Cymraeg ardal@ardal-wales.co.uk

Burial Chambers

maen y bardd

Burial Chambers (3000BC – 2000BC)

The Neolithic period starts from 4000BC, around the time when communities started farming and settling in an area, breaking away from the hunter-gatherer way of living. As small tribal communities settled, the population also grew, thus giving more importance to agricultural farming, creating new farmland and transforming the landscape around them.

It is around this time when Megalithic structures were constructed. Chambered tombs such as passage graves were mainly constructed from around 3500BC for the communal burial of the dead. Some would have been multiple burials covered by an earth barrow or stone cairn. Examples of these kinds of burial chambers are to be seen at Bryn Celli Ddu and Barclodiad y Gawres on Anglesey,  probably the most well known of the burial chambers we have in this part of North Wales.

Barclodiad y Gawres - sprial rock art zig-zag stone, inside Barclodiad y Gawres burial chamber

Types of Burial chambers

Passage grave – has narrow passage made of large stones, some have multiple graves (some have corbelled roofs)

Chambered tomb – covered by earth or barrow (mound)

Chambered cairn – a chamber covered by stones (some may be passage graves)

Dolmen (Cromlech) – usually single chambered tomb with flat capstone (portal tomb) – (ancient term for burial chamber)

Barrow (Tumulus) – a rounded earthen mound – bronze age, covering a burial

Long Barrow – a long Neolithic mound covering multiple burial chambers

Cairn – a rounded mound of stones, covering a burial

Cairns are not mentioned in my list, as there are too many scattered around on most hilltops. These usually consist of piles of stones covering a probable later Bronze Age to Iron Age burials. They are not regarded in the same high regard as the larger Neolithic stone built burial chambers.

Below is a list of all the known burial chambers in the area

I have included an O/S number on all historical sites to enable everyone to locate using an O/S map.

Gwynedd

Moel Faban Summit Cairns – Bronze Age burial cairn cemetery – (Extensive ridge-top cemetery of cairns, running for some 300m) – Llanllechid SH634681

Bryn – Neolithic chambered tomb – Felinheli SH515660

Bryn burial chamber

Catellmai – possible collapsed burial chamber – Caeathro (nr Bontnewydd) SH496605

Glyn Arthur / Glascoed Cairn – Bronze Age burial cairn / possible round barrow  – (nr Dinas Dinorwig) Llanddeiniolen SH546653

Glyn Arthur Cairn / Round Barrow

Parc Bach – burial chamber (possible rems)(nr Dolbadarn) Llanberis SH585598

Parc Bach, Dolbadarn

Frondeg / Sling – Neolithic chambered tomb – Llandygai SH605668

 Frondeg / Sling burial chamber

Llety’r Filiast – chambered cairn – Llandudno SH772829

Llety'r Ffiliast

Allor Molloch / Hendre-Waelod – Neolithic chambered tomb – Glan Conwy SH792747

Hendre Waelod, Allor Molloch Hendre Waelod, Allor Molloch

Rhiw (Caerhun Burial Chamber) – Neolithic chambered tomb – (nr Maen-y-Bardd) Tal-y-Fan, Rowen SH741718

Rhiw (Caerhun burial chamber)

Maen-y-Bardd – Neolithic chambered tomb – Tal-y-Fan, Rowen SH740717

Maen y Bardd burial chamber

Waen Bryn-Gwenith – burial chamber (possible dolmen)(nr) Dolgarrog SH744673 (no image)

Capel Garmon – Neolithic chambered tomb (2 inner chambers) – Capel Carmon, Betws-y-Coed SH818543

Capel Garmon burial chamber capel garmon (2nd chamber)

Maen Pebyll – Bronze Age round barrow – Nebo (nr) Capel Garmon  SH843566

Bachwen – Neolithic chambered tomb – Clynnog SH407494

Bachwen burial chamber, Clynnog FawrPennarth – chambered tomb – Clynnog SH430512

Pennarth Burial Chamber

Cromlech Cefnamlwch / Coetan Arthur – Neolithic chambered (dolmen) (nr) Tudweiliog SH229345

Tan-y-Muriau /Rhiw – Neolithic chambered cairn (rems)(nr Rhiw) Aberdaron SH237287

Bronheulog – collapsed chambered long cairn (rems)(nr Rhiw) Aberdaron SH232282

Cilan Uchaf / Lech y Ddol – Neolithic chambered tomb – (nr Llanengan) Abersoch SH300235

Mynydd Tir y Cwmwd – burial chamber – (nr) Lanbedrog SH325311

Cromlech Y Ffor – megalithic round cairn chamber (cromlech) – Four Crosses SH399384

Four Crosses Cromlech

Cefn Isaf – chambered tomb (dolmen) – Rhoslan SH484409

Cefn Isaf Burial Chamber

Ystumcegid – chambered tomb dolmen – (nr) Rhoslan SH498413

ystumcegid

Caer-Dyni – burial chamber – Criccieth – SH511383

Caer Dyni burial chamber

Cist Cerrig – chambered tomb – (nr) Porthmadog SH544384

Gwern Einion – Neolithic chambered tomb (Dolmen) – (nr) Llanfair, Harlech SH587286

Dyffryn Ardudwy – 2 Neolithic double-chambered tomb – Dyffryn Ardudwy SH588228

Dyffryn Ardudwy burial chambers

Cors-y-Gedol – Neolithic chambered tomb – Dyffryn Ardudwy SH603228

Bron y Foel Isaf – chambered tomb – (nr) Coed Ystumgwern, Dyffryn Ardudwy SH607246

Carneddau Hengwm – Neolithic long cairn chambered tomb – (nr) Tal-y-Bont, Dyffryn Ardudwy SH613205

 

Anglesey

Bryn Celli Du Burial Chamber

Bryn Celli Ddu

Bryn Celli Ddu – Neolithic passage grave & henge (c 2000BC late Neolithic) – Llanddaniel Fab SH507701

Bryn yr Hen Bobl – Neolithic chambered tomb (dolmen) – Llanddaniel Fab SH519690

Plas Newydd – (2) Neolithic chambered tombs (dolmen) – Llanddaniel Fab SH519697

Plas Newydd burial chambers

Ty Mawr – Neolithic chambered tomb / passage grave – Llanfairpwllgwyngyll SH538721

Ty Mawr

Perthiduon – possible capstone boulder of a megalithic tomb, fallen on its supporters (dolmen) – Brynsiencyn SH480668

Carn – Neolithic round barrow, burial mound – Brynsiencyn SH488669

Carn – capstone of a megalithic tomb, fallen on its supporters (dolmen) -Brynsiencyn SH484666

Bodowyr – Neolithic passage grave – (nr) Llangaffo SH462681

Bodowyr Burial chamber

Graiglas – Bronze Age round barrow – Llangristiolus – SH415748 (no image)

Henblas Cromlech – large natural eratics (possibly adapted for Bronze Age burials) – Llangristiolus SH425719

Din Dryfol – Neolithic chambered cairn – Aberffraw SH395724

Barclodiad y Gawres – Neolithic passage grave (c 3000-2500BC) Llangwyfan SH329707

Barclodiad y Gawres

Ty Newydd – Neolithic Burial Chamber (dolmen) – Llanfaelog SH344738

Ty Newydd

Craig-yr-Allor – site of possible burial chambered tomb – Bryngwran SH370773 (no image)

Trefignath – (3) Neolithic chambered long cairn (3000-2000BC) – Trearddur SH258805

Trefignath burial chamber

Trearddur Burial Chamber – Prehistoric chambered tomb (impossible to be certain of original state) Trearddur SH259800

Borthwen Beach – a folly cromlech (dolmen) – Rhoscolyn SH271751

Presaddfed – (2) Neolithic chambered tombs(dolmen) – Bodedern SH347808

Presaddfed burial chambers

Treiorwerth – Bronze Age round barrow – Bodedern SH354805 (no image)

Bedd Branwen – Bronze Age round barrow cairn – Llanddeusant – SH361850

Bedd Branwen

Foel Fawr – possible collapsed chambered tomb – Llanfechell SH361920 (no image)

Pen-y-Morwyd – Bronze Age round barrow – Llanfechell SH384912 (no image)

Pen-y-Fynwent – Bronze Age round barrow – Rhosybol SH434889 (no image)

Maen Chwyf – possible collapsed chambered tomb / natural feature – (nr) Llannerchymedd SH432857

Lligwy -Neolithic chambered tomb (c 2500-2000BC late Neolithic)(nr) Moelfre SH501860

Lligwy burial chamberDin Lligwy burial chamber

Pant-y-Saer – Neolithic chambered tomb (Cromlech) – Benllech SH509824

Coed-y-Glyn – Neolithic chambered tomb – Benllech SH514817

Llanddyfnan – mutilated Bronze Age round barrow (tumulus)(nr) Pentraeth SH508784 (no image)

Hendrefor / Ucheldref – (2) Neolithic chambered tombs – Llansadwrn SH551773

 
Some areas may be on private land and permission to roam may be required.
 There are public footpaths leading to most places.
Safety and care must be taken at all times, as some areas are difficult to get to due to hills and slopes that may lead away from paths.