Ancient Monuments

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Ystradowen Castle Mound

A Scheduled Monument in Penllyn (Pen-llin), Vale of Glamorgan (Bro Morgannwg)

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Latitude: 51.4891 / 51°29'20"N

Longitude: -3.4262 / 3°25'34"W

OS Eastings: 301076

OS Northings: 177649

OS Grid: ST010776

Mapcode National: GBR HL.KJWL

Mapcode Global: VH6F2.KTKT

Entry Name: Ystradowen Castle Mound

Scheduled Date:

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 3694

Cadw Legacy ID: GM228

Schedule Class: Defence

Category: Motte

Period: Medieval

County: Vale of Glamorgan (Bro Morgannwg)

Community: Penllyn (Pen-llin)

Traditional County: Glamorgan


The monument comprises the remains of a motte and ditch, dating to the medieval period (c. 1066 -1540 AD). A motte is a large conical or pyramidal mound of soil and/or stone, usually surrounded by either a wet or dry ditch, and surmounted by a tower constructed of timber or stone.

This is a large mound standing just west of the Ystradowen church in a grass field. The mound is 4 - 5m high, with steep sides on all but the north side where it is barely higher than the outside ground level. Here there is a c. 0.5m drop to ground level. On the west side there is a ditch 4 - 5m wide and 1.7m deep on the outside. There is a gradually sloping counterscarp bank on this side. On the south side there is no ditch. The side of the mound here appears to have been disturbed by old quarrying activities: the bank is uneven, and there is a gap in the middle which leads to a hollowed out area ontop of the mound. This is 11 x 12m and c. 2m deep, and occupies the centre of the south side of the top of the mound. The rest of the top is flat, sloping up gently towards the northwest. On the east side there is a shallow ditch 4 - 5m wide and 0.8m deep on the outside. Outside this is a counterscarp bank 3m wide, with an external height of 0.3m. This peters out towards the north and the ditch stops abruptly where the ground level rises.

The monument is of national importance for its potential to enhance our knowledge of medieval defensive practices. The monument is well-preserved and an important relic of the medieval landscape. It retains significant archaeological potential, with a strong probability of the presence of both structural evidence and intact associated deposits.

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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