virtually in the shadow of the current Dolwyddelan castle lies a motte
and bailey structure, long thought to have been the predecssor of the
tower and bailey castle on the rocky crag - described here as
Dolwyddelan II. Dolwyddelan I must predate its successor and
therefore is probably a castle of Robert Rhuddlan (d.1098) which was destroyed
in 1094 when all the 'Norman' castles of North Wales were overwhelmed.
The heart of the fortress is a rocky crag on the summit of which are
traces of a rectangular keep, possibly 30' square. There seems to have
been a bailey along the ridge leading towards the later castle, although
there are few recognisable defensible features other than the
landscape. The dimensions of the keep would make it similar to others under 40'. These exist in Wales at Carndochan
(35' square), Dinas Emrys
(36'x27'), Usk (35' square) and White
castle (35' square): and in England at Bridgnorth
(39'x35'), Clitheroe (35' square), Clun (30' square), Farnham (37'
(29' square), Hyssington (27' square), Moreton Corbet
(38'x33'), Peak (40' square) and Wattlesborough
Why not join me at other Lost Welsh Castles next Spring? Please see the information on tours at Scholarly Sojourns.
Paul Martin Remfry