Pembrokeshire

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Pembrokeshire (/ˈpɛmbrʊkʃɪər//ˈpɛmbrʊkʃər/, or /ˈpɛmbrkʃɪər/; Welsh: Sir Benfro [ˈsiːr ˈbɛnvrɔ]) is a county in the southwest of Wales. It is bordered by Carmarthenshire to the east, Ceredigion to the northeast, and the sea everywhere else.

The county is home to Pembrokeshire Coast National Park, the only national park in the United Kingdom established primarily because of the coastline; the Park occupies more than a third of the area of the county and includes the Preseli Hills in the north as well as the 186-mile (299 km) Pembrokeshire Coast Path.

Industry is nowadays focused on agriculture (86 per cent of land use), oil and gas, and tourism; Pembrokeshire’s beaches have won many awards. Historically mining and fishing were important activities. The county has a diverse geography with a wide range of geological features, habitats and wildlife. Its prehistory and modern history have been extensively studied, from tribal occupation, through Roman times, to Welsh, Norman and Flemish influences.

Pembrokeshire County Council’s headquarters are in the county town of Haverfordwest. The council has a majority of Independent members, but the county’s representatives in both the Welsh and Westminster Parliaments are Conservative. Pembrokeshire’s population was 122,439 at the 2011 census, an increase of 7.2 per cent from the 2001 figure of 114,131. Ethnically, the county is 99 per cent white and, for historical reasons, Welsh is more widely spoken in the north of the county than in the south.