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New project to capture memories to mark 80 years of the Castlemartin Range

A new project plans to recognise the 80th anniversary of the creation of the Castlemartin Range by capturing stories from the people that experienced this important chapter in the area’s past.

The military took over the area known as Castlemartin Range in 1939, prior to which it had been tenanted farmland on the extensive Cawdor Estate owned by Earl Cawdor of Aberdeenshire.

Penyholt Farm before the Castlemartin Range was created in 1939.
Penyholt Farm before the Castlemartin Range was created in 1939.

Interviews, photographs and articles will be combined to retell the history and preserve it for future generations in a series of videos to tell the story of those who lived and worked in the area around this time.

Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority Ranger for the Castlemartin Range, Lynne Houlston said: “If you have any stories, memories or information from the days before and during the time the military moved in, please get in touch.

“We are slowly losing the generation that lived through this time so it is important to secure those memories so that people can access, listen to and read about Castlemartin’s history.

“I’d be particularly interested to hear from anyone who has any photographs, letters or newspaper articles featuring the houses, farms or people that could be copied and used to illustrate this time of change in the 1930s.”

The Park Authority and Ministry of Defence have worked together to improve public access and land management for conservation on the Range for more than 30 years, including guided walks which allow access to areas that are usually restricted.

The resulting videos and information will be featured on the Authority’s website

This project is funded by the Defence Infrastructure Organisation’s Conservation Stewardship Fund.

If you have any information that you wish to share please contact Lynne Houlston via 01646 662213, 07866 771188 or

Published 12 April 2019

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