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Cadbury Hill (Congresbury)

Hillfort

<b>Cadbury Hill (Congresbury)</b>Posted by vulcanImage © vulcan
Also known as:
  • Camelot

Nearest Town:Clevedon (7km NW)
OS Ref (GB):   ST437649 / Sheets: 172, 182
Latitude:51° 22' 47.32" N
Longitude:   2° 48' 32.57" W

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<b>Cadbury Hill (Congresbury)</b>Posted by vulcan <b>Cadbury Hill (Congresbury)</b>Posted by vulcan <b>Cadbury Hill (Congresbury)</b>Posted by vulcan

Fieldnotes

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Visited 8.1.11
Travelling south from Yatton to Congresbury along to B3133 you will see a brown tourist sign to the left stating 'Cadbury'. Follow the sign and you will come to a fairly large free car park on your right. Park here and take the mud 'path' across the grass and up towards the trees. (There is an information board in the car park telling you all about Cadbury wildlife reserve – although the only wildlife I saw was several dogs being walked!) As the 'path' climbs you go through a wood kissing gate which has a small information board giving brief details of the Hillfort. Then up a short but steep section and you arrive in the centre of the Hillfort.
I walked the perimeter of the entire Hillfort which only took 15 minutes. There are decent views to be had when peering through the trees – especially to the north. It makes you realise that you don't need to that high to see for miles in this largely flat countryside. There wasn't a great deal to be seen of the ramparts/ditches – much eroded. There was however a lot of stonework sticking out of the ground so perhaps these were part of the original defences?
In the centre of the site was a large raised 'platform' of stones which must have belonged to some building or other in the past? (The site was also used during the 'Dark Ages') Also in the centre of the Hillfort was an unofficial 'BBQ type' area with a fair bit of rubbish left around – bottles / cans etc. I now carry a bag with me for such occasions so I spent a few minutes bagging up the rubbish to take back down with me to deposit in the bins in the car park.
It takes about 10 minutes to walk from the car park to the Hillfort.
Not a lot to see really but a fairly easy site to access when in the area.
Posted by CARL
11th January 2011ce

Miscellaneous

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Cadbury Hill fort - AKA CadCong
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The fort on Cadbury Hill was built about two and a half thousand years ago. It went out of use during the Roman occupation of Britain, but was subsequently resettled during the Dark Ages.

Cadbury Hill was probably occupied by members of the Dobunni tribe. Gradually they developed their hill settlement into a fortified camp by constructing a multiple ditch and rampart system of earthwork defences topped by a stone wall rampart.

Cadbury Congressbury is one of five like-named Iron Age forts in the Southwest area. The name is Anglo Saxon and means 'Cadda's Camp'


Recent excavations not only uncovered its Iron Age beginnings but also important facts about its subsequent history. Despite the Celts fierce will to resist, their hillforts were a poor defence against the highly trained Roman legions. Thus, Cadbury Hill, like most others was abandoned during the Roman occupation (AD 43-410). Nevertheless, under a stable Roman administration the Congressbury region experienced a flourishing growth in population, settlements and land use. Recent fieldwork in Congressbury parish uncovered evidence of a large number of lowland settlements dating from this period, including a group of kilns which manufacture large amounts of a distinctive grey pottery. Their products can be found widely distributed in the region.

To the North of the hill in Henly woods a pagan Roman temple was built. After it fell into ruin in the fifth century, local people who had presumably been converted to Christianity, were buried at the site over earlier pagan graves

Unlike most other hillforts, Cadbury Congresbury, also referred to as CadCong, gained a new lease of life in the Dark Age with large scale reoccupation between AD 410-700. Evidence of several rectangular as well as circular buildings has been found. judging by the number of people that nay have been living here, cadbury was a Dark Age settlement of some importance.

An intriging find from this period was the foundations of a very large circular hut. It seems to have had a ritual purpose of some kind, but it is now known if this was Christian or pagan.

Dark Age settlement of the site was confirmed by the discovery of amphorae (large ceramic wine jars) still being imported from the Mediterranean lands despite the breakdown of the Roman empire.

The nearby settlement of Congressbury was founded in the Saxon era by St Congar, a Celtic holy man from Cornwall.

According to legend St Congar plunged his staff into the ground where upon it took root. To this day there is an ancient yew tree in the churchyard known as 'St Congar's walking stick'. Such a miracle persuaded Ine, the Saxon king of wessex to grant land used for a monastery.

Cadbury Hill is a Scheduled Ancient Monument.
Posted by vulcan
4th May 2003ce
Edited 5th May 2003ce