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Thanks to Fishguard harbour’s natural advantages, the town maintained international trade-links for many centuries, while the craggy properties of the coastal caves supported an alternative form of economy.

Fishguard harbour’s natural properties made it a uniquely safe and reliant harbour through the centuries. Not only did the town support its own fishing industry, specialising in herring trade, but it also offered reliable anchorage to international trading vessels and shelter from turbulent weather. Meanwhile, the many secreted coves and caverns dotted along the coastline helped maintain a more illicit form of trade, namely smuggling activities.

Gary Jones sat down with Ports, Past and Present to talk about the history and heritage of Fishguard’s international trade links and he remembers local names for some of the secret smuggling coves.

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