The Glamorgan-Gwent Archaeological Trust
Historic Environment Record

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Caerau Camp

Primary Reference Number (PRN) : 00093s
Trust : Glamorgan Gwent
Community : Caerau
Unitary authority : Cardiff
NGR : ST13357500
Site Type (preferred type first) : Iron Age Hillfort
Status : Scheduled Monument

Summary :
The fort occupies the W tip of a fairly extensive plateau rising to about 75m OD. The old parish church stands within it.

Description :
Large triangular multivallate fort (5.1 ha) occupying W tip of fairly extensive plateau; old parish church and a ringwork both stand within hillfort. Steep N and S slopes both fortified by 3 massive ramparts with accompanying ditches. On E side appear to have been reduced to 2 ramparts in N half and 1 in S half. Seem to have been 2 entrances, one near middle E side and one a little w of S corner; at E entrance ramparts incurved; S entrance flanked by continuation of E rampart of fort. IA and Roman pottery came from interior

Caerau, Ely. The fort occupies the W tip of plateau, with an old parish church within the enclosure which is roughly triangular, 400m E-W and 250m across the base. the enclosed area of 5.1ha has an oval ringwork 35m by 20m in the NE corner, almost certainly a medieval castle site. The steep N and S slopes have been fortified with three massive ramparts, with accompanying ditches now silted up. On the N half of the E side, there are only two ramparts which have suffered more erosion than the others. On the S half of the E side (where the ground connects with the rest of the plateau) the defences are replaced by a single huge bank and ditch, and a counterscarp bank on its S end.
Two entrances to the enclosure, one in the middle of the E side and one W of the S corner, both of which seem to have been originally natural hollows. On the E entrance the ramparts curve round to command the approach, but there is no corresponding inturn at the S entrance. An apex at the W does not appear to be an entrance, but formed by erosion from a spring.
The interior, now pasture, was cultivated in the past and is traversed by two old field boundaries. The curvilinear bank following the N side of the fort before turning S and crossing it is probably a result of cultivation. Both Roman and Iron Age pottery has been found within the enclosure.
Hollow trails later than the defences lead downhill from the fort on the N. On the E just S of the entrance there is a short length of bank with a ditch on the uphill side and a terrace below it. Their function and date are uncertain but they may have formed part of the original entrance approach. (Wiggins and Evans 2005)

Sources :
Brennan, N. , 2013 , Caerau, Cardiff: Archaeological Evaluation and Assessment of Results
Wiggins, H and Evans, E , 2005 , Prehistoric defended enclosures in Glamorgan with recommendations for fieldwork
01/MM Record Card/OS//1961/ST 17 NW 17/;
02/PM List/RCAHM//1976/Glam Invent/No673;
05/PM Desc Text///1965/Archaeol in Wales/5 No33;
03/PM Desc Text//Savory/1949/Bull Board Celtic Stud/Vol13 Pt3 p154;
09/PM Desc Text//Jarvis PH//Archaeol in Wales/No5 p11;
04/PM Desc Text//Morgan Col W/1913/Archaeol Cambrensis/p103;
06/MM Air Photo/Westair//1979/20292/;
08/MM Photo/GGAT/Lewis W/1979-80//;
10/PM Desc Text//S Glam County Council/1974-6/Co Treasures Survey/
07/MM Record Card/OS//1978/ST 17 NW 17/;

Events :
E001455 : Prehistoric defended enclosures in Glamorgan (year : 2005)
E004061 : Archaeological Evaluation at Caerau (year : 2012)

Related PRNs : 94517

Compiled date : 01-06-1977

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