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Carew is a village and parish on an inlet of Milford Haven in the hundred of Narberth, Pembrokeshire. It is situated 4½ miles north-east of the county town Pembroke. The eastern part of the parish is included in the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park.

The French Mill


The meaning of the name is disputed.[1] It is Welsh and could mean "fort on a hill" (Caer-rhiw), "fort by yews" (Caer-yw) or simply "forts" (Caerau). It is pronounced /'kε:ru/, or more traditionally /'kε:ri/. The village grew up to serve the nearby Norman castle. The parish includes several other villages and hamlets, including Cheriton (around the parish church), Milton, Newton, West Williamston, Sageston and Whitehill.

Carew High Cross east face

Textile mills gave Milton its name. In the 19th century there was a carding mill downstream, a weaving mill by the bridge, and a fulling mill upstream. West Williamston has an almost-disappeared industrial history. Limestone was quarried in the area for centuries. The stone was cut from slot-shaped flooded quarries communicating with the haven, known locally as "docks". These allowed stone to be dropped from the quarry faces directly into barges at the bottom. From there, stone was shipped to lime kilns all around the coast of North Pembrokeshire and Cardiganshire.[2] A small inland quarry still operates just north of Carew village. Besides limestone, anthracite was mined on a small scale for local consumption at Minnis Pit on the north-eastern edge of the parish.

Typical of South Pembrokeshire, the parish has been predominantly English-speaking since the 12th century.


  • The 13th century Norman castle is 180 yards west of the village.
  • The French Mill is a rare example of a tidal flour mill on a dam across the Carew inlet. The present building dates from the 18th century, but the French Mill was mentioned in 1476. The mill has not functioned since the 1930s, but its equipment is all still in place. It has two large undershot water wheels, driving seven sets of mill stones.
  • The Carew Cross, currently located on the road side in the village, is an important example of an 11th-century memorial Celtic cross, commemorating King Maredudd ab Edwin of Deheubarth (died 1035). The cross, 13 ft in height, is made from the local limestone. Similar to the Nevern cross, it consists of two parts, connected with a tenon joint. It is inscribed, on the west face:


  1. Charles, B. G, The Placenames of Pembrokeshire, National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth, 1992, ISBN 0-907158-58-7, Vol II, p 476
  2. Lewis, Topological Dictionary of Wales,1833

Outside links

Coordinates: 51°41′54″N 4°49′48″W / 51.69833°N 4.83°W / 51.69833; -4.83