Milford Haven has had a long association with fishing since the first trawler arrived in 1888.
Fishing grew in the first half of the twentieth century, with every day at the height of the boom reportedly being a ‘pay day’ according to local folklore, as the fishing crews sold their catches at the fish market and spent their earnings in the town. Milford Haven became known as 'where fish comes from' after the phrase was used in the Great Western Railway's advertising material.
As the fishing industry started to decline in the late 1980s, the vision to transform Milford Docks into a leisure and tourism facility began, with the development of Milford Marina and places to eat, shop, enjoy and stay.
Milford Haven remains as Wales' largest fishing port and throughout all the development, fresh fish has featured on restaurant menus here and fishmongers have remained selling fresh fish and shellfish on the quayside.
Love fish? Discover our guides to cooking with fish and learn more about our fishing heritage...
Buying fresh fish couldn’t be easier, especially if you visit your local fishmonger.
Fish is such a great option. There are so many varieties to choose between and have a wide range of flavours and textures – so there’s something for everyone. It’s a really healthy choice with plenty of nutrients - experts recommend at least two fish portions a week (one of fish should be oily like mackerel, salmon and fresh tuna). And it’s not as expensive as you might think.
In order to get really fresh fish and great prices we recommend seeking out your local fishmonger. As well as recommending a particular type of fish (some are more readily available than others depending on the season), they can also help with ideas for recipes and prepare the fish for use. If you ask nicely they may even show you how to do it yourself.
Here in Milford Haven we are fortunate to have an excellent fishmonger right on the quayside - no one knows fish better than The Fish Plaice. They are open Monday to Friday, 9am to 1pm and can be contacted on 01646 692331.
We are also home to Welsh Lobster Co, Wales’ leading live shellfish distributor. They offer a variety of live shellfish including lobsters, brown crabs, spider crabs (Welsh king crab), whelks and wild Welsh mussels, and are open to the public 6 days per week.
The fresher the fish, the better the taste!
That’s why we recommend you finding out when fish and shellfish are freshest locally by checking our catch calendar before you buy. For great fresh fish, ask at your local fishmonger or supermarket. And remember to ask for Welsh fish – it’s amongst the best in the world and helps to ensure that the journey to your plate is as short as possible.
Fish is a healthy option with plenty of nutrients and it's not as expensive as you might think. There are many varieties to choose between with a wide range of flavours and textures - so there's something for everyone.
To get really fresh fish and great prices we recommend seeking out your local fishmonger. As well as recommending a particular type of fish (some are more readily available than others depending on the season), they can also prepare the fish for use. And remember to ask for Welsh fish - it's amongst the best in the world.
With the help of our local fishmonger The Fish Plaice who sell locally landed fish from their shop at Milford Fish Docks, we've put together some simple recipes to get you started.
Our All About the Fish range of fish recipes has been created to suit all budgets and focuses on one fish to explain their type of flesh and flavours.
Milford Haven became home to a thriving and important fishing port in the 19th Century. On 27th September 1888, the steam trawler ‘Sybil’ was the first vessel to enter Milford Docks.
Trawler owners from ports all around the British coast were quick to spot the advantages of fishing from Milford Haven, the most important of which were: proximity to good fishing grounds, a sheltered anchorage, and direct rail links to London and other centres where the fish could be marketed.
Throughout the first half of the 20th Century, Milford residents boasted that each weekday was a pay-day, as the fishermen were noted for spending their hard earned income. Even through the years of the Great Depression of the 1920s and 30s Milford sustained its busy and bustling quayside atmosphere.
Today, Milford Haven is home to the largest fishing port in Wales.
To find out more about Milford Haven’s fascinating history and its role in the fishing, whaling and oil industries, visit Milford Haven Museum.
The Lowestoft registered steam trawler 'Sybil' was the first fishing vessel to enter the newly opened dock on 27th September
Cardiff Pure Ice and Cold Storage opens the first ice factory in the port
First smoke house is opened
On 2nd September, 29 trawlers land fish for Monday market, largest ever Monday landing at the port
24 Belgian trawlers and 700 Belgian civilians arrive in the port, evacuees from war torn Belgium
Circa 1925 an iconic poster was designed by the Great Western Railway which advertised Milford Haven as 'where fish comes from'; reinforcing the significance of Milford Haven as a fishing port
Spanish Pareja fleet starts to land catches at the port
Milford Haven Ice Co. acquires ice making factory from Brand and Curzon
24 Dutch trawlers arrive at port to form mine-sweeping squadron
Fleet returns from Naval service
Unique electronic Fish Auction facility introduced
Record tonnages landed at Milford Fish Docks - the highest in 10 years
Record tonnages landed at Milford Fish Docks - the highest in 15 years
New flake ice plant installed at Milford Fish Docks - the only one in Wales
New box washing facility, chill store, storage units and processing units opened
Celebrating 130th anniversary
Make Fish Your Dish
The cafes and restaurants at Milford Waterfront offer some delicious fish dishes, with many using local produce. So next time you visit, why not make fish your dish?