Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Water-break-its-neck promontory fort

A Scheduled Monument in Llangunllo (Llangynllo), Powys

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Latitude: 52.354 / 52°21'14"N

Longitude: -3.2016 / 3°12'5"W

OS Eastings: 318256

OS Northings: 273562

OS Grid: SO182735

Mapcode National: GBR 9Y.SSHQ

Mapcode Global: VH694.G397

Entry Name: Water-break-its-neck promontory fort

Scheduled Date: 6 January 2009

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 4317

Cadw Legacy ID: RD265

Schedule Class: Defence

Category: Promontory Fort - inland

Period: Prehistoric

County: Powys

Community: Llangunllo (Llangynllo)

Traditional County: Radnorshire


The monument comprises an impressive small inland promontory fort, probably dating to the Iron Age (c. 800 BC - 74 AD the Roman conquest of Wales) or 1st millennium AD and situated on a prominent steep-sided W-facing spur above the confluence of the Water-break-its-neck falls and the River Lugg. The level interior of the fort measures about 20m in diameter within its defences, which comprise a substantial earthwork rampart and ditch defining the promontory from the steeply rising ground to the E. The rampart measures about 3m in thickness and rises up to 0.5m in height above the external ditch.

The monument is of national importance for its potential to enhance our knowledge of later prehistoric defensive organisation. An unusual monument, it probably dates from the Iron Age - but may actually represent a small defensive settlement from the 1st millennium AD. It forms an important element within the wider prehistoric context, whether Iron Age and part of the rich surrounding landscape of Iron Age hillforts and later evidence of the Roman occupation; or as part of the 1st millennium AD / early medieval landscape that includes the fine cross-ridge dyke situated at the head of the gully (Short Ditch, Scheduled Ancient Monument RD089). The interior, rampart and ditch of the promontory fort may be expected to contain archaeological information in regard to chronology, building techniques and functional detail.

The area scheduled comprises the remains described and an area around them within which related evidence may be expected to survive. It is circular on plan and measures 60m in diameter.

Source: Cadw

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