Seaside Walk February, 2016

Thirty members and guests turned up on a cold Sunday in February to follow our vice-chairman, Lyn John, on a tour of Seaside’s historic past and the blue plaques Llanelli Community Heritage has erected there over the past twelve years.

As the name suggests, the shallow waters of the Burry Inlet backed by the wide expanse of Carmarthen Bay once lapped the sandy shores of this westerly suburb of Llanelli town. Now a largely residential area, the lines of neat workers’ cottages in the terraced streets are testimony to its industrial past.

A plaque in Marine Street commemorates the Welsh Tinplate and Metal Stamping Works (1898-1978) which replaced the old Cambrian Copper Works and Llanelly Lead Works. It employed more than a thousand workers, mostly women, who produced enamelled saucepans, plates and bowls, army tinplated mess tins and galvanized buckets.

Lyn walked us through Seaside’s past along Marine Street, over the bridge spanning the Lliedi river where the Carmarthenshire Dock, was one of the earliest docks in Wales.* Then along North Dock and its small commercial development, past the Sosban restaurant whose owners have carefully and elegantly restored the former hydraulic engine house.

The walk ended with a very welcome cup of tea sponsored by member Paul Brookfield, at the Bucket and Spade, now a lively family pub. The pub’s former name tells of a different past: The Cornish Arms was named for the thriving trade with England’s west coast.

* See the photograph of this former dock – an abandoned supermarket trolley tells the story!