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Aberystwyth Castle

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Llanbadarn Fawr; Lampadervaur

In the community of Aberystwyth.
In the historic county of Cardiganshire.
Modern authority of Ceredigion.
Preserved county of Dyfed.

OS Map Grid Reference: SN57988153
Latitude 52.41325° Longitude -4.08946°

Aberystwyth Castle has been described as a certain Masonry Castle.

There are major building remains.

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law.
This is a Grade 1 listed building protected by law*.


Begun by Edmund of Lancaster in 1277 as part of Edward I’s Welsh Castle building programme. The labour force was mainly recruited from the west of England by Master Williams of March. Destroyed by Gruffydd ap Meredydd and Rhys ap Maelgwm in the Welsh revolt of 1282 and cost a total of £4,300. Taken by Glyndwr in 1403, recaptured by Henry of Monmouth in 1409, slighted in 1645/6.
Concentric walled lozenge plan castle with dry moat to W, round corner towers to inner and outer wards; ruined coursed rubble masonry. Remains of Porth Mawr to E with footings of the hall to SW. To W lies the more complete inner gate tower with outer gate beyond; twin apsidal tower gateway with pointed entrance, portcullis chase, crenellated parapet and splayed stair turret to N. SW end has dungeon, mural tower to S side of inner ward. Now converted to recreational use with Druid Circle from 1916 Eisteddfod. Grounds laid out by John Probart architect of Shrewsbury ca 1800. Retaining wall to N has a terrace below, with Victorian crescent shaped 8-bay shelter with ornamented cast-iron columns. (Listed Building Report)

The monument consists of the remains of a castle, dating to the medieval period. A castle is a defended residence or stronghold, built mainly of stone, in which the principal or sole defence comprises the walls and towers bounding the site. Some form of keep may have stood within the enclosure but these were not significant in defensive terms and served mainly to provide accommodation. Aberystwyth Castle is a concentric-walled lozenge-plan castle measuring c.80m north-south by c.45m wide, built of coursed rubble masonry. It has a dry moat to the west and round towers to the inner and outer wards. There is an inner gate tower to the west with an outer gate beyond. The twin apsidal tower gateway has a pointed entrance, portcullis chase, crenellated parapet and splayed stair turret. There is a dungeon to the southwest and a mural tower on the south side of the inner ward. Work on Aberystwyth Castle commenced in 1277 under Edward I; it was taken by the Welsh in 1282 while still unfinished, and was completed (by the English again) in 1289. By 1636 the castle was largely ruinous and in 1637 a Royal Mint was established by Thomas Bushell in the castle hall. Around 1790 the ground in front of the castle was laid out in a series of walks by John Probert; this area is now partly covered by St. Michael’s Church. The castle remains have been much restored and now form part of a public park. (Scheduling Report)
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Sources of information, references and further reading
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This record last updated 28/06/2017 18:13:03