Castles and Town Walls of King Edward in Gwynedd

Caernarfon Castle

Caernarfon Castle

Beaumaris, Caernarfon, Conwy and Harlech were the finest castles built by King Edward I in Wales. At Caernarfon and Conwy, new towns were built within massive walls at the same time as the castles. All were begun and substantially completed between 1283 and 1330. The result, both individually and collectively, is the finest surviving example of late thirteenth-century military architecture in Europe. Together, these four great castles and two sets of town walls were inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1986 as the Castles and Town Walls of King Edward in Gwynedd World Heritage Site.

In 2004, Cadw published its first comprehensive management plan for the World Heritage Site to help look after the site for the benefit of future generations. Since then, many of the objectives and actions have been achieved, including significant conservation work, installation of new visitor facilities, and new interpretation. Also during this period there have been several wider strategic developments such as updated local and unitary development plans, and new primary legislation in respect of the historic environment and the well-being of future generations in Wales.

A new management plan has therefore been prepared to provide a clear strategy and vision for the World Heritage Site, and guide its management for the next ten years.  This has been prepared following extensive stakeholder consultation.

There is more information about the Castles and Town Walls of King Edward in Gwynedd on the UNESCO website, including the statement of Outstanding Universal Value, and in the new management plan below.