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Annual Reports

CPAT Trustees' Annual Report 1998/99


The Clwyd-Powys Archaeological Trust is a company limited by guarantee and not having a share capital (Registered No 1212455) and Registered Charity (Registered No 508301). The governing document is the Memorandum and Articles of Association as incorporated on 14 May 1975.

Principal Activity
The principal activity of the Trust is the education of the public in archaeology and the provision of archaeological services to the community.


The Trust is one of the four Archaeological Trusts established in Wales in the 1970s. It is both a limited company and a registered charity.

The Trust works closely with other national, regional and local bodies, to help record, interpret and protect all aspects of the historic environment. Its main field of operations is in the Clwyd-Powys area, namely the county of Powys and the local authority areas formerly in Clwyd - Denbighshire, Flintshire, Wrexham County Borough Council and the eastern part of Conwy County Borough Council.


Archaeological Research and Investigation
The Trust continued to undertake a wide variety of projects in the field, usually in response to proposed developments or to enhance the archaeological record. As in previous years these included rescue excavations, building recording, desktop assessments, field evaluations, field surveys and watching briefs. Examples of the types of project which were undertaken during the course of the year are given below. The names of the former counties of Brecknock, Radnor and Montgomery are used for convenience in the following text.

Projects funded by Cadw: Welsh Historic Monuments included the following, a number of which have continued from previous financial years:
Coastal Project - Help was given in the production of a popular publication on coastal heritage, to be published by Cadw and the four Welsh Archaeological Trusts.
Churches Project - Three different elements of work were undertaken as part of this project, a pan-Wales initiative for purposes of record enhancement and conservation. Firstly, work was undertaken on the completion of individual reports and regional overviews of the archaeology of about 260 pre-Victorian churches in the Clwyd-Powys area. Secondly, assistance was given in the production of a summary report of the churches project to be published in due course. Thirdly, a draft was prepared of a more popular booklet on the archaeology of churches in Wales to be published by Cadw and the Archaeological Trusts.
Deserted Rural Settlements - This was the third year of rapid survey of deserted medieval and later rural settlements for purposes of record enhancement and conservation, funded as part of a pan-Wales initiative, focusing on sites in southern Radnorshire and northern Brecknock.
Cwmhir Abbey - The Trust again returned to carry out further work at the remains of the Cistercian abbey at Abbeycwmhir, Radnorshire. In this instance, the Trust was commissioned to produce a geophysical survey of part of the site, which was undertaken by GeoQuest on behalf of the Trust. Geophysical survey produced some evidence of the layout of the cloisters which are no longer visible above ground level, and also provided some possible evidence of the layout of the eastern end of the abbey church, which may never have been fully completed.
Prehistoric Funerary and Ritual Sites in Denbighshire and eastern Conwy - Rapid survey of about 360 sites, including round barrows, ring-cairns, standing stones, stone circles and stone rows, for the purpose of Scheduled Ancient Monument enhancement. This continued the work undertaken in the upper Severn Valley in 1997/98, and which it is anticipated will extend to the whole of Wales in due course.
Historic Landscape Characterization - As part of a new pan-Wales initiative, work was undertaken on the Tanat Valley and the Vale of Clwyd - two of areas defined in the Historic Landscapes Register produced by Cadw in conjunction with the Countryside Council for Wales (CCW) and ICOMOS UK - with the aim of identifying significant historic elements within the landscape which may be worthy of preservation or management. A number of historic landscape character areas were defined in both of the historic landscape areas on the basis of a number of historic landscape themes, including settlement, agriculture, transport and communications, industry, defence, funerary, ecclesiastical and legendary associations, and finally, ornamental and picturesque landscapes and cultural associations. The project is being carried out in parallel with CCW's LANDMAP programme being undertaken by local authorities in Wales, and it is anticipated that the studies will provide information about the historic environment that will feed into Tir Gofal, the new all-Wales agri-environment scheme to be launched by the Welsh Office in 1999.
Roundhuts - A further new project undertaken during the year was a preliminary assessment of roundhuts in the Clwyd-Powys area. These sites, representing prehistoric and later buildings, are fewer in number compared with some other areas of Wales, but provide valuable evidence of early undefended settlement which has been little studied in the past. As in the case of other field assessment projects of this kind, one of the primary objectives of the project has been for the purpose of Scheduled Ancient Monument enhancement.
Llanelidan Church - Recording work on part of the foundations of the church was undertaken during the course of maintenance work being carried out on the church.
Walton Neolithic Enclosures - Cadw generously made a financial contribution towards the work on these important prehistoric monuments in Radnorshire, undertaken as part of the SEPAH project carried out with funding from the European Commission as part of the Raphael Programme (see below).

Projects funded by the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales included the following:
Radnorshire Commons - Rapid identification survey of the archaeological resource of upland areas of parts of the Radnorshire Commons, as part of the pan-Wales uplands initiative, for record enhancement and historic landscape management purposes.
Uplands Survey Synthesis - A synthesis was researched on the upland survey work by the Trust over the last 10 years carried out with funding from a variety of sources in the public and private sectors.
Aerial Photography Mapping Programme - As in previous years, important work continued on the rectification and plotting of sites of archaeological interest in Montgomeryshire recorded on oblique and vertical aerial photographs for record enhancement and conservation purposes, funded by the Royal Commission as part of a pan-Wales initiative. A high proportion of the photographs which were studied belong to the Trust's extensive archive of oblique aerial photographs which are a mine of historic landscape information that has yet to be fully studied.

Projects funded by other bodies included the following:
Mynydd y Ffynnon Survey - Continued rapid survey for record enhancement and conservation purposes western Montgomeryshire, with funding from ADAS via the European Commission, in conjunction with the Dyfed Archaeological Trust.
Welsh Heritage Assets Project - Audit of archaeological sites in Forest Enterprise holdings in Clwyd and Powys, for purposes of record enhancement and conservation, funded by Forest Enterprise, including surveys in the Hafren Forest, South Tywi, Crynant, Gwydyr, and Coed-y-Brenin areas.
Vyrnwy Survey - Continued rapid identification survey of archaeological sites in vicinity of Lake Vyrnwy, Montgomeryshire, for record enhancement and conservation purposes, with funding from Severn-Trent Water.
Trannon Moor - Continued survey work on archaeological sites in area of existing windfarm in Montgomeryshire, funded by developer via Powys County Council.
Erddig - Detailed recording work on the cobbled courtyard at Erddig, on behalf of the National Trust.
Caersws-Machynlleth Gas Pipeline - Desktop study and excavation and recording in advance of the pipeline crossing the line of the Roman road east of the Roman fort at Caersws, Montgomeryshire. The road was found to overlie valley bottom peat deposits which were sampled for subsequent palaeoenvironmental study by staff of the University of Wales, Lampeter.
Woodland Trust Archaeological Surveys - Audit of archaeological sites in forestry, for record enhancement and conservation purposes, funded by the Woodland Trust, at Plas Power, Coed Ystrad, and Coed-y-Foel.
SEPAH - As noted above, this project (Survey, Exploration and Preservation of the Archaeological Heritage) was carried out with funding from the European Commission as part of the Raphael Programme with additional funding from Cadw: Welsh Historic Monuments. The focus of the project were the two large and enigmatic Neolithic timber circles underlying Roman forts near Hindwell and Walton in the Walton Basin, Radnorshire. The perimeters of these two nationally important sites are partly known from aerial photography and partly by excavation. The main objectives of the project was to undertake further geophysical and ground survey which it was hoped might help to define the extent of the Hindwell enclosure and provide dating evidence for the Walton enclosure. The project was undertaken with the help of colleagues with particular expertise in ground survey and geophysical survey from Holland, Germany and the Republic of Ireland.

Education and publication
Every opportunity is taken to carry out educational work, even though only a relatively small proportion of the grant aid which the Trust currently receives is given specifically for this purpose. All the Trust's activities, however, contribute directly or indirectly towards a greater understanding of the historic environment of the Clwyd-Powys area. A major initiative during the latter part of the year was development work on the Trust's Website which can now be reached on the Internet at It includes information about the Trust and what it does. The website is already proving to be helpful in publicising the Trust's activities and the services it provides to the community. About 40 project and topic reports were produced during the course of the year for limited circulation. Short reports on individual projects undertaken by the Trust are generally summarised in Archaeology in Wales, published annually by the Council for British Archaeology: Wales, as well as in a number of national period journals including Britannia and Medieval Archaeology. Other publications by Trust staff during the course of the year included reports on excavation and survey work in the Walton Basin (published in the journal Transactions of the Radnorshire Society and as a monograph in the CBA Research Report series), and the final report on the excavations on Montgomery town wall (published in Montgomeryshire Collections, the journal of the Powysland Club). Other publications by Trust staff appeared in the journal Church Archaeology and in a booklet entitled Archaeology and Landuse, three case studies: prehistoric links in modern Europe.

Archaeological service provision
With the help of funding from the Royal Commission the Trust maintains an archive and computerized record of sites, finds, historic buildings and areas of archaeological importance known as the Regional Sites and Monuments Record (SMR), covering Powys, part of Conwy, Denbighshire, Flintshire, and Wrexham. The main purposes of the record are to provide advice about the archaeological implications of planning policies and developments, advice about the management of archaeological sites and landscapes, and to serve as a resource for initiatives concerning the preservation, interpretation and presentation of the archaeology and historic landscapes of Wales. The total number of entries in the main computerised SMR record now stands at 35,058 of which about 1,167 new records were added and 2,116 existing records were edited during the course of the year, new information being gathered from recent fieldwork and from published sources. The record has now been formally adopted for planning purposes by all the planning authorities in the Clwyd-Powys area - Conwy County Borough Council, Denbighshire County Council, Flintshire County Council, Powys County Council, and Wrexham County Borough Council.

With the help of funding from Cadw: Welsh Historic Monuments the Trust continued to provide management, development control and strategic planning advice about all aspects of the historic environment throughout the Clwyd-Powys area to national and local planning authorities, public and private sector developers, and other local and national organisations. The Trust received notification of 6,628 planning applications, highway scheme proposals and minerals applications from local authorities during the course of the year, all of which were checked to see whether they had significant archaeological implications. The Trust was also consulted on about 330 other development proposals outside the planning system including the following: Scheduled Ancient Monument Consent applications; Environmentally Sensitive Area management schemes; Woodland Grant Scheme applications; Forest Design Plans; Environment Agency capital and management schemes; schemes proposed by various utility companies including Welsh Water, Severn Trent Water and the Wrexham Water Company, MANWEB, SWALEC, MEB, British Gas/Transco. Regular liaison meetings were also held with staff of the Forestry Authority, the Environment Agency and the Countryside Council for Wales.

The Trust also continued to be consulted by local authorities on a number of strategic planning documents, submissions having been prepared during the course of the year on Denbighshire's Strategic Planning Guidance document, the Brecon Beacons National Park Plan, the North Flintshire Local Plan, and on Interim Planning Guidance for the Communities of Llangedwyn, Llanrhaeadr-ym-Mochnant & Llansilin following their incorporation into the Powys Structure Plan and Montgomery Local Plan. Significant staff time was also devoted to consultations on Forest Design Plans, particularly for private woodland, and on Local Environment Agency Design Plans (LEAP) prepared by the Environment Agency, including plans for the Dee, Merionydd, Conwy, Usk, Wye and Severn Uplands. A major innovation during the course of the year was the appointment of a Heritage Management Officer. This new post, created with financial support from Cadw: Welsh Historic Monuments, will have a major input into the historic landscape management aspects of the Tir Gofal scheme - the new all-Wales agri-environment scheme - which is due to begin in the 1999/00 financial year.


The Trust is managed by a board of Trustees elected from the Trust Members at the Annual General Meeting. The Trustees met on four occasions during the course of the financial year, in April, June, September 1998 and January 1999. The Trust Committee, comprising the Trustees, other Members co-opted by the Trustees, and an observer nominated by Cadw: Welsh Historic Monuments. The Committee met on two occasions during the year, in April and September 1998. Nominations for membership is by invitation from local authorities, museums, local historical and archaeological societies, and other bodies with interests in the historic environment of Wales. Members normally meet once a year at the Annual General Meeting. A list of the Trustees, Committee Members, Members, Staff and Advisors during all or part of 1998/99 is given below. It is sad to record the death of two Committee Members during the course of the year, Mr James Barfoot of Machynlleth and Ms Diana Morgan of Flintshire.


The Trust is grateful for the financial support it continues to receive from Cadw: Welsh Historic Monuments, an Executive Agency of the Welsh Office, and the Royal Commission on Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales. Cadw provides a contribution to the Trust's administrative costs, within the terms of the Welsh Office's support for Voluntary Sector Organisations. Most of the remainder of the Trust's income came in the form of grant aid and contract awards from the public and private sectors, and is almost exclusively designated for the provision of archaeological services and for specific field or office-based projects within the Trust's annual programme of work.


Trustees/Company Directors
Mrs F M Lynch Llewellyn, Chairman, University of Wales, Bangor
Dr J L Davies, Vice Chairman, University of Wales, Aberystwyth
Dr C J Arnold, University of Wales, Aberystwyth
Mr D F Petch, University of Liverpool
Mr D W L Rowlands, Llanerfyl

Advisory Committee
Dr S H R Aldhouse-Green, University of Wales College, Newport
Mr J Barfoot, Machynlleth
Mr K S Brassil, National Museums and Galleries of Wales
Mr P Dorling, Brecon Beacons National Park
Mr D M Evans, Society of Antiquaries of London
Mrs F Gale, Denbighshire County Council
Mr S Grenter, Wrexham County Borough Council
Mr D F Keast, Powys County Council
Ms D Morgan, Flintshire County Council
Dr S Rees, observer for Cadw: Welsh Historic Monuments
Mr C J Spurgeon, Aberystwyth

Miss J Ashton, Radnorshire Society
Councillor G R Banks, Powys County Council
Miss E Bredsdorff, Powysland Museum
Mr R Brewer, National Museum of Wales
Councillor Mrs S D Francis, Powys County Council
Councillor Mrs B Greenaway, Wrexham County Borough Council
Ms J Henderson, Council for Museums in Wales
Councillor Mr J H Hughes, Powys County Council
Mr C R Musson, former Director, CPAT
Mrs N P Parker, Flintshire Historical Society
Mrs M T Read, Denbighshire Historical Society
Councillor Mrs L Thorpe, Conwy County Borough Council

Administration Team
Mr W J Britnell, Director/Company Secretary
Mrs J E Britnell, Administrative Officer
Mrs M Godsell, Finance Assistant

Curatorial Team
Mr C H R Martin, Principal Curatorial Officer
Ms J L Mitcham, Sites and Monuments Records Officer
Mr M Walters, Development Control Officer
Mr P Copleston, Heritage Management Officer
Ms W J Owen, Senior Project Assistant/DC Assistant

Project Team
Mr R J Silvester, Deputy Director
Dr A M Gibson, Projects Manager
Mr N W Jones, Projects Officer
Mr D Thomas, Project Officer
Mr W G Owen, Senior Project Assistant
Ms P Frost, Project Assistant
Mr R Hankinson, Project Assistant

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