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Castell Crychydd

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Herons Castle; Castell Cicydd

In the community of Clydau.
In the historic county of Pembrokeshire.
Modern authority of Pembrokeshire.
Preserved county of Dyfed.

OS Map Grid Reference: SN26153478
Latitude 51.98425° Longitude -4.53299°

Castell Crychydd has been described as a certain Timber Castle.

There are earthwork remains.

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law.


'Heron's Castle': the embanked motte encloses an area some 24m across, showing a clear causewayed entrance into the banked & ditched bailey enclosure on the west, which is some 70m north-west to south-east by 38m: the earthworks on the west, where the bailey rests on a stream, may represent some form of water management feature (a mill, or fishpond). Motte and bailey castle in very good state of preservation. The castle mound rises 20ft (6.1m) above the encircling ditch. The mound is saucer shaped and the interior is 12ft (3.6m) below the edges. Bailey bank exists on north and south On the west the ground is scarped. Source: Extract from Cadw FMW report, 1950. (Coflein)

These fragmentary ruins are all that remain of a small castle, also sometimes known as Heron's Castle. It consisted of a defensive ringwork, made up of a wall of stone slabs laid in clay, and a bailey. The castle seems to have no recorded history. (Reid 1998)

The monument comprises the remains of a motte and bailey castle, a military stronghold built during the medieval period. A motte and bailey castle comprises a large conical or pyramidal mound of soil or stone (the motte) surrounded by, or adjacent to, one or more embanked enclosures (the bailey). Both may be surrounded by wet or dry ditches and could be further strengthened with palisades, revetments, and/or a tower on top of the motte. At Castell Crychydd the motte rises 6.1m above the encircling ditch and is saucer shaped, the interior of c 24m diameter is c 3.5m below the edges. A causewayed entrance on the west crosses into a banked & ditched bailey measuring c 70m north-west to south-east by 38m, earthworks on the west where the bailey lies on a stream may represent a mill, or fishpond. (Scheduling Report)

Despite the Coflein report of a motte this is a ringwork. The use of clay bonded stonework is moderately common in Wales where, apart from in the North, limestone, for lime mortar, is rare. However, once a clay bonded wall is exposed to rain the clay will wash away leaving just rubble and this building technique may well have been much more common.
Links to archaeological and architectural databases, mapping and other online resources

Data >
Coflein   County HER   Scheduling        
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Sources of information, references and further reading
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This record last updated 07/07/2016 09:03:51