Ancient Monuments

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Llancayo Camp

A Scheduled Monument in Gwehelog Fawr, Monmouthshire (Sir Fynwy)

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Latitude: 51.7293 / 51°43'45"N

Longitude: -2.9014 / 2°54'5"W

OS Eastings: 337840

OS Northings: 203785

OS Grid: SO378037

Mapcode National: GBR J9.2BWR

Mapcode Global: VH79N.NSHN

Entry Name: Llancayo Camp

Scheduled Date: 23 January 1936

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 3677

Cadw Legacy ID: MM078

Schedule Class: Defence

Category: Hillfort

Period: Prehistoric

County: Monmouthshire (Sir Fynwy)

Community: Gwehelog Fawr

Traditional County: Monmouthshire


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). The camp is situated at the northern end of a ridge on the E side of the Usk river valley. The hillfort is oblong in plan, measuring 285m SW/NE, and 140m NW/SE, with the entrance in the SE corner. On either side of the entrance, which is 2.5m wide, the bank and ditch are massive. Here the bank has an internal height of 2.5m and an external height of 8m. The ditch is roughly 6m wide, with a causeway across it opposite the entrance. Outside the ditch is a wide bank 2m high with a dished top 0.5m deep. Beyond this is a further ditch 0.7m deep on the outside. The ditch and the outer bank continue to the edge of the steep slope to the W. To the E of the entrance the ditch is 1.3m deep on the outside. Along the W and NW sides the bank becomes a steep scarp 4m - 6m high, covered with brambles and trees. Outside it is a berm 4m wide with a track running along it. Below this is a steep natural slope. The scarp becomes lower towards the N end - 2m high. The scarp and berm continue around the NE end. Along the SE side the bank is 3m high at the N end, gradually rising to 6m high at the S end. At the N end there is no internal height, but this gradually rises to 1 - 1.5m at the S end. The berm is 7m wide, becoming a ditch at the S end, with an external depth of 1.2m. The ground slopes away gradually on this side beyond the berm or outer bank.

To the S of the fort are a series of external earthworks. To the SE of the main entrance a wide gently sloping bank 1.2m high runs E/W. On its S side there is a short stretch of ditch at its E end, 2m wide and 1.6m deep. A bank 2m high on the E side and 0.4m high on the W side runs S from the E end of this bank. Half way along it is an inturned entrance 2m wide. Just to the S is another smaller gap. The height of the bank at the S end is 1.2m. Running W from the end of this bank is a large broad bank 1.5m high on the inside and 1.8m high on the outside, rising to 2.2m on the outside and 3m on the inside. Inside the bank at the W end is a ditch 3m wide and 1.5m deep. The bank curves round towards the NW and ends at an inturned entrance. On the W side of the entrance the bank is 1m high. A scarp 3m high then runs NW towards the SW corner of the fort. At its N end there is a double bank with outer ditch running E-W. The N side of the bank is the outer side of the ditch of the fort, and is 2m high. The top of the bank is wide and dished to a depth of 0.5m. The outer side is 3m high with a ditch outside it 0.7m deep. A farm track runs from the inturned entrance in the SW corner past the E end of this bank and ditch and into the fort through its main entrance.

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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