A coastal view from the Pembrokeshire Coast Path

National Trail Officer's Survey: 9 West Angle to Angle Village

27th June 2014

Wednesday 4th June
West Angle to Angle Peninsular Walk, which I think of as the Angle hammerhead because of the way it looks on the map.  This circuit is a little less than 4 miles or about 6km.  The Coast Path approaches the open coast as the estuary opens out and gives less shelter from the storms, the landform becomes increasingly rugged.  To the West is the open sea, whereas to the North you are looking across the estuary to Dale and St Ishmaels. 
Photo Thorn Island

I parked in the large free National Park car park at West Angle and walked the circuit clockwise.  The character of the path is field edge again, after a short section of open cliff.  The particular interest that I find is the military history.  You can just make out three Palmerstone Forts from beside Thorn Island.  There is Thorn Island itself and across the water West Blockhouse and Dale Fort.  The approach to Chapel Bay is along a lane that was reputedly used by soldiers probably going to the now overgrown Pill Box from Chapel Bay Fort.  This lane was a mass of flowers as I walked it. 
Photo: Flowery Lane

Chapel Bay Fort is in the process of being restored by the owner and one of the muzzle loading cannons from the late 1800s can be seen from the Coast Path.  The cannon was resurrected from a watery grave when it was lost overboard while being shipped to fort in the 1800s.   As you round the corner of the peninsular you pass the modern lifeboat station near the ruined original lifeboat station.  From here one gets the best views of the huge modern gas terminal and the massive bulk carrier ships when they are in the Haven. 

Soon the path becomes a track and you come to the Point House Pub which is reputed to have a fire that never goes out.    I surveyed on up the lane, where of course you might decide to go back the way you came (as it looks different going back the other way), whereas I survey the whole route and go back along the road, through the village, past the Hibernian Inn to West Angle. There is an unusual 14th Century Tower in Angle Village that is well worth a visit.  Angle also boasts the remnants of a medieval field system.  
Photo: Angle Tower

To do most of the whole peninsula one needs to link between Freshwater West and Angle Village:  I usually park in the small northern Freshwater West car park and follow the Coast Path north west for about 0.6 miles or 1km then turn onto the inland path at Gravel Bay.  This path leads to the Rocket Cart House that has views both of the Haven and out to sea.  From the Rocket Cart House turn left along the road (fast cars) for 35m, turn right down the dead end road that leads to the Coast Path, then left again to follow the Coast Path anticlockwise to the start.  10 miles or 16km.
The Rocket Cart House is so named because it used to be a coastguard station.  It housed a cart that carried rockets to pass a line and breeches buoy to ships in distress. 

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Thorn Island
Flowery Lane
Angle Tower