Redley Cliff, Caswell Bay, Gower, Swansea

Description: Coastal limestone headland, with secondary broadleaved woodland, scrub, and grassland. Redley Cliff lies on the limestone headland at the western end of Caswell Bay. The northern and eastern parts occupy a steep north-facing slope supporting wind-trimmed scrub woodland of Ash, Hazel, Hawthorn, and Blackthorn, with a low dense canopy and strongly calcicole field layer.

Redley CliffThe remainder of the reserve occupies the steep south-facing slope of the headland, stretching down to and including the sea cliffs. The summit bears limestone grassland and the slope carries a mosaic of Bracken, Gorse, heath, and scree. In the more sheltered eastern parts, natural succession has given way to naturalised Holm Oak and Sycamore, and Cotoneaster is well-established on the scree. Fox and Rabbit are present. Stonechat and Yellowhammer are among the commoner birds.

The remains of Caswell Cliff Fort, a legally protected Scheduled Ancient Monument of national importance, are visible at the summit. This is one of a series of cliff top defended enclosures sited along the coast of south west Wales. Although much of Caswell Cliff Fort is hidden by vegetation, it comprises outer and inner sections of banks and ditches.

Grid References O.S. Explorer map 164 Gower. Main entrance: SS586875, Site centre: SS589875

Status The site is part of the Caswell Bay SSSI, a Scheduled Ancient Monument, and covered by a Tree Preservation Order.

Tenure The reserve was purchased by the Trust in September 1970.

Size 3.6 ha (9 acres).

Location and Access Notes

2.5 km west of Mumbles. Can be accessed from steps from Caswell beach, or the coastal footpath from Brandy Cove. Not accessible to wheelchairs. Coastal path can suffer from erosion in places.

Public transport

Bus numbers 14, 14a, 14b, 14c, 113, 114 from Swansea Quadrant Bus Station to Bishopston.

Redley Cliff