Excellent little promontory fort, this, set upon a promontory (funnily enough) overlooking, but shielded by woodland from the Afon Ogwr as it reaches the Bristol Channel below to the approx west. A fine, substantial bank, preceded by ditch, provides a defensive screen to the east, steeply sloping ground doing 'the business' at the other points of the compass very nicely indeed, thank you very much. Economy of effort was clearly the name of the game back then. Intelligent people, those that designed, erected and called Fleming's Down 'home'.
Unfortunately the same adjective can not, by any stretch of the imagination, be applied to the moron who decided to have a nice, big bonfire within the aforementioned ditch, so leaving a truly unrighteous mess as grim testament to his (or her) terminal lack of mental capability. Honestly, sometimes I really can't begin to comprehend what planet some people are on. Draw your own conclusions as to the culprit, bearing in mind the site must be approached on foot....
However I guess the scars will fade... eventually... and Fleming's Down nevertheless provided a great perch for the Mam C and I for a couple of hours. We approached via the footpath to the east of the water works on the B4524, parking in a layby near the Pelican public house (incidentally very good - the pub, not the layby, unless you happen to be into such things, that is). The footpath provides a good idea of the excellent defensive nature of the western flank of Fleming's Down - yeah, just try storming that.
Sadly, though, it seems that prehistoric earthworks have no defence against South Walian pyromaniacs.
Whilst spending a sunny bank holiday with the family at Ogmore Castle (CADW) I took the opportunity (as you do) to take a look at the remains of this promontory fort.
I walked up the road from the castle car park and as you come to Ivy Cottage on your right, there is a track leading uphill. (There is also room to park a couple of cars in a lay-by - saving you the car park fee!)
Follow the track up the hill and as you reach the top (the track changes from tarmac to gravel) you come to a fork. Take the track to the left and you will see the remains of the ditch/rampart in the field across the gorge. Over the metal field gate and you are soon in the afore mentioned field.
The defences are pretty well preserved and range in height from between 2 to 3 metres – when standing at the bottom of the ditch. This was a lovely spot to visit in the warm weather and there were coastal views to be had to the south west.
It only took me 15 minutes to walk from Ogmore castle to the promontory fort – well worth the effort when in the area.
Coflein describes the site:
'A promontory defended by a substantial bank and ditch c 90m long built across its East side'.