Gower Peninsula

 
   
   

Pennard

   

 

   

Pennard is the next village on the B4436 after Kittle. St Maryís church is situated at the crossroads and houses a memorial tablet to the poet Vernon Watkins. The road continues straight onward past Little Highway and Great Highway farms to the left and right respectively. These are now extensively modernised but were once home to the most successful of the Gower smugglers! The old Pennard pound is on the right hand side of the road.

Passing Pennard Golf Club at the start of Southgate the road ends at the National Trust car park at Pennard Cliffs. The Three Cliffs Coffee shop serves meals and wholesome snacks as well as being a General Store and photographers gallery. Jewels by the Sea is a small but charming bead shop which Prince Charles and Camilla visited when they came to Swansea. The car park usually fills up at the weekends as this is a popular starting point for cliff walk and a popular destination for families and nature lovers.

A walk eastwards along the gorse covered cliffs offers spectacular views over the Bristol Channel and the Devonshire Coast and Lundy Island are often visible. The two bone caves Bacon Hole and Mitchin Hole are located on this area of coastline where remains of Iron Age implements and various animals including bears and rhinoceros have been found.

Bacon Hole is the smaller and more easily accessible of the two, and is found by following a path down from the cliff top.

Continuing further along the cliff top to Huntís Bay and the rugged limestone cliffs of High Tor the number of tourists dwindle and the single track road ends before a steep path leading down to the enigmatic and beautiful bay of Pwll Du.

Taking the West Cliff route from the car park it is possible to continue along the cliff top to Pobbles Bay noting the spectacular view of the Oxwich headland and sweeping curve of Oxwich Bay.

The much photographed Three Cliffs Bay is accessible from Pobbles at low tide and from Parkmill. Both routes involve more than a short walk ensuring that the area is never overcrowded although pupils from Swansea schools are sometimes seen studying the fauna and flora of the salt marsh. The Three Cliffs themselves form a lovely curve complete with archway and Pennard Pill meanders through the salt marsh under the shadow of Pennard Castle.

Pennard castle enjoys a dramatic location on the eastern cliff side Three Cliffs Bay. The first castle on the site was a rudimentary construction of timber which was replaced in the thirteenth century by a more elaborate stone structure complete with two towers, a gateway and portcullis.

By the mid seventeenth century as a result of continues sand encroachment and an almost magical overnight sandstorm the old village of Pennard was buried and the castle reduced to ruins we now see today.

Cattle grazing and the sight of solitary grey heron fishing add to the peaceful beauty of the landscape. Perfect for walking, climbing and sightseeing but Three Cliffs is unsuitable for swimming due to dangerous currents.

   
   

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