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Cadw is the Welsh Government’s historic environment service working for an accessible and well-protected historic environment for Wales.

We want to make the historic environment accessible to all. Cadw does this by:

  • Conserving and protecting the historic environment.
  • Promoting public access, appreciation and enjoyment of the historic environment.
  • Promoting distinctive regeneration and sustainable development through heritage.

Conserving and protecting the historic environment

Cadw works to conserve and protect the historic environment and to promote regeneration through heritage. It does this by:

  • Identifying places of special historic significance.
  • Advising planning authorities as part of the planning process.
  • Advising other public bodies on environmental assessments.
  • Providing advice and guidance on good conservation practice to property owners and occupiers.
  • Giving grants for conservation, maintenance and repair of historic buildings and scheduled ancient monuments. Cadw grant-aids community heritage projects. It also works with other funders to help owners put together a funding package.

Enjoying the historic environment

Cadw welcomes 1.2 million visitors a year to 127 historic monuments which it manages on behalf of the Welsh Government. These include some of Wales’s best-known sites, including Tintern Abbey and Harlech Castle.

We provide access to these sites and use them as showcases for the history of Wales. By doing this, we aim to encourage people to explore and appreciate the historic environment.

The sites managed by Cadw are a fraction of the sites, monuments and historic features in Wales. Traces of history are all around us. You are never far from a building or site of historic interest. Cadw and its partners are responsible for recording them and monitoring their condition.


To protect and promote the Welsh historic environment, Cadw works with a range of organisations and networks. From large national institutions to modest local groups, everyone has a part to play in the heritage of Wales.

Archaeological Trusts

The four Welsh Archaeological Trusts were founded over thirty years ago to provide archaeological advice for all of Wales

Historic Environment Group

Welsh ministers established this group in 2004. It takes a strategic overview of issues and opportunities in the historic environment and promote a common approach to addressing them.

Built Heritage Forum

Cadw liaises closely with Welsh local authorities especially on planning matters. The Built Heritage Forum provides a network for Wales's 25 planning authorities (22 councils and 3 national park authorities) and other sector partners.

The future delivery of historic environment services at a National Level

Information on the future of functions delivered by Cadw and the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales, following a consideration of options and decision by the Minister for Sport and Culture in January 2014, can be accessed here.

More information

More information can be found on the Cadw website.

Visit: Cadw website (external link)