Ancient Monuments

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Penlle'r Castell

A Scheduled Monument in Pontardawe, Neath Port Talbot (Castell-nedd Port Talbot)

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Latitude: 51.7692 / 51°46'8"N

Longitude: -3.9356 / 3°56'8"W

OS Eastings: 266537

OS Northings: 209603

OS Grid: SN665096

Mapcode National: GBR DY.ZQG1

Mapcode Global: VH4JJ.QSSM

Entry Name: Penlle'r Castell

Scheduled Date:

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 3573

Cadw Legacy ID: GM255

Schedule Class: Defence

Category: Castle

Period: Medieval

County: Neath Port Talbot (Castell-nedd Port Talbot)

Community: Pontardawe

Traditional County: Glamorgan


The monument comprises the remains of a motte and bailey castle, a military stronghold built during the medieval period. A motte and bailey castle comprises a large mound of soil or stone (the motte) surrounded by, or adjacent to, one or more embanked enclosures (the bailey). Both may be surrounded by wet or dry ditches and could be further strengthened with palisades, revetments, and/or a tower on top of the motte.

The earthworks consist of a sub-rectangular mound, over 30m long, un-equally divided by a broad ditch. There are traces of at least three drystone structures on the level top, and the whole monument is surrounded by a deep v-shaped ditch. It is argued that the earthwork was constructed in the late 13th century during a border dispute between William de Breos and Rhys Fychan. The fact that Carreg Cennen castle is visible from the site may be significant, but the insubstantial construction of the drystone structures suggests only temporary occupation.

The monument is of national importance for its potential to enhance our knowledge of medieval defensive organisation. The well-preserved monument forms an important element within the wider medieval context and the structure itself may be expected to contain archaeological information 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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