Ancient Monuments

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Pencastell Hillfort

A Scheduled Monument in Trelech (Tre-lech), Carmarthenshire (Sir Gaerfyrddin)

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Latitude: 51.932 / 51°55'55"N

Longitude: -4.5364 / 4°32'11"W

OS Eastings: 225716

OS Northings: 228986

OS Grid: SN257289

Mapcode National: GBR D4.NKFJ

Mapcode Global: VH2NJ.BP4S

Entry Name: Pencastell Hillfort

Scheduled Date: 12 July 2005

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 1570

Cadw Legacy ID: CM295

Schedule Class: Defence

Category: Hillfort

Period: Prehistoric

County: Carmarthenshire (Sir Gaerfyrddin)

Community: Trelech (Tre-lech)

Traditional County: Carmarthenshire


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). 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. Pencastell hillfort is a well defended multivallate hillfort which occupies the entire length of a short triangular shaped promontory overlooking the Afon Asen. The hillfort is defined by three lines of defensive ramparts which survive today in good condition to heights of 1.5m or more. The hillfort measures c. 160m across but since the ramparts account for over 90m this makes the actual interior quite small, no larger than 70m by 30m in size.

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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