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Bronylls Castle

Bronllys Castle is one of a dozen or so castles in the southern March, distinguished by its 13th century round keep. First established as a motte and bailey castle by Richard fitz Pons at the end of the 11th century, the great tower was added by Walter de Clifford III. Such towers were a simple and effective way of bringing a timber castle up to date at this time.

History of Bronylls Castle

1086 - Richard fitz Pons of the barony of Clifford, at the western extremity of the county of Hereford, builds himself a timber motte and bailey castle at Bronllys.

1093 - The Normans, including Richard fitz Pons, under Bernard of Newmarch capture and kill Rhys ap Tewdwr, king of the Welsh kingdom of Deheubarth. During the following years other Norman lords participated with Bernard in the campaign by which Brycheiniog is conquered and the lordship of Brecon established.

1116 - Richard fitz Pons establishes himself of lord of Cantref Selyf, a vast tract of mountainous territory extending north-westward from the castle. Soon the adjoining lordship of Cantref Bychan is annexed by Richard (more in the History section)

The castle stands on an elevated site near the point where the Llynfi is joined by the Dulais as it flows north to the Wye at Glasbury four miles away. It is placed at a commanding position upon what was probably the main route by which the Normans penetrated the Welsh Kingdom of Brycheiniog in the last years of the eleventh century.

The castle can be found quite close to the road, where there is a lay-by for limited parking. A short walk through the castle and the castle quickly comes into view. Since my first visit to the castle, an impressive wooden staircase is now in place since the rapairs made to the inside of the castle to enable the visitor to not only explore the inside, but also climb to the upper levels, previously not possible.

Text by Fred Vincent http://castle-finders.co.uk