A small multivallate hillfort known as 'Castle-an-Dinas' which contains an 18th century folly called 'Roger's Tower'


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Location Description:
Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.


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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

Location Description:
Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.
Cornwall (Unitary Authority)
National Grid Reference:

Reasons for Designation

Small multivallate hillforts are defined as fortified enclosures of varying shape, generally between 1 and 5ha in size and located on hilltops. They are defined by boundaries consisting of two or more lines of closely set earthworks spaced at intervals of up to 15m. These entirely surround the interior except on sites located on promontories, where cliffs may form one or more sides of the monument. They date to the Iron Age period, most having been constructed and occupied between the sixth century BC and the mid-first century AD. Small multivallate hillforts are generally regarded as settlements of high status, occupied on a permanent basis. Recent interpretations suggest that the construction of multiple earthworks may have had as much to do with display as with defence. Earthworks may consist of a rampart alone or of a rampart and ditch which, on many sites, are associated with counterscarp banks and internal quarry scoops. Access to the interior is generally provided by one or two entrances. The interior generally consists of settlement evidence including round houses, four and six post structures interpreted as raised granaries, roads, pits, gullies, hearths and a variety of scattered post and stake holes. Evidence from outside numerous examples of small multivallate hillforts suggests that extra-mural settlement was of a similar nature. Small multivallate hillforts are rare with around 100 examples recorded nationally. Most are located in the Welsh Marches and the south-west with a concentration of small monuments in the north-east. These hillforts are rare and they are important for understanding the nature of settlement and social organisation within the Iron Age period. Despite some stone quarrying and later re-use, the small multivallate hillfort known as Castle-an-Dinas which contains an 18th century folly called Roger's Tower survives well and will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to its construction, development, function, territorial, social and economic significance, agricultural practices and domestic arrangements as well as its overall landscape context.


The monument includes a small multivallate hillfort and 18th century folly, situated at the summit of a broad hill on Tonkins Downs. The hillfort survives as an almost circular enclosed area covering a total of approximately 1.17 hectares. It is defined by four concentric widely-spaced ramparts and a partially-buried outer ditch. The innermost rampart survives as a low bank, mainly confined to the south and east. The second is a thick stony bank with some outer retaining walls; its circuit is largely complete and it measures up to 1.8m high. It is cut on the south east side by an 18th century folly known as 'Roger's Tower' which was built from stone derived from the rampart. The third rampart is a strong stone and earth bank which is almost a complete circuit. The outermost rampart is of similar construction and stands up to 2.3m high, but is restricted to the northern and western sides of the hillfort. Beyond this rampart is a largely buried outer ditch. 'Roger's Tower' is square in plan with four corner turrets. It has a pointed arched doorway to the east and several windows. The interior has a domed granite ceiling and gives access to all the turrets. Roger's Tower is associated with John Rogers of Treassowe 1750 - 1832 and is a listed building Grade II (70370).

The hillfort was first recorded by Borlase in the 18th century who noted the interior contained many circular 7m diameter features enclosed by rubble walls. Clear traces of these features are no longer visible, but are likely to survive as buried features. The number of ramparts reflects the poor natural defences provided by the location.

Sources: HER:- PastScape Monument No:-423254 and 918277


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number:
CO 36
Legacy System:


This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

End of official listing

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