Human existence on the stage of mankind has depended upon many factors. On our little part of the world, a major factor was an "ice curtain" that rose and fell over time. Ice Ages they are called, but they could be viewed as the ice curtain that rose and fell upon the stage of mankind's existence.
At least eight major warm-cold cycles are felt to have occurred. (1) The most severe curtain fall was felt to extend all the way down to the Alps. Moving up and down the continent of Europe leaving its geological trail, it appears to have risen to the shores of Wales at least by 25,000 BC. The drawing to the right is my attempt to shown the human evidence which has been discovered.
Goat's Cave (Paviland) appears to be the remains of the earliest human occupation of the coastline of Wales. Buried some 16,000 years ago are the bones of a young man covered in red. (2) Animal bones have been dated to around 25,000 BC, documenting the fact that life came to occupy this cave at a very early period. (3) By 15,000 BC the ice curtain had lifted to above the river Clwyd since human remains have been found in caves noted on the drawing. [Cefn-Yr-Ogof, Ffynnen Beuno, and Bonthewydd ] (3) The curtain must have fallen again to the coast line of Europe since the land bridge that connected the island is felt to have disappeared around 6,000 BC. By 5,700 BC folks seem to have lived again on the stage of north Wales in the area around Brenic (3). Dinas Bran in the valley of the Dee shows occupation during the Bronze Age [ 2,500 - 2,000 BC] (3). All these acts occurred before Old Oswestry which waited until the need for fortified hill forts of the iron age starting around 800 BC. Certainly, the Ice Capades have been preforming for years!
These actors provided outstanding performances. Shakespeare would have been proud.
(1) Hadingham, E., Secrets of The Ice Age, A Reappraisal of Prehistoric Man, John Wiley & Sons, Ontario, Canada, 1979. pp. 17-23.
(2) Mackenzie, D.A., Ancient Man In Britain, Blackie & Son, London, 1922. pp. 19-22.
(3) Dyer, J., Prehistoric England and Wales, Penguin Books, New York, 1982. pp.321-328.