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Gro Tump Motte

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Castell y Dale

In the community of Newton and Llanllwchaiarn.
In the historic county of Montgomeryshire.
Modern authority of Powys.
Preserved county of Powys.

OS Map Grid Reference: SO12349222
Latitude 52.52076° Longitude -3.29335°

Gro Tump Motte has been described as a certain Timber Castle.

There are earthwork remains.

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law.


A steep-sided, ditched motte, c.40m in diameter, placed eccentically within a scarped or banked enclosure, c.122m by 94m, resting on the Severn to the N, sub-divided by ditches radiating from the motte. (Coflein)

Flat topped riverside motte. small bailey bounded by earthbank. encircling dry ditch carried to river at N isolates additional mutilated bailey. motte about 10m to 12m high. bailey 21m wide at w and 5m wide at E. A watching brief carried out by CPAT in 1992 in field 4818 to the east of the site and in the riverside area to the north of the field detected no evidence of Medieval activity (Cadw, 1993). Site has been modified by the racecourse in the C19th and later by the construction of greens, tees and bunkers. The breaches in the bailey bank caused by the racecourse may have obscured an entrance from the west, but it would seem that the entrance may have been from the river on the NE. The ditch to the north of the motte is deep. There is a substantial mound beyond this that may be natural. There is ridge and furrow to the west of the scheduled area (Cadw, 2000). (Clwyd Powys Archaeological Trust HER)

Impressive motte laying to the east of Newtown. The inner bailey is 18mx38m, and has strong defences in the form of the River Severn to the east and north. The motte reaches a height of 9m, with a summit of 11m across. Other defences included a ditch. The outer bailey was 30m x 45m, with a 2m rampart protecting the outside flank of the motte. Probably built by Roger de Montgomery in the 1080s, to protect and administer the important route alongside the Severn (other castles including Hen Domen, Montgomery, and Dolforwyn, in addition to Roman forts at Caersws and Forden Gaer). (Daniel Mersey – Castle of Wales)

Daniel Mersey comments about foundation by Roger de Montgomery are reasonable suppositions but not supported by much evidence. Dolforwyn was definitely not founded by Montgomery (Bryn Derwen Motte, on the other bank of the Severn, may have been). Medieval military occupation of Caersws is possible but not general supported by other authors
Links to archaeological and architectural databases, mapping and other online resources

Data >
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Sources of information, references and further reading
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This record last updated 04/07/2016 07:45:01