Ancient Monuments

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Old Castle Camp

A Scheduled Monument in Rhossili (Rhosili), Swansea (Abertawe)

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Latitude: 51.5685 / 51°34'6"N

Longitude: -4.2966 / 4°17'47"W

OS Eastings: 240926

OS Northings: 188010

OS Grid: SS409880

Mapcode National: GBR GQ.52Q4

Mapcode Global: VH3MV.GTXZ

Entry Name: Old Castle Camp

Scheduled Date: 22 March 1950

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 3639

Cadw Legacy ID: GM193

Schedule Class: Defence

Category: Promontory Fort - coastal

Period: Prehistoric

County: Swansea (Abertawe)

Community: Rhossili (Rhosili)

Built-Up Area: Rhossili

Traditional County: Glamorgan


The monument comprises the remains of a defended enclosure, which probably dates to the Iron Age period (c. 800 BC - AD 43). The enclosure is located on a narrow coastal promontory above the sea that marks part of the defensive circuit. The construction of one or more ramparts placed across the neck of the promontory divide it from the mainland.

Old Castle sits on the cliffs west of Rhossili about 50m above OD. The north side of the enclosure is formed by the cliff edge which here turns outward to form a blunt promontory with sides of about 90m (to north-west) and 50m. The base of this, 100m long, forms the diameter of a rampart of semicircular plan, which thus encloses about 0.7 ha. The defences are best preserved for about 50m on the east and 30m on the south, where they consist of a bank with external ditch measuring nearly 10m wide and 2m high overall. Another short length, now only 6m wide and less than 1m high but damaged, remains on the south-west. The whole site has been much disturbed by quarrying, so no house platform can be identified; the position of the entrance is also uncertain, but was probably on the south-west where there is a gap nearly 20m wide.

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, layout, 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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