Wednesday, 27 January 2016

A shoreline wander at Burry Port

The view of Burry Port familiar to us, as there is a car boot sale on the grass the far end of the harbour, every Saturday through the summer.  I doubt Amelia Earhart was terribly impressed by her first view of Wales.

Not a lot of people know this.  Burry Port is such an unremarkable little village (not even a town) near Llanelli, but for one day in June 1928 it was EPIC!  Amelia Earhart put the name on everyone's lips. However, what the plaque doesn't say is that she was mainly a passenger on that flight - the actual pilot was one Wilmer Schultz and there was a mechanic on board too.  She just took the controls a couple of times, though she would have preferred to pilot it herself.  They ran out of fuel and landed at Burry Port, quite a way short of Southampton, which was their planned landing point.  Their starting point had been Newfoundland.  Heaven knows what the locals thought when the little plane landed.  I can just imagine a few old fishermen mending their nets,  puffing their pipes and saying "Dduw, Dduw" to themselves.

She was a determined lady, however, and in 1932 single-handedly flew the Atlantic, sustained by soup and smelling-salts (always a good combination!)  Sadly, her Round the World flight in 1937 ended in disaster over the Pacific and neither she nor the wreckage of her plane were ever found.

This was the view from that spot, so she must have put her little plane down here, pre Gin-Palace Park.  The harbour was built between 1830 and 1836 to replace the one at Pembrey, which had been about 1/4 mile further West.  It was once a very busy place where coal was exported from the nearby valleys.

Seagull with breakfast.

The little stumpy lighthouse.  It was built around 1842.

Misty views across to the side of the Gower peninsula.

The breakwater beyond the lighthouse, looking west towards Pembrey beach/sands.

There was a brief glimpse of sunlight as we strolled along.  The wind was a trifle . . . brisk . . . but blew the cobwebs away.

I took half a dozen photos trying to capture the wind blowing spray back into the harbour - this was about the most successful one.

Sulphur-coloured lichen growing on a stone slab.

The view west towards the very end of Pembrey beach.

A row of colourful cottages overlooks the harbour.


  1. All sorts of rumours as to how she met her death, conspiracy theories say she was spying on the Japanese, and was captured by the Kempetei and executed when the plane went down

  2. What a mystery surrounds Amelia.
    I rather like the stumps lighthouse much like a child's toy.
    What a wonderful place you live in and near.

    cheers, parsnip

  3. Love the grey bleakness of your photos, captures Wales instantly when the weather is moody.

  4. That lichen is really the most amazing colour BB. And I do love those cottages overlooking the harbour. I used to visit Wales a lot when I lived in the Midlands, but sadly it is really too far to travel from here in North Yorkshire.

  5. Beautiful moody photos of the wintery sea.
    I remember stories of Amelia Earhart from my younger days. Very sad that she was lost on her Pacific flight. A brave woman.

  6. We were over that way a couple of weeks ago, the weather was dry but very breezy. Gorgeous beaches.

  7. Simon - fascinating. I'd never heard that.

    parsnip - like the mystery surrounding Glenn Miller's loss.

    thelma - oh yes, we make a speciality of grey bleakness here in Wales! Summer and winter both!

    Pat - it is stunning and the only colour in the landscape. I hope my photos bring back some happy memories for you anyway. You could always have a coach trip weekend away . . .

    DW - it was very hazy, so difficult to get any definition in the photos. I agree, a brave woman.

    Suzie - I hope you waved!