In 1992, as part of the Uplands Initiative, Gwynedd Archaeological Trust received funding from the Royal Commission on Ancient and Historical Monuments Wales (RCAHMW) to undertake a detailed EDM Survey of potential prehistoric stone axe working sites on Graiglwyd, Clip yr Orsedd and Dinas, Penmaenmawr discovered by S. Hazzledine Warren in 1919.
The Trust recorded and identified features which corresponded with the prehistoric axe working sites found by Warren as well as potential new sites. This resulted in the further study of the area in 1993, 1994 and 1995 where it was decided to excavate and examine a number of the features discovered in the preliminary survey.
In addition to this 1993 saw a second survey carried out in the areas of open countryside previously not covered through the first survey or affected by post-medieval quarrying. This second survey was funded by Cadw: Welsh Historic Monuments, who were concerned over the threats presented by the anticipated expansion of the granite quarry.
In conjunction to the work carried out by Cadw and Gwynedd Archaeological Trust a third survey was also carried out by an MA student of Bangor University concentrating on the industrial archaeology of the post-medieval quarry.
These further developments resulted in the Graiglwyd project, as it became known, quickly evolving from an archaeological survey of features associated with Neolithic axe workings into a broader based assessment of human settlement and exploitation on the Penmaenmaer massif. The projects resulted in a series of articles and reports, both interim and published.