Historic Landscape Characterisation

Arfon - Area 36 Unenclosed mountain (north Carneddau)

© Crown copyright. All rights reserved, Gwynedd Archaeological Trust, 100017916, 2005

Historic background

A vast area of mountainside including several of the highest peaks in north Wales forming its southern boundary, some of which have prehistoric summit cairns. It remains unenclosed currently, but in the river valleys (e.g. Afon Caseg, Cwm yr Afon Goch) there is considerable evidence for prehistoric settlement and agriculture in the form of hut groups and associated series of paddocks or fields. These are some of the finest relict archaeological sites and landscapes in north Wales. This area is, in fact, a continuation of area 2019 described in characterisation report 318 (project G1527).

There are also (medieval) deserted rural settlements in the lower parts of the area, mainly just beyond the ffridd walls, many of which are traditionally associated with the seasonal exploitation of the upland summer pastures. In similar locations (often re-using earlier sites) there are complex sheepfolds associated with post-medieval use of the upland areas as sheep pasture. Some mining and quarrying trials are dotted around the area.

Key historic landscape characteristics

Relict archaeology (settlements and fields), sheepfolds

An area of relict stone-built remains of prehistoric, medieval and post medieval periods. No, or very few, modern intrusions.





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