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Llangynwyd Castle

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Tir yr Iarll; Tyriartlh; Tyryartlh; Castell Coch; Llangwynyd; Llangennydd; Llangeneu; Landguned

In the community of Llangynwyd Middle.
In the historic county of Glamorgan.
Modern authority of Bridgend.
Preserved county of Mid Glamorgan.

OS Map Grid Reference: SS85178866
Latitude 51.58511° Longitude -3.65879°

Llangynwyd Castle has been described as a certain Timber Castle, and also as a certain Masonry Castle.

There are masonry footings remains.

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law.


At Llangynwyd the remains of a once splendid medieval fortress are now reduced to scanty ruins and earthworks. The castle was the centre for the upland lordship of the lords of Glamorgan in Gorfynydd cantref, thought to have been annexed by 1147. It is first mentioned in 1246, but is thought to be a twelfth century foundation. The castle was devastated in 1257 and was subsequently rebuilt. It was burned in the riots of 1294-5 and does not appear to have been restored. The site was partially excavated in 1906. The castle occupies the tip of a steep sided spur between two streams and consists of a heart shaped walled inner court some 35-37m across set at the south-east end of a larger outer court. The inner court had a mighty rock-cut ditch, except on the north-east, with a great counterscarp bank on the west and south sides. The outer court is some 80-90m deep and was enclosed by a 120m arc of rampart and ditch. The wall of the inner court is quite poorly constructed and may pre-date the devastation of 1257. A great twin-towered gatehouse facing into the outer court was probably added in the 1260s and has been compared to the great gatehouse at Caerphilly Castle. A D-shaped tower, built in a similar style, was added a little to the north of the gatehouse. (Coflein–ref. RCAHMW, 1991)

Seems to have begun as a medieval ringwork, later provided with a stone curtain and twin-towered gatehouse. Little masonry is visible though the uneven interior suggests collapsed stone buildings. Some courses of gatehouse towers survive. (Glamorgan-Gwent Archaeological Trust HER)

The monument comprises the masonry and earthwork remains of a medieval castle, occupying a strong position on the promontory above the confluence of two streams. The castle is thought to date from the thirteenth century AD, although the earthwork upon which it stands may well be earlier. The outer enclosure probably represents an associated bailey. The castle comprises an impressive gatehouse (probably built c. 1262-3), partially surviving curtain wall and the visible footings of several buildings within. The area covered by the original designation did not relate accurately to the remains on the ground and the scheduled area has been revised in order to rectify the original designation. (Scheduling Report)
Links to archaeological and architectural databases, mapping and other online resources

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Sources of information, references and further reading
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This record last updated 06/07/2016 17:31:57