Cadbury Castle is Somerset's largest hill fort, from which the Barony of North Cadbury (Cadeberie - Cada's Fort) takes its name.

Cadbury Castle also known as Camelot Castle, is a bronze and iron age hillfort in the civil parish of South Cadbury.

William Stukeley "Prospect of Camalet Castle. 15 Aug 1723." A view of Cadbury Castle, an Iron Age hillfort in Somerset, England.

This ancient site is deeply connected with the legendary King Arthur. The hill is the most probable site of King Arthur's principle court famously called Camelot.    

It is also be said by an ancient writer to have been one of the stations of the Round Table of King Arthur. The following account of this singular fraternity will be interesting to the reader: "This Round Table was kept at several places, especially at Caerleon in Monmouthshire, at Winchester, and at Camalet in Somersetshire."

                                     Excavations at Cadbury Castle    

In June 1913 trial excavations were held on Cadbury Castle. The excavations took place in the south west corner of the hill said by some to be the 'Camelot' of King Arthur. Six men were employed in the excavation work. Many pieces of pottery of the Romano-British era were found as well as evidence of walls and ramparts and a small child's skeleton. The work was carried out on behalf of the Somerset Archaeological and Natural History Society.


The excavations


Cadbury Castle aerial view



                                                     Camelot Finds           

Findings from the excavations at Cadbury Castle 1960-1970 © Camelot Research Committee

                                                   Glas bed, pre-Roman Iron Age
                                                      Silver coin, Roman, 109 BC
                                            Gilt bronze letter from Roman temple
                                             Hinge from Roman soldier's armour
                                                    Bronze brooch, 1st century AD



Findings from the excavations at Cadbury Castle 1960's-1970. © Camelot Research Committee

                                                       Neolithic flint arrowhead
                                                          Late Bronze Age knife
                             Bronze harness fitting and ‘safety-pin’ brooch, Iron Age
                                            Rim of imported dish, 5-6th cent AD
                                                    Gilt-bronze, mid-6th cent AD
                                                                 Late Saxon knife


Archaeological clay fragments from the excavations at Cadbury Castle. Original press photograph c.1960's-1970.

Interesting description on the back.


Skeleton of a young adult male buried in the defences at Cadbury Castle. Probably 1st century BC/A.D. Photo postcard from the excavations 1960's-1970 © Camelot Research Committee

The book 'By South Cadbury is that Camelot...' Excavations at Cadbury Castle 1966-70 is an excellent reference about the excavations at Cadbury Castle in the years 1966-1970. This book of great archaeological and historical importance was published by Thames and Hudson Ltd in 1972 and it is interesting to note that it was also published in Germany by Gustav Lübbe Verlag, Bergisch Gladbach in 1974.

Among the excavations a vast number of unusual findings were found here, especially from the assumed time of King Arthur around the fifth and sixth century. This indicates that then a very rich and powerful personage had his seat at Cadbury Castle.