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Limekiln, Wallog, Ceredigion

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Map ReferenceSN58NE
Grid ReferenceSN5898285688
Unitary (Local) AuthorityCeredigion
Old CountyCardiganshire
Period19th Century

A roughly square limekiln (Grade II listed) located 80 metres south of Wallog House (NPRN 800163) and Quay (NPRN 800161), on level ground near the foot of the coastal slope. It is raised slightly above the shingle beach at the landward end of the Sarn Gynfelyn spit, with the front wall of the kiln located some 45 metres from the mean high-water mark.

The 1845 Tithe Map for the parish of Llanbadarn Fawr in the County of Cardigan shows a structure at the location of the kiln, suggesting it was in use at this date. Here the fieldname was ‘Slang adjoining the beach’, landuse was pasture, with the occupier James Morice of Wallog House and the owner Williams Matthew Davies. The kiln is more clearly shown and labelled on the first edition 25-inch Ordnance Survey (1861-1895), with a track leading to it from the end of the road by Wallog House and along the quay wall to the kiln.

The kiln is constructed of roughly coursed rubble-stone and is 3.6 metres high and 7.1 metres wide. There is ornamentation around the top edge of the kiln with a band of alternating coping stones which jut out from the main face. The kiln has three round arch kiln-eyes in the north, west and south faces. Each kiln-eye is 2.3 metres high, 2.2 metres wide and 3 metres deep. The voussoirs, keystone and raised detailing around the outside of the arch are of dressed stone. Each kiln-eye is barrel-vaulted, splaying inwards to the draw-holes. All three draw-holes are visible and open, they are 0.47 metres wide and range in height from 0.12 to 0.32 metres above the current ground level and have two stepped round arches above.

On the north and south sides of the kiln are additional lengths of wall (2 to 3 metres long) running back towards the coastal slope, creating the platform and defining the loading access for material that was brought to the top of the kiln. The top of the limekiln is now grass-covered, though the 2.4 metre diameter crucible is visible and edged by large flat stones. There is a metal grille covering the crucible opening and the fire-brick structure of it along with the residual remains of the mortar lining are visible.

The limekiln was surveyed by the RCAHMW (Douglas Hague) in September 1972, resulting in a hand-drawn plan and elevation (Drawing No. 2350(SI). The National Monuments Record of Wales Site File (SN 58 SE (v of v) also includes four black and white photographs taken at the time of the survey in 1972. At this date the southwest corner of the kiln had collapsed. These photos alongside one dating to January 1965 on Peoples Collection Wales ( show additional details around the top edge of the kiln above the coping stones noted above, specifically a low parapet wall five courses high and capped with vertical stones.

The limekiln was restored in the late 1990s, which was noted by Morgan as being undertaken by United Nations Volunteers (2008, 187).

In December 2022 RCAHMW undertook a new survey of the limekiln through laser scanning and UAV photogrammetry. A fly-round of the point cloud from the laser scan survey of the limekiln is available here:

RCAHMW YouTube channel:


Louise Barker, RCAHMW, August 2023.



Cadw Listed Building Description (No. 19073)

Hague, D.B., 1984, A Guide to the Industrial Archaeology of Mid-Wales (No. 34)

Morgan, G., 2008, Ceredigion Coast Path from the Teifi to the Dyfi. Ceredigion Council Official Guide to the Coast Path.


Contextual Information

Limekilns are a characteristic feature along the coastlines of west Wales. They are predominantly of 19th century date, although some were built prior to that, and some continued in use into the 20th century. They were used for burning limestone to make lime for use in agriculture and building. The former through spreading on the fields as a fertiliser and to counteract soil acidity, and the latter to make lime mortar. Their coastal position related to the need in many places to import the limestone for burning, and the culm (coal) that was used for fuel. Proximity to the shoreline reduced the need to move the limestone and coal very far after unloading.

Coastal limekilns are generally round or square in shape and normally slightly wider than they are tall. They have a conical opening in their top, called a crucible, into which the limestone and culm was layered. Openings on either side, called the kiln eyes, connected to the base of the crucible and served for lighting the kiln and to allow air to be drawn into the crucible. After burning, the lime could be raked out via the kiln eyes. The kiln eyes come in many different shapes and sizes, from arched, to flat-topped, to tall and narrow.

Limekilns were often constructed in pairs, with a small rectangular cottage for the kiln keepers in between them. At smaller landing places only a single kiln might have been built. In nearly all cases some sort of ramp was needed to carry the limestone and coal to a point where it could be added into the crucible from above. Many lime kilns are found built against the valley sides within coves or harbours, allowing the access ramp to be cut from the adjacent bank side, rather than needing to be built.

application/pdfTLS - Investigators' Terrestrial Laser Scanning(.pdf version) Drawings of kiln plan, elevations and cross-section. Produced as part of Terrestrial Laser Scanning Survey of Wallog Limekiln, carried out by Dr Jayne Kamintzis, 1 December 2022.
application/vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.spreadsheetml.sheetTLS - Investigators' Terrestrial Laser ScanningMetadata produced as part of Terrestrial Laser Scanning Survey archive for Wallog Limekiln, carried out by Dr Jayne Kamintzis, 1 December 2022.
application/vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.spreadsheetml.sheetPGS - RCAHMW Photogrammetry CollectionMetadata associated with photogrammetric survey of Wallog lime kiln. Produced by Dr Jane Kamintzis and Louise Barker of RCAHMW, December 2022.