Community (Military) Archaeology at Cwm Gwdi

For the past few weeks I have been planning my very own community project. I had picked my site (Cwm Gwdi military training camp), gathered information, collected the maps, wrote the project design, conducted the risk assessments, set up the teams and planned the tasks for each day.

 Finally last week everything fell into place and I went off into the field with my teams to begin surveying the site.

 Our task was simple…. Record the 20th century military earthworks and come to some conclusions on what they may have been used for, all whilst having a good time.

 Military archaeology is one of my favourite aspects of archaeology so Cwm Gwdi was of particular interest to me. The site contains a range of dug-outs and earthworks associated to military training activities.

 The site has been in use since the late Victorian era and allegedly used to prepare soldiers for the Boer War. Military activity continued on the site up until the 1980’s.

 The teams quickly set about identifying remnants of the military occupation of the site, locating key features such as dug-outs, slit trenches and ballistic banks. We came up with some interesting theories as to how the features might have been used.

 Once we were ready out came the measuring tapes so that we could make some plan drawing of the features, which I will be including in my report for the surveys.   

 The weather held off and we had a very successful week of surveying, with everybody (including myself) learning a new skill.

 The military camp covers a huge area and includes more archaeological features than we had time to record. There will hopefully be a return to Cwm Gwdi at some point in the not to distant future to carry on with the fantastic work already done by my volunteers.

 If you are interested in hearing me or would like to register interest for any future events then get in contact:


Here are some photos of the volunteers surveying at Cwm Gwdi last week……


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