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The comprehensive gazetteer and bibliography of the medieval castles, fortifications and palaces of England, Wales, the Islands.
 
 
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Tir y Dail house, Ammanford

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Old Castle; Castell Rhydaman

In the community of Ammanford.
In the historic county of Carmarthenshire.
Modern authority of Carmarthenshire.
Preserved county of Dyfed.

OS Map Grid Reference: SN62411247
Latitude 51.79411° Longitude -3.99637°

Tir y Dail house, Ammanford has been described as a certain Timber Castle.

There are earthwork remains.

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law.

Description

A roughly circular tree-grown castle mound measuring 35m in diameter and and about 6m high. The top of the mound, diameter 20m, is marked by a wide circular depression 2.5m deep. Traces of the bailey survive on the east where it was defended by a ditch and an outer bank. There is some dispute about whether this motte represents a Welsh or a Norman castle. Historical opinion, including Dr Roger Turvey, favours a Welsh origin with the castle being built to mark and defend the southern approach to Cantref Bychan from Norman-controlled lands of Gwyr (Gower) and Cydweli (Kidwelly) to the south. (Coflein)

This motte and bailey castle is thought to date from the 12th century. There is no documentary evidence to suggest the original builders, however it has been suggested, based on its date and strategic position, that it may have been the Lord Rhys. The surviving defences comprise two concentric ditches to the north of the motte divided by a small ‘horn work’ to the north. The northern ditch is c.15m wide at its greatest extent and some 2m in depth. The ‘horn work’ is crescentic in form and is 15m wide at its widest point. The inner ditch is approximately 12m wide and 4m deep. The motte has a maximum height of 6 - 7m and is 35m in diameter at its base. The top of the motte is approximately 17m in diameter with a flattened area of c.1.5 - 2m surrounding an internal depression some 12m in diameter and approximately 2 - 2.5m deep. The western edge of the defences were truncated during the mid-1800s by the construction of what is now the ‘Heart of Wales Line’ railway line. (Dyfed Archaeological Trust HER)
Comments

Small motte and bailey and not a ringwork as suggested by King who examined the site when it was 'hatefully overgrown'.
Links to archaeological and architectural databases, mapping and other online resources

Data >
Coflein   County HER           Historic Wales
Maps >
OS getamap   Streetmap   Old-Maps   Where's the path   NLS maps  
Data/Maps > 
Magic   V. O. B.   Geology   EarthTools   GeoHack  
Air Photos > 
Bing Maps   Google Maps   Getmapping   Flashearth      
Photos >
CastleFacts   Geograph   Flickr   Panoramio      

Sources of information, references and further reading
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The information on this web page may be derived from information compiled by and/or copyright of the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historic Monuments of Wales, the four welsh archaeological trusts and other individuals and organisations. All the sources given should be consulted to identify the original copyright holder and permission obtained from them before use of the information on this site for commercial purposes.
The author and compiler of Gatehouse does not receive any income from the site and funds it himself. The information within this site is provided freely for educational purposes only.
The bibliography owes much to various bibliographies produced by John Kenyon for the Council for British Archaeology, the Castle Studies Group and others.
Suggestions for finding online and/or hard copies of bibliographical sources can be seen at this link.
Minor archaeological investigations, such as watching brief reports, and some other 'grey' literature is most likely to be held by H.E.R.s but is often poorly referenced and is unlikely to be recorded here, or elsewhere, but some suggestions can be found here.
The possible site or monument is represented on maps as a point location. This is a guide only. It should be noted that OS grid references defines an area, not a point location. In practice this means the actual center of the site or monument may often, but not always, be to the North East of the point shown.
Locations derived from OS grid references and from latitude longitiude may differ by a small distance.
Further information on mapping and location can be seen at this link.
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This record last updated on Saturday, December 6, 2014


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