print logo

History of Milford Fish Docks

Milford Haven became home to a thriving and important fishing port in the 19th Century. On 27th September 1888, the steam trawler ‘Sybil’ was the first vessel to enter Milford Docks.

Trawler owners from ports all around the British coast were quick to spot the advantages of fishing from Milford Haven, the most important of which were: proximity to good fishing grounds, a sheltered anchorage, and direct rail links to London and other centres where the fish could be marketed.

Throughout the first half of the 20th Century, Milford residents boasted that each weekday was a pay-day, as the fishermen were noted for spending their hard earned income. Even through the years of the Great Depression of the 1920s and 30s Milford sustained its busy and bustling quayside atmosphere.

Today, Milford Haven is home to the largest fishing port in Wales.

To find out more about Milford Haven’s fascinating history and its role in the fishing, whaling and oil industries, visit Milford Haven Museum.

 

Milford Fish Docks Timeline


1888

The Lowestoft registered steam trawler 'Sybil' was the first fishing vessel to enter the newly opened dock on 27th September

1890

Cardiff Pure Ice and Cold Storage opens the first ice factory in the port

1906

First smoke house is opened

1908

On 2nd September, 29 trawlers land fish for Monday market, largest ever Monday landing at the port

1914

24 Belgian trawlers and 700 Belgian civilians arrive in the port, evacuees from war torn Belgium

1925

Circa 1925 an iconic poster was designed by the Great Western Railway which advertised Milford Haven as 'where Fish comes from'; reinforcing the significance of Milford Haven as a fishing port

1929

Spanish Pareja fleet starts to land catches at the port

1931

Milford Haven Ice Co. acquires ice making factory from Brand and Curzon

1942

24 Dutch trawlers arrive at port to form mine-sweeping squadron

1946

Fleet returns from Naval service

1998

Unique electronic Fish Auction facility introduced

2012

Record tonnages landed at Milford Fish Docks - the highest in 10 years

2013

Record tonnages landed at Milford Fish Docks - the highest in 15 years

2013

New flake ice plant installed at Milford Fish Docks - the only one in Wales

2015

New box washing facility, chill store, storage units and processing units opened

2018

Celebrating 130th anniversary