The coracle, a one-person boat native to these parts, has a history dating back thousands of years. Cilgerran Castle, which overlooks the Teifi, a river favoured by the peculiar vessel, isn’t doing too badly either. Almost 800 years young and counting.
Take the wall-walk to truly appreciate why it was built here. Stunning location. Perfect for stunning attackers. The Normans first saw the potential and established an early ‘ringwork’ castle here, but the imposing masonry castle we see today was probably the work of William Marshal, earl of Pembroke.
Cilgerran is first mentioned by name in 1165, when the Lord Rhys captured the castle. It was retaken by William Marshal in 1204, only to be taken again by the Welsh during Llywelyn the Great’s campaigns in 1215. However, eight years later, William’s son, another William, regained control.
Traditionally, medieval castles were designed with a keep or strong tower at the centre but Cilgerran Castle is unusual because two massive round towers were erected instead. These, despite Owain Glyn Dŵr’s best efforts, still stand to a good height today.
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