Cornwall Heritage Trust is proud to have purchased Caer Bran – an important multi-age hillfort site near Sancreed, which contains archaeological remains from both the Bronze Age and Iron Age periods. The purchase allows the Trust to protect the nine-hectare site from possible development and intensive agricultural use, recognising its importance as a site of unique Cornish heritage.
CEO Cathy Woolcock said “We are excited to have been able to add Caer Bran to the collection of sites across Cornwall that we manage and protect and which are all accessible by the public for free. Cornwall Heritage Trust seeks to preserve and strengthen Cornwall’s heritage and educate current and future generations about the heritage significance of the landscapes we live in; Caer Bran will help us to do this.”
Traditionally considered to be an Iron Age enclosure, recent research shows that Caer Bran actually had origins in the Bronze Age, with the construction of three ring cairns set within a hilltop enclosure. These can still be viewed at the site. Re-enclosure of the monument took place in the Iron Age with a more substantial bank and ditch, and this continuity shows the importance of Caer Bran to the people of the local area.
‘Caer is Cornish for fort’ and Bran means ‘raven’ but, Caer Bran could also mean the “fort of Bran,” which is a reference to Bran the Blessed, a mythological Celtic king.
CHT Chairman Lt Col Richard Trant said:
“The Trust has been tracking the Caer Bran property for many years and we were hugely excited when it came back on the market over the Christmas period. It is therefore tremendously pleasing that we have now secured this very special site for the future.
Caer Bran is a property which, as an example of Iron Age presence in Cornwall, has great archaeological importance. Equally, it gives sanctuary to some wonderful flora and fauna, our natural heritage, that the Trust will also protect and nurture.
Caer Bran is a jewel of a site which complements our adjacent sites in West Penwith. Its purchase aligns perfectly with our recently reviewed strategic purpose to protect and preserve Cornish heritage sites for ‘One and All’. I would like to thank the CHT team for their hard work to secure Caer Bran and also a big thank you to Historic England for their potential support of this Cornish gem.”
Cornwall Heritage Trust already own neighbouring Sancreed Beacon, and manage the nearby ancient village of Carn Euny. These sites are freely open to the public and more information about them can be found at www.cornwallheritagetrust.org