[pem-brook-sheer, -sher, -brohk-]
Pembrokeshire, Welsh Sir Benfro, county, 614 sq mi (1,590 sq km), SW Wales. In 1974, the county of Pembrokeshire became part of the nonmetropolitan county of Dyfed, but in 1996 Dyfed was dissolved and Pembrokeshire was restored as a unitary authority.
Pembrokeshire principal area
colspan="2" style="text-align: center; background: white;" - Geography
- Total
- % Water
Ranked 5th
1,590 km²
? %
Admin HQ Haverfordwest
ONS code 00NS
- ()
- Density

/ km²
Ethnicity 99.2% White
Welsh language
- Any skills
Ranked 8th

Pembrokeshire Council


MEPs Wales
Pembrokeshire (Sir Benfro) is a county in the southwest of Wales in the United Kingdom.


Pembrokeshire is a maritime county, bordered by the sea on three sides, by Ceredigion (Cardiganshire) to the northeast and by Carmarthenshire to the east.

The population (United Kingdom Census 2001) was 114,131. The administrative headquarters and historic county town is Haverfordwest and other settlements include Pembroke itself, Pembroke Dock, Milford Haven, Fishguard, Tenby, Saundersfoot, Narberth, Neyland and Newport. St David's, in the west of the county, is the United Kingdom's smallest city.

The highest point of the county is at Foel Cwmcerwyn (1759 ft/536 m).

The county boasts 170 miles (≈275 km) of coastline comprising important seabird breeding sites and numerous bays and sandy beaches. Almost all of the coast is included in the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park. A large estuary and natural harbour known as Milford Haven cuts deeply into the coast, being formed by the confluence of the Western Cleddau (which goes through Haverfordwest), the Eastern Cleddau and rivers Creswell and Carew. The estuary is bridged by Cleddau Bridge as part of the A477 between Neyland and Pembroke Dock : the next bridges upstream on the Cleddaus are at Haverfordwest and by Canaston Bridge.

Major bays include Newport Bay, Fishguard Bay and St Bride's Bay. There are many small islands off the coast of the county, the largest of which are Ramsey Island, Skomer Island and Caldey Island.

In the north of the county are the Preseli Mountains (Mynyddoedd Preseli), a wide stretch of high moorland with many prehistoric monuments and the source of the bluestones used in the construction of Stonehenge in England.

Elsewhere the county is relatively flat, most of the land being used for lowland farming of dairy cows, arable crops and oil seed rape.

See the list of places in Pembrokeshire for villages, towns and cities in Pembrokeshire.


The county was founded as a county palatine in 1138 with Gilbert de Clare as the first Earl of Pembroke. It has long been split between its mainly English-speaking south (known as "Little England beyond Wales") and its mainly Welsh-speaking north, along an imaginary line called the Landsker.

The Act of Union of 1536 divided the county into hundreds which followed with some modifications the lines of the ancient subdivision into cantrefs, which went back to before the Norman conquest. The 1536 hundreds were (clockwise from the north-east): Cilgerran or Kilgerran, Cemais or Kemes, Dewisland or Dewsland, Roose, Castlemartin, Narbeth and Dungleddy or Daugleddau. The Genuki web pages on Pembrokeshire include a list of the parishes within each hundred.


Narberth is home to Radio Pembrokeshire, Radio Carmarthenshire and Scarlet FM broadcasting to 100,000 listeners every week.

There are five local newspapers based in Pembrokeshire. The most widely read is the Western Telegraph (part of the Newsquest group).

The artists Gwen John and her brother Augustus were both born in Pembrokeshire. Graham Sutherland painted locally between 1934 and 1936, gaining inspiration from the landscape.


The main towns in the county are well served with bus and train services, but those living in more rural parts have little or no access to public transportation.

There are no motorways in Pembrokeshire. There are currently demands for the A40 from St. Clears to Haverfordwest to be made fully dual carriageway. The road is used heavily by traffic from the ferry port in Fishguard which then follows the A40 south to Haverfordwest and then meets the dual carriageway at St. Clears.

The nearest motorway to the county town of Haverfordwest is the M4 which terminates at Pont Abraham in Carmarthenshire, some to the east.

The A477 which runs from St. Clears to the port of Pembroke Dock is long, of which only are part-dual carriageway. This road is heavily used by businesses and tourists visiting Pembrokeshire and improvements to the road have been made in recent years.

The Cleddau Bridge connects South Pembrokeshire with North Pembrokeshire across the Cleddau Estuary.

There are three branch railway lines- terminating at Fishguard, Pembroke Dock and Milford Haven.



The main industry in Pembrokeshire is tourism. Tenby and its surrounding area attracting the most visitors.

Oil and gas

The banks of the Cleddau Estuary are dominated by the oil and gas industry with two oil refineries, two large liquified natural gas (LNG) terminals and a large National Grid switching centre. A gas-fired power station has been proposed for the site of the old oil-fired Pembroke Power Station which closed in 1997 and subsequently demolished in 2000. The two oil refineries in Pembrokeshire are:

  • Chevron: 214,000 bpd (barrels per day) and
  • Murco:

The LNG terminals on the north side of the river, just outside milford haven opened in 2008 with a contoversial pipeline running through many rural farms and country sides. The pipeline supplies much of south wales and south west england with gas.


Pembrokeshire's mild climate means that crops such as its famous new potatoes often arrive in British shops earlier in the year than produce from other parts of the UK. As well as arable crops such as potatoes, the other main agricultural activities are dairy farming of cattle for milk and cheese, sheep farming, beef production and some other arable crops, such as rapeseed. Falling farm incomes have led to diversification into other novel farming and tourism related activities. From 1,700 km² of land, about 1,260 (74%) are used by agriculture. The majority of this land (60%) is down to permanent grassland and 26% is arable. Farm revenues are less than the UK average, but agriculture still provides 7,000 jobs.

The former large sea fishing industry around Milford Haven is now greatly reduced, although limited commercial fishing still takes place.


The unofficial flag of Pembrokeshire consists of a yellow cross on a blue field. In the centre of the cross is a green pentagon bearing a red and white Tudor rose. The rose is divided quarterly and counterchanged: the inner and outer roses have alternating red and white quarters.

On television and film

Pembrokeshire is a popular location for filming locations. The following is a list of movies and television programmes filmed in Pembrokeshire:

Local government

Under the Local Government Act 1888, an elected county council was set up to take over the functions of the Pembrokeshire Quarter Sessions. This, and the administrative county of Pembrokeshire were abolished under the Local Government Act 1972, with Pembrokeshire forming two districts of the new county of Dyfed : South Pembrokeshire and Preseli - the split being made at the request of local authorities in the area. In 1996, under the Local Government (Wales) Act 1994, the county of Dyfed was broken up into its constituent parts, and Pembrokeshire has been a unitary authority.


Top performing secondary schools in Pembrokeshire, (5 GCSEs, grades A-C), according to the latest inspection by Estyn

72% Sir Thomas Picton School, Haverfordwest

68% Ysgol Dewi Sant, St Davids

64% [Milford Haven School, Milford Haven

57% Ysgol y Preseli, Crymych (Bilingual)

57% Ysgol Bro Gwaun, Fishguard (Bilingual)

51% Greenhill School, Tenby

45% Pembroke School, Pembroke

42% [Tasker-Milward V.C. School]], [[Haverfordwest]

Places of interest


Visitor attractions

Historical places


Broad Haven Little Haven Marloes Freshwater East Freshwater West Broad Haven South Barafundle Bay North Beach (tenby) South Beach (tenby) Poppit Sands (Ceridigion - Pembrokeshire Border)


External links

Further reading

  • James, J. Ivor, Molleston Baptist Church-Reflections on the Founders' Tercentenary, V.G. Lodwick & Sons Ltd., Carmarthen, copyright 1968.

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