We often enjoy a stroll around Milford Waterfront. There’s always so much to see and do and this year the walk has been given an added interactive feature. Three new heritage trails have been created as part of a Heritage Lottery Funded project, coordinated by Milford Youth Matters. These walks may already be familiar to you, however, some of the histories may not. Izzy and I had a lovely time exploring Milford Waterfront’s New Heritage Walking Trails take a look:
Parking at Milford Waterfront
There is plenty of free parking available courtesy of Milford Waterfront. We chose to park in one of the under Victoria Bridge Carparks. This is perfect if you want to start your walking trail from the Historic Haven (red) route as we did. There is also a small car park on the hill behind The Harbourmaster pub and in-between Marthas and Spinnaker. This is closest to the Waterways (blue) route. The main car park on Mackerel Quay is best for the Energy Kingdom (yellow) route.
Find out more about parking and how to find Milford Waterfront here: https://www.milfordwaterfront.co.uk/discover/useful-things-to-know
Milford Waterfront’s New Heritage Walking Trails
Milford Waterfront’s New Heritage Walking Trails consists of three trails, Historic Haven, Water Ways, and Energy Kingdom. You can complete all three trails as we did, choose one trail at a time or just dip into a little bit of history when you happen to spot one of the banners during your visit.
When you get to a banner, you will also see a poster on the lamppost featuring stories and amazing artwork created by pupils from Milford Haven School. Scan the QR code to read the full stories written by talented youngsters.
We parked under the bridge and walked to Phoenix Bowl. We began with the Historic Haven route, walking all around Milford Marina in a clockwise route. This can be a circular walk by crossing the Dock Bridge (provided it is closed), or you can walk the trail and back which is particularly handy if you’re planning on treating yourself to a drink, meal, or spot of shopping after completing the trail.
Historic Haven Heritage Trail
We looked for the red banners on lampposts. Izzy enjoyed scanning the barcode and reading about the history of “our blessed haven”, Milford Haven. We read about the history of our town from 1793 to the present day. We learned about the settling of the Quaker families, the fascinating founders (and how those familiar street names came to be), and how our town came to be. If you want to learn even more about the Quakers, Milford Haven also has an interesting Quaker’s Walk to enjoy.
Along the way, we enjoyed the marina view. It’s beautiful in all weathers. The Historic Heritage Trail contrastingly ends with a look to the future, near the new hotel which is currently being built.
Waterways Heritage Trail
From the new hotel, we crossed the road and walked past Milford Museum. The museum has recently reopened after a major refurbishment. We can’t wait to visit again and it would be particularly enjoyable to visit whilst walking the heritage trail. Unfortunately, it was closed during our visit, so we crossed the road back to Scott’s Sweet Shop and started looking for blue banners on lampposts, to discover the Waterways Heritage Trail.
This part of the route brings you past the shops and cafes and therefore is a little busier. We took extra care to social distance here. On this route, we learned about the history of a local skipper, Ralph Light. This was a very special piece of writing as it was written by Ralph’s great-grandson, Daniel Light. How lovely is that?
We continued on to read about a real-life pirate from Milford Haven, Howell Davies. Izzy enjoyed this as she learned a lot about him in school. It’s fascinating!
At our next stop we learned about Milford’s natural harbour and were reminded of William Shakespeare’s quote from Cymbeline:
‘…how far it is to this same blessed Milford: and by the way tell me how Wales was made so happy as to inherit such a haven…’
Lastly, we read about the natural features and wonderful wildlife we’re fortunate to be able to see in this area.
Along your way as well as enjoying the marina views, take a look at the many cafes and shops that there are to choose from. You could stop for refreshments along the way or plan where you want to eat on your return walk or during your next visit.
Energy kingdom Heritage Trail
Did you know that Milford Haven is the largest energy Port in the UK? Along the Energy Kingdom trail, we read about how this natural harbour has been used over the years, from a Viking chieftain sheltering his fleet of 23 ships in the Haven in 854AD to large tankers today currently transporting LNG gas. As one of the deepest natural harbours in the World (26 meters) it has had so many different uses over time. On the Energy Trail, we are also encouraged to think about the future of the Port. Perhaps the Port will make use of its greatest natural asset and invest in tidal energy and wind energy to head towards a carbon-neutral future.
Ice Cream at Milford Marina
The energy trail ends along Mackeral Quay. We continued towards Pier Head to watch some boats coming in through the Dock gates. Then we treated ourselves to ice cream from The Scoop Ice Cream Parlour. We also passed their creamery where the delicious ice cream gets made along the walk. Purely for educational purposes (ahem), Isabelle enjoyed The Scoop Ice Cream Trawler! I had sorbet in a cone and it was so tasty. We’d planned to take a photo of us both together with our treats but they didn’t last long as we enjoyed them so much.
The New Heritage Trail at Milford Marina
This trail and the QR codes on lampposts are an asset to Milford Marina. So often when we walk around our town, we want to know more about the interesting history. As I said earlier, these walks can be enjoyed as one walk, stopping and scanning every QR code, or you could choose to learn about one section at a time or just scan if you happen to spot a Heritage Trail lampost while spending time on the Marina.
For example, if you happen to be at The Cheesy Cow, then you will also find yourself near to The Waterway’s information about Milford’s charming pirate, Howell Davies, so scan and enjoy the story and artwork. If these had been in place when Izzy was learning about pirates, we’d have popped down for extra research, in addition to popping to the local library and museum.
I think this is a lovely trail for a multi-generational walk as grandparents and parents can share their memories of Milford Haven too.
Well done to all the artists and writers and everyone involved in this project- you should be very proud!
So put on your walking shoes, charge your mobile phone* and discover Milford Haven through the Heritage Walking Trails!
*Each lampost contains artwork and a story summary so the walk could still be enjoyed without a mobile phone but scan the QR codes for the full experience.
Pin this post for later:
For more information visit: https://www.milfordwaterfront.co.uk/whats-here/walking-in-milford-haven/heritage-walking-trails
Read more Free Days Out and Pembrokeshire posts here.