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Maen Hir cairn cemetery

A Scheduled Monument in Rhayader (Rhaeadr Gwy), Powys

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Coordinates

Latitude: 52.3696 / 52°22'10"N

Longitude: -3.6794 / 3°40'45"W

OS Eastings: 285760

OS Northings: 275944

OS Grid: SN857759

Mapcode National: GBR 99.RW6S

Mapcode Global: VH5C7.5PQT

Entry Name: Maen Hir cairn cemetery

Scheduled Date: 7 August 2006

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 4253

Cadw Legacy ID: MG322

Schedule Class: Religious, Ritual and Funerary

Category: Kerb cairn

Period: Prehistoric

County: Powys

Community: Rhayader (Rhaeadr Gwy)

Traditional County: Montgomeryshire

Description

The monument comprises the remains of a cairn cemetery, probably dating to the Bronze Age (c.2300 BC - 800 BC) and situated within open moorland on a prominent terrace on the SW-facing flanks of Glan Fedwen. The cemetery is situated at the head of the Cwm Ystwyth valley and was certainly deliberately positioned to overlook this important route. The cemetery comprises the remains of at least four cairns, one of which is a massive and very well-preserved kerb cairn, measuring 18.5m in diameter and up to 1.3m in height. The remaining cairns are small satellites of the kerb cairn and range in size from 3m to 5m in diameter and stand up to 0.3m in height.

The monument is of national importance for its potential to enhance our knowledge of prehistoric burial and ritual. The monument is an important and unusual relic of a prehistoric funerary and ritual landscape and retains significant archaeological potential, with a strong probability of the presence of both intact burial or ritual deposits and environmental and structural evidence, including buried prehistoric land surfaces. The association of the cemetery with further similar monuments nearby - such as the cairn cemetery on Craig y Lluest to the W [MG321] and the Cistfaen cairns to the NE [RD209 and RD210] - and with the important Cwm Ystwyth valley, with evidence of contemporary Bronze Age copper mining activity on Copa Hill, further enhances its importance and archaeological potential.

The area scheduled comprises the remains described and an area around them within which related evidence may be expected to survive. It is circular and measures about 80m in diameter.

Source: Cadw

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