low straight intersecting stone banks. Stone robbing to create the modern feature has evidently led to the disturbance to the ring bank visible on the southern arc. The monument is clearly visible on the horizon from the round cairn cemetery (GM568) situated on lower ground about 700m to the north-north-west.

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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