The Glamorgan-Gwent Archaeological Trust
Historic Environment Record
 

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Great House Camp

Primary Reference Number (PRN) : 00942g
Trust : Glamorgan Gwent
Community : Llangwm
NGR : SO4322403341
Site Type (preferred type first) : Iron Age Hillfort
Legal Protection : scheduled ancient monument

Summary :
This is a multivate hillfort of triple ditch and bank construction. It is situated at the north east end of a ridge overlooking the Olway Valley. Before being shrounded in trees, the position of the fort would have commanded good views in all directions.

Description :
This is a multivate hillfort of triple ditch and bank construction. It is situated at the north east end of a ridge overlooking the Olway Valley. Before being shrounded in trees, the position of the fort would have commanded good views in all directions. The banks and ditches are largely obscured by trees, including large oaks and beech, as well as smaller varities such as holly, blackthorn and scub. The steeply falling north-west sector of the earthworks if for the most part impentrable due to the slope of the land and density of vegetation. The southern sector is largley occupied by farm buildings, orchards and gardens. Photographs (grid references mark position from where photo was taken) 1 NE banks SO43350336; 2 NE ditch, SO43330337; 3 Vehicle tracks entering N of hillfort,SO43280344; 4 same vehicle tracks through inner bank, SO43260343; 5 interior, taken from same position as no4, view SE; 6 and 7 animal shelter or hudle against earth bank impinging on the fort inner bank; note trample in foreground of no.7 SO43250343;8 and 9 interior of fort, view to NW and NE respectively, taken from spoil heap in S fort, SO43230334; 10-13 S sector of fort showiong farm cehicles and attachments, earth-moving and tracks (see also no 9); 14 interior, view N; 15 and 16 steep banks on W side of fort; 17 view across banks on W side over Olway Valley.

This is a multi-vallate hillfort of triple ditch and bank construction. It is situated at the north-east end of a ridge overlooking the Olway Valley. Before being shrouded in trees, the position of the fort would have commanded good views in all directions. The banks and ditches are largely obscured by trees, including large oaks and beech, as well as smaller varieties such as holly, blackthorn and scrub. The steeply falling north-west sector of the earthworks if for the most part impenetrable due to the slope of the land and density of vegetation. The southern sector is largely occupied by farm buildings, orchards and gardens.
A section through a typical part of the defences shows that from the outer banks moving inwards, the approximate heights of banks and ditches etc are as follows. For the outer bank: outer height is 1.0m, inner height 1.5m with ditch measured from crest to crest at 16.0m. For the middle outer bank: outer height is 2.0m, inner height 0.9m with ditch measured from crest to crest at 14.0m. For the middle inner bank: outer height is 1.3m, inner height 1.10m with ditch measured from crest to crest at 13.0m. For the inner bank: outer height is between 1.8m and 2.0m, inner height between 0.2m and 0.4m. A possible revetment wall can be seen in places inside the inner bank and the measurement from the crest of the inner bank to the crest of the revetment is about 6.0m. The construction seems to be of earth and stone where this could be ascertained. A wide feature has been cut straight through the east ramparts. This measures approximately 19.0m in width and stretches from the modern road beyond the outer defences, straight through to, but not breaching the innermost bank. The section covering the outermost banks is deeper that than that further inwards and is at present under water, creating a pond. The most likely explanation for this area, at present, is that of quarrying, presumably for the various buildings which exist and have existed at this site.
An entrance to the north can be seen although it is believed this is a later feature. It is considered that the original entrance was where the current tarmaced entrance exists.
A geophysical survey (resistivity survey) shows a possible metalled surface coming into the enclosure from the north entrance, and an inner revetment continuing where the earthworks of a revetment bank have petered out. There is much activity shown in the interior of this camp which can be interpreted in many different ways, but shows for certain that this enclosure has been inhabited over a long period of time. There are also signs from the geophysics that there may well have been stock control within this enclosure at some point in time. (Wiggins 2006)

Sources :
Wiggins, H , 2006 , Prehistoric defended enclosures in Gwent ( © GGAT)
Zienkiewicz, L. , 2001 , Great House Farm, Llansoy, Usk. HE2 archaeoligcal Farm Visit Report
01/Pm desc text/GGAT 67 Tir Gofal/1999-2000/CCW Tir Gofal HE2 data/S17002012
Great House Camp Llansog, Monmouthshire: A geophysical and topographical survey, its description and interpretation :

Events :
E001504 : Field visit to Great House camp (year : 2006)
E001550 : Prehistoric defended enclosures Gwent (year : 2006)
E002623 : Great House Farm, Llansoy. Tir Gofal MP (year : 2001)
E002624 : Great House Farm, Llansoy. Tir Gofal FV (year : 2001)

Related PRNs :


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