Ancient Monuments

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Ely Roman Villa

A Scheduled Monument in Caerau, Cardiff (Caerdydd)

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Latitude: 51.4777 / 51°28'39"N

Longitude: -3.2296 / 3°13'46"W

OS Eastings: 314706

OS Northings: 176132

OS Grid: ST147761

Mapcode National: GBR K4N.V7

Mapcode Global: VH6FC.Z401

Entry Name: Ely Roman Villa

Scheduled Date: 8 November 1950

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 223

Cadw Legacy ID: GM205

Schedule Class: Domestic

Category: Villa

Period: Roman

County: Cardiff (Caerdydd)

Community: Caerau

Built-Up Area: Cardiff

Traditional County: Glamorgan


The monument comprises the remains of a villa dating to the Roman period (AD 74-410). It is located on the valley floor of the River Ely to the south-west of the river in Trelai Park (a large playing field in the surburb of Ely).

The villa survives as low earthworks comprising a triple-ditched enclosure of trapezoidal shape, c. 120m by 100m enclosing an area c. 0.65ha. Excavations carried out by Storrie in 1894 and Wheeler in 1922 found contained within the earthworks the remains of a number of masonry structures some with hypocaust. The outermost bank measures some 7m wide and up to 1m high, the corners are typically rounded and clearly defined. The bank on the north side is uneven and that on the west side is uneven and discontinuous. The south and east banks are continuous and clear and have a slight external ditch 3m wide and c. 1m deep. The north-east corner of the site has been badly damaged during levelling for the 19th century racecourse which passed along the eastern boundary ditches.

The monument is of national importance for its potential to enhance our knowledge of the Roman occupation of Wales. The monument retains significant archaeological potential, with a strong probability of the presence of archaeological deposits and environmental and structural evidence. The monument forms an important element in the wider Roman landscape.

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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