The Glamorgan-Gwent Archaeological Trust
Historic Environment Record
 

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GRAIG FAWR CHAMBER TOMB

Primary Reference Number (PRN) : 00924w
Trust : Glamorgan Gwent
Site Type : Chambered tomb
Period : Neolithic
Community : Pontardulais
NGR : SN60850620
Legal Protection : scheduled ancient monument

Summary :
This monument appears most likely to be a single chambered tomb consisting of two chambers with multiple compartments, and no visible traces of the mound remaining. The other possibility is that is a pair of chambered tombs, as at Sweyne's Howes on Rhos

Description :
This monument appears most likely to be a single chambered tomb consisting of two chambers with multiple compartments, and no visible traces of the mound remaining. The other possibility is that is a pair of chambered tombs, as at Sweyne's Howes on Rhossili Down (PRNs 121w, 122w), but the two parts are much closer together (only 3m apart), which would not give adequate room for separate mounds.
Chamber A, to the SW (NGR SN6684206209), measures 4.6x2.9m by 0.6m high, and consists of five upright sandstone slabs, c 0.2m thick, forming the outline of two chambers. The W compartment (c2.3x2.1m) is defined on the N side by a slab 1.85x0.55m the W side is defined only at its N end, by a slab 0.4m wide; the E side by two slabs 0.9m and 0.8m wide and both 0.6m high, with a gap between them; nothing survives of the S side. The E compartment is represented only by its W side (= W compartment's E side) and a single slab which meets it at right angles part way down the more southerly of the two slabs of which it is composed - it is not possible to ascertain original size. A large flat kite-shaped slab 1.6x0.95m lies on the ground to the W of the W compartment. There is a scatter of stone around.
Chamber B, to the NE (NGR SN6084906211), is formed from slabs of stone which are mostly thinner (c0.1m) than those of Chamber A, but generally standing about the same height above present ground level (0.6m). It measures 6.5x3.8m overall. It has traces of three possible compartments arranged N-S. The N end consists of two touching and overlapping upright slabs 0.9m long; these are 2.7m N of the next upright slab which seems to form the E end of the S side of the N compartment (=N side of middle compartment) - this slab has been displaced from the vertical and is now leaning. The S side of this compartment (= N side of S compartment) is represented by a 1.0m wide slab (double like that at the N end of the monument) at its E side, with another slab, 1.2m wide, forming the E side of the NE corner of the S compartment. The largest upright slab, 1.8m long and c0.2m thick stands SE of this corner, on a NW-SE alignment; possibly the capstone. The monument has been dug out to the N of the possible capstone and W of the remains of the central compartment.
The monument is situated on the SE arm of Graig Fawr, just below the ridge crest and with a view of Gower and the Carmarthen coast. The chambers have been used as a dump for post-medieval household rubbish >12.4m N-S x >5.0m; 0.6m high GGAT 72 Prehistoric Funerary and Ritual Sites survey 2001. Reported by Alan Richards of Pontardulais, 01792 883426. Site visit revealed what appear to be two small chambered tombs with capstones removed, both appear to have two distinct chambers. The northern of the two has one orthostat chamber and a second of drystone walling. There is fragmentary evidence of mounds around both features. At the time of the visit both features were littered with broken glass, crockery and cast iron fragments, suggesting that they had been used as a dump, perhaps in the 19th century.
(1997) The site is located on gently sloping open heathland on Graig Fawr to the north of the remains of the now deserted farms of Maenor - Deilo and Gareg - llwyd. The site comprises the extant remains of two chambered tombs set approximately 3m apart. The tombs have been damaged but are clearly recognisable as Neolithic chambered tombs. There are stones missing , which have probably been removed to construct the dry stone walls of nearby farms. The covering cairn or cairns are no longer present.
Tomb A : This lies to the S and consists of five large upright stone slabs and a large horizontal slab which could have been a capstone. The tomb appears to have had two interconnectedchambers, the larger , more complete to the NW measuring 1.75m x 1.35m . The other chamber is incomplete , stones possibly having been removed in construction of nearby dry stone walls. It is likely that the large stone slab lying to the W of the main chamber could have been the capstone.
Tomb B : Situated approx. 3.1m to the NE of Tomb A . This has two chambers, the eastern measuring approx. 2m by 1.5m is constructed from upright stones and the NW ( 1.5m wide ) from rubble blocks in the manner of dry stone walling. This latter chamber is filled with stones, some of which are likely to have originally formed parts of the walls but others the result of later use of the tomb for stone dumping. It is possible that the two cists were created at different times during separate burial events. The whole site is covered with debris, including sherds of 19th century pottery suggesting that the site has been used as a dumping ground from material in the past, possibly from the nearby , now derelict farms. ( Source 03 )

Sources :
01/ PM list/ CBA/// 1977/ Mesolithic survey/
02/ PM Desc text// Savory/ HN/ 1966/ Morgannwg/ Vol 10, p 53
03/ MM Desc text/ CADW/ Roberts/ K/ 1997/ AM 107

Events :

Related PRNs :


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