Visited Friday 19th October 2012 - first port of call of weekend on the lovely Gower Peninsular. About half a mile up the hill from the Park Mill Heritage Centre, this chambered stone long barrow is hard to miss. This was my first encounter with a 'cairn' type long barrow. Now open to the elements in the same way that Nympsfield in the Cotswolds is - the chambers are impressive.
The Cat Hole cave is a short walk away up into a wooded area.
I visited this site last summer when spending a day 'old stoning' on the Gower. Signposted off the surrounding main roads with a large free parking area in the parkland. The site is visible from the carpark and only requires an easy, flat walk along a path down the valley. This is a lovely place to visit, amongst the trees, particularly on a warm, sunny day. Well worth it.
This is a well tended and large restored Severn-Cotswold type cairn. We got there early and the light was streaming through the frosty trees. The cairn has a central passage with two pairs of transepted chambers. The cairn is now roofless so the internal structures are all exposed. It was fabulous just lying there surrounded by woodland in a bright yellow crisp winter valley. We loved it.
You can park very close by and the approach to it is flat so it'd be great for those using wheelchairs or buggies to visit.
This post appears as part of the weblog entry Gower power
Visited 26th November 2003: This was a fleeting visit, having persuaded a colleague to tag along after a work visit to Swansea. We drove right up the drive and parked in a little car park near the cairn. It was overcast, the light was fading and it soon began spitting with rain. Having only seen photos of the site I was surprised how small it was, not so much in length but in the height of masonry.
Almost as soon as we got to the cairn my camera stopped working. From the few shots I got, only one came out without camera shake. Must go back again under better circumstances.
The path/road leads away from the Watermill/Heritage Centre car park and ford. It says it's Private for access to B&B but some locals said just to say you're going to the camp site at the end which is a Forestry Commission/Scout site. The cairn is in a field to the right of the top car park surrounded by trees. It's kind of a naked Belas Knapp. Took some low level photos but thought better of emulating Julians aerial shot from the tree. Reasonable food and ale from the Gower Inn just up the road on the way back to Swansea
Parc le Breos Cwm Transepted Long Cairn, Gower, West Glamorgan: Date, Contents, and Context
By Alasdair Whittle and Michael Wysocki
First investigated in 1869, the transepted long cairn of Parc le Breos Cwm was re-excavated in 1960–61 but without a report being published. This account presents a number of radiocarbon dates and a detailed re-examination of the human bone assemblages, and attempts to put the monument in local and regional context. Radiocarbon dates place the long cairn in the later part of the earlier Neolithic, and support a fairly long span of time over which its mortuary deposits were accumulated; they also show secondary re-use of the passage, and perhaps also the deliberate incorporation of very old animal bone from nearby caves. The analysis of the human bone assemblages indicates prior exposure of the remains found in the chambers, in contrast to those in the passage. Variation in musculoskeletal stress markers may indicate a mobile lifestyle for at least some of the male mortuary population. Other lifestyle indicators are noted, and isotopic evidence is presented for a terrestrial and mainly meat-oriented diet in the sampled group. The isolated context and hidden setting of the Parc le Breos Cwm long cairn and the apparently low density of south Welsh monuments are stressed.