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Echoes / Communities / Llangwm

Llangwm is a small rural community nestling on the banks of the River Cleddau. It has an amazing history encompassing immigrants and settlers; an unusual dialect; and many fables.

Recent work has revealed amazing elements of the village’s past:

  • Mesolithic settlement(s) thought to date from 4,000-10,000BC have been discovered following field walking at Llangwm Ferry and a 3 week dig at Great Nash.
  • Recently the discovery of a 2,000 year old chariot burial just outside the village is of international importance, the first Celtic chariot burial to be discovered in Wales.
  • Vikings overwintered in the safe waters of the MIlford Haven waterway. Their presence is reflected in local place names such as Freystrop.
  • The De la Roche family, builders of Roch and Benton Castle, Pill Priory, Llangwm Church and an early medieval fortified manor house at Great Nash.
  • Oliver Cromwell sailed up the Cleddau and anchored off Llangwm during his campaign to lay siege to the Royalists in Pembroke Castle.
  • 18th and 19th centuries. Sickness was endemic; typhoid, small pox and cholera were all present in the area. Villagers cut off the outside world as a means of preventing transmission.
  • Llangwm men and women played their part in both wars. Fishermen opted to serve in the Royal or Merchant Navy, while two young men volunteered for the new service of the RAF in WWII. Women had an important role in providing labour for the local farms and in maintaining families and the home. 
  • The Cockle Women of Llangwm were known as a hardy breed who would carry panniers of fish and shellfish to Haverfordwest and Tenby.

Today Llangwm is expanding, but the history of the village will not be forgotten. The Llangwm History Society has a collection of photographs, documents and memorabilia and carries out local research on a regular basis.

Image courtesy of Steve Richards.