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Latitude: 53.3053 / 53°18'19"N
Longitude: -4.6839 / 4°41'2"W
OS Eastings: 221265
OS Northings: 382064
OS Grid: SH212820
Mapcode National: GBR GMTY.THD
Mapcode Global: WH31B.05VY
Entry Name: Holyhead Mountain Hut Circles
Source ID: 2512
Cadw Legacy ID: AN016
Schedule Class: Domestic
Category: Unenclosed hut circle settlement
County: Isle of Anglesey (Ynys Môn)
Traditional County: Anglesey
The monument consists of an area of later prehistoric settlement features, generally stone founded roundhouses, occupying a natural shelf or terrace below the south-eastern flank of Holyhead Mountain. The scheduled area occupies some 8 ha of a 25 m-wide natural terrace which contains a series of stone-built structures. These structures are of two main types: round huts and sub-rectangular chambers. There are 13 round huts, some with entrance passages, varying in diameter from 3.8 m to 8 m. They are clearly visible and have been cleared of overlying vegetation and consolidated for public display. The walls are of dry-stone construction with few orthostats and are generally 0.5 - 1 m high and 1 - 1.25 m wide.
The rectangular structures vary between 4 m and 4.75 m long, 1.25 and 1.9 m wide, and are about 1 m deep. They are part sunken, with rounded corners, and, with one exception, are also of dry, laid stone, as opposed to orthostatic, construction. The exception (Hut L) is largely of orthostatic construction, the stones lining the inner face being 1.25 m high. One of the structures (Hut N) is 2.25 m square, the walls are 0.7 m high, and a large paving slab can be seen at the rear. The round huts have their entrances on the south east side, whereas the rectangular structures tend to have an entrance on the north-north-west side, the exception again being Hut L which faces east-north-east.
The remains of a terraced field system can be seen underlying the present fields on the slopes below the settlement. To the north, on the slopes above the settlement, is a complex of field boundaries which could also be associated with this settlement. These lie entirely outside the scheduled area.
The site has been excavated on three occasions, by W O Stanley in the 1860s, by the Office of Works in 1912-13, and by the Welsh Office during the years 1978-82. The most important results to come out of the last excavations were the dating of the settlement to the late first millennium BC, with evidence of activity on the site from the late third millennium BC and also the first century AD. It has also been shown that, rather than being an open settlement, it was a cluster of homesteads with enclosures, interspersed with isolated huts.
The monument is of national importance for its potential to enhance our knowledge of later prehistoric defensive organisation and settlement. It retains significant archaeological potential, with a strong probability of the presence of associated archaeological features and deposits. The structures may be expected to contain archaeological information concerning chronology and building techniques, together with a strong probability of environmental evidence.
The scheduled area comprises the remains described and an area around them within which related evidence may be expected to survive.
Other nearby scheduled monuments