Llanelli New Castle

Has been described as a Possible Uncertain

There are no visible remains

NameLlanelli New Castle
Alternative NamesPen y Castell, Llanelly
Historic CountryCarmarthenshire
Modern AuthorityCarmarthenshire
1974 AuthorityDyfed

There may have been a castle here. A stone successor to Llanelli Old Castle. (King)

Thought to be the location of fortification within Llanelli. Variously described on mapping as 'Old castle', 'Ancient Camp' and 'Old Roman Camp'. RJ 2003 (Dyfed Archaeological Trust HER record of medieval motte)

Note by Colonel W. LL Morgan:—This is without doubt the Castle of Carnwillion destroyed by Rhys Grug in his attack upon Kidwelly and Gower in 1215.

None of the moated mounds destroyed by him in the campaign were afterwards restored, their places being taken by stone castles. It is very unlikely that this was an exception, but that most probably it was never restored. At the same time Carnwillion could hardly have been left without a castle, though there is no mention of it again in history, or of a Castle of Llanelly. In the map of the Stepney estate, 1761, is shown the site of “Old Castle” in the park (now built over) of Llanelly House. At the corner of the present St. John's Street until a few years ago were traces of earthworks, variously described, but most of the old people agree that they were the remains of the angle of a rectangular enclosure, probably the last remains of the medieval Castle of Llanelly. (RCAHMW 1917)

Gatehouse Comments

Part of what may be a square ditch is shown on the six-inch OS map of 1878 south of John Street. It is quite unclear what was at this location. It unclear the reason David King thought they may have been a masonry castle here, which does not seem to fit the scant descriptions, unless he was referring to something else. The scant marks on the OS map do suggest a small moated site of medieval date rather than anything else. It should also be noted there is some doubt as to mound in a reservoir usually considered to be the documented castle of Llanelli (Lanelli Old Castle) and this site may have been that castle. There does not seem to be any evidence that there were definitely two castles in Llanelli.

- Philip Davis

Not scheduled

Not Listed

County Historic Environment Record
OS Map Grid ReferenceSN505003
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  • Davis, Paul, 2000, A Company of Forts. A Guide to the Medieval Castles of West Wales (Gomer Press)
  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 1 p. 60
  • RCAHMW, 1917, An inventory of the Ancient Monuments of Carmarthenshire (HMSO) p. 119 no. 349n online copy
  • Lewis, Samual, 1849, A Topographical Dictionary of Wales online copy (as 'vestige of an old british fortification')