Gelli Garn Ringwork

Has been described as a Certain Timber Castle (Ringwork)

There are earthwork remains

NameGelli Garn Ringwork
Alternative NamesSt Mary Hill; Hill House
Historic CountryGlamorgan
Modern AuthorityVale of Glamorgan
1974 AuthoritySouth Glamorgan

A ditch and banked circular enclosure, c.14m internal and 25-6m overall diameter, with a sub-rectangular, ditched and banked enclosure, its N part obscured, c.36m N-S by 27m, on the E; castle thought to have been disused by later 12th C., the land being granted/exchanged with Neath Abbey, 1154-84 (see Nprn18739 - Gelligarn Grange). (Coflein)

A motte with a maximum height of 1.8m surrounded by a ditch 6.0m wide and about 0.7m deep. The top of the mound is 20m flat and defined by a spread bank. (Glamorgan-Gwent Archaeological Trust HER)

The monument comprises the remains of a well preserved castle-ringwork and bailey, which dates to the medieval period (c. AD 1066 - 1485). The ringwork consists of a low mound c. 1m high on the north side and 2m high on the south. It has a low bank all around measuring c. 7m wide with an internal height of 0.5-0.7m. On the north and east sides there is a very shallow ditch. On the south side the ditch is 2m wide and 0.7m deep, with a 6m wide external bank. This ditch and bank continue towards the east and then peter out. In the field to the west of the modern drive a low broad bank 2m high on the lower (south) side and 1m high on the higher (north) side runs westwards to the edge of the field. At its east end it curves round towards the north. (Scheduling Report)

Gatehouse Comments

Definitely a small ringwork and bailey and not a motte.

- 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 ReferenceSS960786
HyperLink HyperLink HyperLink
Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights ReservedView full Sized Image
Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights ReservedView full Sized Image

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  • Morgan, Gerald, 2008, Castles in Wales: A Handbook (Talybont: Y Lolfa Cyf.) p. 239, 254, 255 (listed three times)
  • Pettifer, Adrian, 2000, Welsh Castles, A Guide by Counties (Boydell Press) p. 111
  • < >RCAHMW, 1991, An Inventory of the Ancient Monuments in Glamorgan Vol. 3 Part 1a: The Early Castles (London: HMSO) < > CR8 p. 101-2
  • Salter, Mike, 1991, The Castles of Gwent, Glamorgan and Gower (Malvern) p. 75 (slight)
  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 1 p. 169
  • Hague, D.B., 1971, in Pugh, T.B. (ed), Glamorgan County History Vol. 3 The Middle Ages (Cardiff) p. 446


  • Spurgeon, C.J. and Thomas, H.J., 1978, 'Medieval Glamorgan' Morgannwg Vol. 22 p. 25 online copy
  • King, D.J.C. and Alcock, L., 1969, 'Ringworks in England and Wales' Ch√Ęteau Gaillard Vol. 3 p. 90-127
  • 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