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CASTELL CARNDOCHAN, DOLHENDRE

Site Details

© Copyright and database right 2020. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey licence number 0100022206

NPRN 303152

Map Reference SH83SW

Grid Reference SH8470230656

Unitary (Local) Authority Gwynedd

Old County Merioneth

Community Llanuwchllyn

Type of Site CASTLE

Broad Class DEFENCE

Period Medieval

Site Description A medieval castle thought to have been built by the Welsh Princes of Gwynedd in Penllyn cantref. It occupies a dramatic crag overlooking the Lliw valley, whilst to the south-west it rises above an expanse of upland bog.
The castle is an irregular stone-walled enclosure, about 40m north-east to south-west by 25m. The principal feature is the wreck of a great apse-ended tower projecting from the enclosure. There are traces of two smaller rounded towers around the enclosure walls, but no trace of an entrance. A the centre of the enclosure, on the summit of the crag, are the remains of square building about 8.0-9.0m across internally. This may be the remains of a substantial tower. On the south-west side, towards the bog, there is a ditch and bank, with a 7.0m diameter circular structure set below the bank. This is labelled as an 'Old Sheepfold' on the OS County series 2nd edition (Merioneth. XXI.16 1901).
There are no documentary records of the castle and it can be dated only by the form of the D-plan tower. Similar, better documented, towers at Castell-y-Bere and Ewloe are dated to the earlier thirteenth century. The tower is of superior build to the remainder of the castle and may be an addition to it. The remaining walls and towers are mortared, with the exception of a revetment at the foot of the central tower. The only recorded find from the vicinity is a later-Prehistoric type glass bead.

Sources: Hogg in the Journal of the Merioneth Historical & Record Society 2 (1953-56), 178-80.
History of Merioneth II (2001), 404-8

John Wiles 09.07.07

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