At the westerly tip of the Pembroke Peninsula stands the fishing village of Angle with its proud tradition of lifeboat service. Though little more than a long street of cottages, Angle is full of character – and characters. Visit one of the village pubs and you’re sure to hear stirring tales of shipwreck and rescue along this rocky stretch of the Pembrokeshire coast.
West Angle bay is a sheltered, sandy cove at the entrance to the busy harbour of Milford Haven, while fishing boats and small yachts wait for the tide on the mudflats of East Angle bay.
And being at the entrance to the Haven, Angle was well fortified in Victorian times with cliff-top gun-batteries and an island fort. Nowadays this fort on Thorn Island is a pleasant hotel, just a short boat trip from the shore.
Angle Point, between the lifeboat station and the tiny Point House Inn, is an ideal place to relax and watch the ships go by on Milford Haven.
As well as the regular Irish ferries, you’ll see Milford trawlers and pleasure boats of every kind, as well as a constant stream of oil and gas tankers visiting the refinery jetties further up the Haven.
As one of the finest and deepest natural harbours in the world, Milford Haven attracted the attention of the oil industry in the late 1950s, and by the 1970s vast supertankers of 300,000 tons had become a common sight in the harbour, off-loading their cargoes of Middle Eastern crude oil.
The Milford Haven oil industry has declined sharply in recent years with a couple of refineries shutting and the closure of the oil-fired Pembroke Power Station. But the Texaco refinery, built in 1964 and expanded several times, remains in full operation and is one of the most dramatic sights of the Pembroke Peninsula, especially at night.