Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Pen-y-Gwryd Pillboxes

A Scheduled Monument in Beddgelert, Gwynedd

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Latitude: 53.0815 / 53°4'53"N

Longitude: -4.0031 / 4°0'11"W

OS Eastings: 265923

OS Northings: 355684

OS Grid: SH659556

Mapcode National: GBR 5W.9S1Y

Mapcode Global: WH54W.GTZ0

Entry Name: Pen-y-Gwryd Pillboxes

Scheduled Date: 14 August 2006

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 1172

Cadw Legacy ID: CN397

Schedule Class: Defence

Category: Pillbox

Period: Post Medieval/Modern

County: Gwynedd

Community: Beddgelert

Traditional County: Caernarfonshire


The monument consists of anti-invasion defences, dating to the early period of World War II (AD 1940-41), that formed part of Western Command Stop Line No. 23, which ran from Bangor to Portmadoc. The pillboxes are located on and around the junction of the A498 and A4086 trunk roads, where they defend the strategically important road junction at the head of the Nant Gwynant valley, between Beddgelert, Capel Curig and Llanberis. The two northern pillboxes act as a pair and cover the A498 to the N. The southern pair defend the road to the Llanberis Pass and the head of Nant Cynnyd valley respectively. The pillboxes are built of concrete and possess sunken entrances. Locally sourced exterior stone walls and the use of grass banks and roof coverings provide camouflage through concealment. They are regular in shape, but depart from the standard War Office specifications, as they have been adapted to suit local tactical requirements

The monument is of national importance for its potential to enhance our knowledge of World War II anti-invasion practices. The monument is well preserved and has group value. It is an important relic of actions taken against the perceived threat of a German invasion from Ireland. It retains significant archaeological potential, with a strong probability of the presence of associated archaeological features and deposits.

The area to be scheduled comprises the remains described and areas around them within which related evidence may be expected to survive. Each scheduled area is circular and measures 15m in diameter. Area 'A' is centred on Item 'A' (NGR SH 66105 55986). Area 'B' is centred on Item 'B' (NGR 66053 55724). Area 'C' is centred on Item 'C' (NGR 65888 55506). Area 'D' is centred on Item 'D' (NGR 65621 55497).

Source: Cadw

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