Castell Pencader, Llanfihangle Ar Arth

Has been described as a Certain Timber Castle (Motte)

There are earthwork remains

NameCastell Pencader, Llanfihangle Ar Arth
Alternative NamesMabudrud; Mabudryd; Dinweiler
Historic CountryCarmarthenshire
Modern AuthorityCarmarthenshire
1974 AuthorityDyfed
CommunityLlanfihangle Ar Arth

Earthworks of a medieval motte & bailey castle: a rather irregular, flat-topped mound, about 40m in diameter & up to 5.4m high, having a summit area some 24m across, set at the tip of a level promontory area, or knoll, & divided from the bailey area to the west by a ditch, some 13m across & 1.2m deep; the bailey remains partly delimited by scarps, being generally obscued by school buildings yards, & appears to have taken up the whole of the remaining area of the promontory summit, its circuit describing an irregular, near-polygonal figure, in the region of 72m north to south by 48m. (Coflein)

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. Castle Pencader is naturally defended by steep slopes with streams at the bottom on the north and east and with a dicth on the south-west and west. The height of the motte above the bottom of the ditch measures 25-30ft. The bailey was probably on the west but the area is now occupied by a school. (Scheduling Report)

Gatehouse Comments

Fine motte and bailey. Suggested site for Castle of Mabudrud mentioned 1145 (which may be the same as Dinweiler mentioned 1146, 1151, 1159)

- Philip Davis

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law

Not Listed

The National Monument Record (Coflein) number(s)
County Historic Environment Record
OS Map Grid ReferenceSN444362
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  • Morgan, Gerald, 2008, Castles in Wales: A Handbook (Talybont: Y Lolfa Cyf.) p. 236 (listed)
  • Pettifer, Adrian, 2000, Welsh Castles, A Guide by Counties (Boydell Press) p. 58
  • Davis, Paul, 2000, A Company of Forts. A Guide to the Medieval Castles of West Wales (Gomer Press) p. 38, 44
  • Salter, Mike, 1996, The Castles of South West Wales (Malvern) p. 47 (slight)
  • Davis, P.R., 1987, Castles of Dyfed (Llandysul: Gomer Press) p. 68
  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 1 p. 57, 60
  • Fry, P.S., 1980, Castles of the British Isles (David and Charles) p. 371
  • Renn, D.F., 1973 (2 edn.), Norman Castles of Britain (London: John Baker) p. 275
  • Rees, Wm, 1932, Map of South Wales and the Border in the 14th century (Ordnance Survey) (A handbook to the map was published in 1933)
  • RCAHMW, 1917, An inventory of the Ancient Monuments of Carmarthenshire (HMSO) p. 134-5 no. 400 online copy


  • 1975, Bulletin of the Board of Celtic Studies Vol. 26.1 p. 75
  • Hogg, A.H.A. and King, D.J.C., 1963, 'Early castles in Wales and the Marches: a preliminary list' Archaeologia Cambrensis Vol. 112 p. 77-124
  • Brown, R, Allen, 1959, 'A List of Castles, 1154–1216' English Historical Review Vol. 74 p. 249-280 (Reprinted in Brown, R. Allen, 1989, Castles, conquest and charters: collected papers (Woodbridge: Boydell Press) p. 90-121) view online copy (subscription required)