Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Pen y Castell

A Scheduled Monument in Trefeurig, Ceredigion

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Latitude: 52.4455 / 52°26'43"N

Longitude: -3.9296 / 3°55'46"W

OS Eastings: 268947

OS Northings: 284807

OS Grid: SN689848

Mapcode National: GBR 8Z.M13J

Mapcode Global: VH4F7.TSXP

Entry Name: Pen y Castell

Scheduled Date: 8 January 1948

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 2553

Cadw Legacy ID: CD069

Schedule Class: Defence

Category: Hillfort

Period: Prehistoric

County: Ceredigion

Community: Trefeurig

Traditional County: Cardiganshire


The monument comprises the remains of a small hillfort. Hillforts are usually Iocated on hilltops and surrounded by a single or multiple earthworks of massive proportions. Hillforts must have formed symbols of power within the landscape, while their function may have had as much to do with ostentation and display as defence.

This monument is situated on a slight rounded hill rising from the valley floor. Along most of the circuit the slope is steep and there is a single bank and ditch. A typical section on the north-west shows a drop of c.3.6m from top of bank to ditch. On the east the natural slope is least and here the ditch is rock-cut with steep sides, with a wide low bank on the counterscarp. The entrance is on the north-east with thickened ends to the ramparts and a causeway across the ditch. A second causeway on the south-east does not correspond to a break in the bank and is probably modern. The bank appears to be composed of stone. The rock cut defences on the east may represent a later strengthening. The monument is situated within an area of rough pasture.

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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