Royal Dockyard celebrated at official book launch


Author Lieutenant-Commander Lawrie Phillips; Lord West; Councillor Jane Phillips, Mayor of Pembroke Dock and Alec Don, chief executive at the Port of Milford HavenThe history of the Royal Dockyard at Pembroke Dock was celebrated last week at the official launch of the highly acclaimed book ‘Pembroke Dockyard and the Old Navy, A Bicentennial History’ by author Lieutenant- Commander Lawrie Phillips.

The Port of Milford Haven hosted the event at the Old Dockyard Chapel as part of Pembroke Dock’s Bicentenary Celebrations. Over seventy people attended the launch, including former First Sea Lord Admiral The Right Honourable Baron West of Spithead GCB DSC PC ADC who has family links with the area.

The Royal Dockyard produced over 250 warships for the Royal Navy, including five royal yachts, between its founding in 1814 and its closure after the First World War. Over the course of a century, huge strides were made in the materials and skills used to construct these ships, from wood to iron and then steel, and from sail to steam, and paddle wheel to screw propulsion.

Lawrie Phillips is a renowned naval historian who was born and raised in Pembroke Dock and has had a lifelong interest in the ships produced in the dockyard, as well as the men who built them. He travelled widely in his thirty-five year long career with the Ministry of Defence and served as Fleet Public Relations Officer, Head of Media Operations at the Permanent Joint HQ, Head of Publicity at the MOD and Director of Public Relations in Hong Kong. He is a former lieutenant commander RNR and lieutenant colonel, Royal Engineers (V).

Port of Milford Haven chief executive Alec Don said he was pleased that Pembroke Dock’s naval history had been recognised during its bicentenary year: “The Royal Dockyard’s heritage is something to be very proud of and Lawrie’s book has captured this fantastically well. Everyone at the Port is looking forward to a full calendar of events to celebrate 200 years of Pembroke Dock”.


Photo caption: (Left to right) Author Lieutenant-Commander Lawrie Phillips; Lord West; Councillor Jane Phillips, Mayor of Pembroke Dock and Alec Don, chief executive at the Port of Milford Haven

Notes to Editors:

Port of Milford Haven
The Port of Milford Haven is responsible for the biggest port in Wales, and is the third largest port in the UK.  Each year it handles around 29% of Britain’s seaborne trade in oil and gas and is widely recognised in the industry as the energy capital of the UK.

The Port, along with the cluster of energy-related businesses along the Waterway, is a key driver of economic activity in Pembrokeshire, attracting inward investment and supporting over 4,000 thousand jobs.

The Port of Milford Haven also owns and operates Pembroke Port and Milford Dock.  Activities such as cargo handling, ferry operations, fish landing and cruise calls as well as a first class marina are spread across these two sites.  One of the most prominent on the West Coast, the Port is in the heart of the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park, the only Coastal National Park in Great Britain. It is marked as a Special Area of Conservation (SAC) and has many areas designated as Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI).

The Port of Milford Haven is a trust port – an independent, commercially run organisation that has statutory responsibilities governed by its Acts, to maintain and improve navigation and the provision of Port and Harbour services and facilities.  Additionally, the Port provides significant financial and in-kind support to a wide variety of local causes.  All profits are retained within the business to fund these objectives. 

For further information, visit or contact:

Anna Malloy
Port of Milford Haven
01646 696100

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