Castell Llanddeiniolen

Has been described as a Questionable Timber Castle (Motte)

There are cropmark/slight earthwork remains

NameCastell Llanddeiniolen
Alternative NamesTymawr
Historic CountryCaernarfonshire
Modern AuthorityGwynedd
1974 AuthorityGwynedd
CommunityLlanddeiniolen

Castell, a hill of glacial drift 25-30ft high above road which skirts its N side. The top is oval, c.90ft by 110ft. The N and NW slopes are steep; the E and S area more gentle and have been scarped to form a ditch and outer bank, which are faint where they cross the easiest line of approach on the SE. On the NE a gravel pit has encroached nearly to the summit of the mound (RCAHMW). Mound known as 'Castell' could be largely artificial but the natural hill has clearly been scarped in places to take full advantage of the situation. Around most of the S half there is a marked 'terrace' in the slope of the mound which would seem to represent either a stepped construction or more probably an external bank perhaps with a ditch also. Although generally described as a motte it does not seem entirely typical bearing some similarity to Irish raised raths and small Iron Age forts. There must therefore be some doubt about designation. (Gwynedd Archaeological Trust HER)

A quarry was encroached substantially on the NW side revealing that the mound is largely comprised of coarse sand and gravel which, in this part appear natural. Although generally described as a motte it does not seem entirely typical, bearing some similarity to Irish raised raths and small Iron Age forts. There must therefore be some doubt about the site type/period/form designation given as Medieval/Norman. (Gwynedd Archaeological Trust HER ref.–King, 1983)

Gatehouse Comments

The location is that of a farmstead rather than a settlement and, therefore somewhat untypical for a castle although a number of farmstead held by military service do have small, mainly symbolic, mottes. It is, of course, entirely possible that an Iron Age site was reused in the medieval period with more or less alteration.

- 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 ReferenceSH569655
Latitude53.1677513122559
Longitude-4.14117002487183
Eastings256950
Northings365540
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Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights Reserved
Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights Reserved
Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights Reserved
Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights Reserved
Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights Reserved
Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights Reserved
Copyright Eric Jones and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons license.

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Books

  • Morgan, Gerald, 2008, Castles in Wales: A Handbook (Talybont: Y Lolfa Cyf.) p. 252 (listed as possible)
  • Salter, Mike, 1997, The Castles of North Wales (Malvern) p. 49 (slight)
  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 1 p. 35 (possible)
  • RCAHMW, 1960, A Survey and Inventory of the Ancient Monuments of Caernarvonshire Vol. 2: Central (HMSO) p. 175 no. 1168 online copy

Journals

  • 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 (possible)