The Glamorgan-Gwent Archaeological Trust
Historic Environment Record

The following information has been provided under the terms and conditions of access as detailed on GGAT’s website  Copyright is reserved on all data supplied by the GGAT HER Charitable Trust. All output resulting from the use of the data must acknowledge the source as follows:-
Derived from information held by the GGAT HER Charitable Trust copyright.

The data below is intended to be used for information and research only and is not for use as part of a commercial project.  If you wish to use information derived from material held by the GGAT HER Charitable Trust for publication in printed or multimedia form or to compile resources for commercial use, prior permission must be obtained in writing. For further information or to arrange a visit to the Trust please send an enquiry form to

Gaer Hill Camp

Primary Reference Number (PRN) : 00745g
Trust : Glamorgan Gwent
Community : St Arvans
Unitary authority : Monmouthshire
NGR : ST51709796
Site Type (preferred type first) : Iron Age Hillfort
Status : Scheduled Monument

Summary :
Please note that some of the sources contain information that, as yet, has not been included in this description field. This will be updated in due course. W bank of central enclosure ploughed out, S bank in process of being ploughed out in 1974.

Description :
Please note that some of the sources contain information that, as yet, has not been included in this description field. This will be updated in due course.
W bank of central enclosure ploughed out, S bank in process of being ploughed out in 1974.

The enclosure is situated on a hilltop in a commanding position, with good views to south, east and west. The ground drops away from the site in all directions except the north. The enclosure consists two widely spaced ramparts - an outer defence and an inner enclosure. The outer bank consists of a bank, ditch and counterscarp bank, all of which are missing in the northwest quarter of this site. The defence begins to the east of the farm buildings and continues round further to the east where an old field boundary and wall has incorporated the defence as part of the delimiter. Further to the east the ditch becomes shallow and continues to the southeast. The ditch becomes shallower still, with only a faint inner and outer bank. Continuing northwards into another field where plough damage has been less, the system is much clearer with the banks and ditches running north northeast: firstly in a pasture field; and then where woodland has been planted along the edge of the defences, with woodland covering the defences. On the point at which the defences meet the woodland, there is a simple entrance of a gap between defences, this may or may not be original. Within the woodland the defences are in better condition still, with the inner bank reaching a height of 0.7m on the inside and 2m on the outside. Small stones sit on the surface of the banks and ditches throughout the wooded section of the outer earthworks. A trig point stands on the west end of the outer bank, which then stop abruptly at the edge of the wood, with no sign of continuation to the northwest - this presumably due to plough damage.
The inner enclosure consists of a sub-rectangular enclosure, consisting of banks and ditches. The eastern side is completely covered in woodland and the rest of the enclosure is in pasture fields. As with the outer enclosure, the eastern section of the inner enclosure is the best preserved: the bank and ditch steep-sided and well-defined. Within this wooded section the bank and ditch measure 0.5m high (on inside) and 2m deep (on outside) respectively, the former having a boundary fence position on top. In the northeast corner of this enclosure the ditch and bank turn abruptly towards the south into the woodland, emerging at the southeast corner to turn slightly less than a right angle towards the southwest, the outer bank on this southeast corner continues in a lobe shape, ending soon after the corner but manifesting again half way before the southwest corner in a more knob shaped lobe running perpendicular to the outer ditch. On the western side of the defences of this inner enclosure a causeway across the ditch joins the outer bank; a probable entrance. The northwest corner has been slightly damaged by a water tank and the bank and ditch heading back towards the northeast corner begins to peter out. (Wiggins 2006).

In 1995 two post-medieval sherds, including an impressed buffware plate of early 18th century date were discovered at a depth of 0m-0.35m (Lawler 1995).

Sources :
Blockley, M and Dingwall, L , 2000 , An assessment of the archaeological and industrial heritage of the Wye Valley AONB
Lawler, M , 1995 , Glamorgan-Gwent Archaeological Trust (Contracts Section) Archaeological Watching Brief Gaer Hill, St Avans, Gwent ( © GGAT)
Wiggins, H , 2006 , Prehistoric defended enclosures in Gwent ( © GGAT)
02/Desc Text/Cadw/Full Management Report/2005/Copy in further information file
01/PM Note/Briggs CS/1974/Arch in Wales no18 p15

Events :
E001501 : Field visit to Gaer Hill camp (year : 2006)
E001550 : Prehistoric defended enclosures Gwent (year : 2006)
E002230 : Gaer Hill, St Arvans, Gwent WB (year : 1995)
E002646 : Assessment of the Wye Valley DBA (year : 2000)

Related PRNs : 93397, 307991

Compiled date : 02-03-1988

March 25, 2019, 3:28 am - HTML file produced from GGAT HER Charitable Trust Ltd. Heathfield House, Heathfield, Swansea SA1 Tel. 01792 655208; Fax 01792 474469 website:  email: Registered Charity no. 505609
Data supplied by in partnership with Local Authorities, Cadw and the partners of ENDEX © GGAT HER Charitable Trust, 2019 (and in part © Crown, 2019).