New Quay

New Quay
New Quay
Welsh: Cei Newydd
New Quay 2.jpg
Overlooking the harbour at New Quay
Population 1,200 [1]
    - Cardiff 90 mi (140 km) SE 
Principal area Ceredigion
Ceremonial county Dyfed
Country Wales
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town New Quay
Postcode district SA45
Dialling code 01545
Police Dyfed-Powys
Fire Mid and West Wales
Ambulance Welsh
EU Parliament Wales
UK Parliament Ceredigion
Welsh Assembly Ceredigion
List of places: UK • Wales • Ceredigion
St Llwchaiarn's church

New Quay (Welsh: Cei Newydd) is a seaside town in Ceredigion, West Wales with a resident population of around 1,200 people.[1] Located on Cardigan Bay with a harbour and large sandy beaches, it remains a popular seaside resort and traditional fishing town.



Until the early 19th century, New Quay merely consisted of a few thatched cottages surrounded by agricultural land, the natural harbour providing a safe mooring for fishing boats and a few small trading vessels. The "New Quay Harbour Act" was passed in 1835 and a stone pier was constructed at a cost of £7,000. Trading activity increased and new houses were built as economic migrants arrived. Shipbuilding began to take place and the town increased in size with the construction of terraced housing up the slopes of the sheltered bay.[2]

By the 1840s, more than three hundred workmen were being employed in shipbuilding in three centres, New Quay itself, Traethgwyn, a bay just to the north, and Cei-bach, a pebble beach further north below a wooded cliff. Here were constructed not only smacks and schooners for sailing along the coast, but also larger vessels for sailing to the Americas and Australia. At that time, as well as shipwrights, New Quay had half a dozen blacksmith shops, three sail makers, three rope walks and a foundry. Most of the male inhabitants of the town were mariners or employed in occupations linked with the sea.[3]

By 1870, shipbuilding had ceased at New Quay but most of the men living there still went to sea. There were navigation schools in the town and many of the last square riggers that sailed the world were captained by New Quay men. The observant tourist can still see the old warehouses, now put to new uses, lengths of chain, metal rings and capstans, and a list of tolls for exports and imports can still be seen outside the harbourmaster's office.[3]

Tourism and attractions

Key attractions for holidaymakers include the picturesque harbour and expansive sandy beach, as well as the ability to see the population of bottlenose dolphins that lives in Cardigan Bay. The town has a heritage centre and marine wildlife centre, as well as the usual collection of shops and restaurants. Nearby New Quay Honey Farm, the largest bee farm in Wales, has a live bee exhibition and sells honey, mead and beeswax. The outskirts of the town feature many large holiday parks and caravan sites.

The annual Cardigan Bay Regatta, usually in August, has been conducted since at least the 1870s. Events now include inshore sports (swimming, rowing, etc.) and dinghy and cruiser racing.[4]

In addition to the hospitality industry, there is still significant employment in sea fishing and fish processing.

Local facilities

As well as shops, banks, restaurants and pubs, New Quay houses a large primary school, a doctors' surgery and a small branch of the county library service.

The town also has a fire station and an RNLI lifeboat station, which houses two boats: a Mersey class and a D class.[5]

Public transport is provided by regular bus services to Aberaeron, Cardigan and Aberystwyth.

Just a few miles outside New Quay is a honey farm. There is also New Quay's famous £1 shop (Now the £1.20 shop). There is a park at the top of New Quay right next to a tennis court which may be used by the public.

Links with Dylan Thomas

New Quay is one of several places in Wales to claim a link with writer Dylan Thomas, who lived in the area from September 1944 until May 1945.[6] Accordingly, the town is often cited as partial inspiration for the fictitious village of Llareggub in Under Milk Wood.[7]

Much of the location filming for The Edge of Love, starring Sienna Miller and Keira Knightley a 2008 film based around Thomas, was carried out in and around New Quay.[8]

The town has played on its connections with Thomas to attract visitors in recent years, such as through the creation of The Dylan Thomas Trail[9] which maps the poet's links with the area.[10]


  1. ^ a b Office for National Statistics : Census 2001 : Parish Headcounts : Ceredigion
  2. ^ Jenkins, J. Geraint. Ceredigion: Interpreting an Ancient County. Gwasg Careg Gwalch (2005) pg. 63.
  3. ^ a b Jenkins, J. Geraint. Ceredigion: Interpreting an Ancient County. Gwasg Careg Gwalch (2005) pg. 64.
  4. ^ "Cardigan Bay Regatta in its 126th year". New Quay Yacht Club. Retrieved 2008-02-04. 
  5. ^ "New Quay Fleet". RNLI. 
  6. ^ BBC Wales - Arts - Dylan Thomas - New Quay
  7. ^ See pp285-313 in D N Thomas (2004)Dylan Remembered 1935-53, vol 2, Seren, as well as published articles collected at
  8. ^ The Edge of Love (2008) - Filming locations
  9. ^ D N Thomas (2002) The Dylan Thomas Trail, Y Lolfa
  10. ^ Holidays - New Quay Tourist Information

External links

Coordinates: 52°12′46.31″N 4°21′32.36″W / 52.2128639°N 4.3589889°W / 52.2128639; -4.3589889

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