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This week Deceased Online launches its Pembrokeshire Collection, covering around 86,000 records, dating back to 1869. The Collection is launched in partnership with the local County Council, Cyngor Sir Penfro.
The beautiful Pembrokeshire coastline (Richard Gray)
Deceased Online's Pembrokeshire Collection features transcriptions of records from cemeteries in the area around Narberth, Pembroke and Pembroke Dock.

Pembrokeshire County County Council, or Cyngor Sir Penfro, is one of 22 Principal Areas in Wales.  
The county is very popular as a holiday and water sports destination and I enjoyed a family break there recently, taking time out from cycling and swimming near Narberth to visit the beaches and architecture of historic Tenby. Pembrokeshire is rightly celebrated for its spectacular coastline. Consequently, the county has a strong maritime and fishing heritage, as well as a history of farming and agricultural labour.  

The Collection includes 11 cemeteries and burial grounds managed by Cyngor Sir Penfro:
·      Parc Gwyn Crematorium (from 1968)

·      Llanion Cemetery, Pembroke Dock (from 1869)

·      City Road Cemetery, Haverfordwest (from 1926)

·      Llanwnda Cemetery, Goodwick, Fishguard (from 1906)

·      St Michael's Cemetery, Pembroke (from 1895)

·      Monkton Cemetery, Pembroke (from 1895)

·      Freystrop Cemetery (near Haverfordwest) (from 1938)

·      St Ishmael's Cemetery (near Dale) (from 1957)

·      Llangwm Cemetery (from 1938)

·      Nolton Cemetery, Nolton Haven (from 1954)

·      Llanfair Nan-ty-gof Cemetery, Trecwn (from 1966)

·      Rosemarket Cemetery (from 2004)

The records comprise digital scans of around 56,000 individual cremation records as well as transcripts and grave details for 30,000 burials. You can also use the database to locate cremation section and grave maps. The transcript register details include the full name of the deceased, age, gender, date of death and the date of burial.

Screenshot showing the burial register details from  Llanion Cemetery for 70 year old William Jones, 8 December 1874
If, like me, you have Welsh ancestors you will know how useful burial and cremation records can be in identifying those with common surnames. Most of my Welsh ancestors were called JONES, which proves very tricky to research! Use burial records to double-check residence, age and names of informant. Once you have identified the correct relative, you should have enough details to find him or her in the GRO death indices and order a birth certificate. This is a far easier method that trying guess which is your David Jones from the death indices alone. 

The details taken from the gravestone inscriptions at Blaenffos Baptist Chapel Burial Ground, Narberth (shown above) in The National Archives collection can give details of employment, such as in these examples of ships' stokers. A note to the right reveals that although these inscriptions were recorded in Wales, Leading Stoker I. Bowen RN was buried in Hong Kong.

Some interesting individuals recorded in the collection are the broadcaster, Lewis John Wynford Vaughan-Thomas (1908-1987); Prince Gregory Borisovich Gagarin (1908-1993); and opera singer, Valetta Iacopi (married name Hill).

Crocuses in the grounds of Parc Gwyn Crematorium (Jamies Burges-Lumsden)
Standing Cross at Parc Gwyn Crematorium (Jamie Burges-Lumsden)

You can find other burial records areas in Wales on Deceased Online, including those of burial removals in The National Archives collection mentioned above. These records, which date back to 1774, comprise original digital scans of transcripts for thousands of headstones and memorials removed from cemeteries and burial grounds which were closed.  The areas in Wales included are:
  • Angelsey
  • Clywd
  • Dyfed
  • Gwent
  • Mid Glamorgan
  • Powys
  • South Glamorgan
  • West Glamorgan
Do you have Pembrokeshire ancestors? And have you found any in our latest collection? We love to hear about the people you find and to learn about their lives and personalities. Please share with us in the Comments Box below or on our Twitter or Facebook page. My Welsh ancestors are from the old counties of Montgomeryshire, Merionethshire and Radnorshire. Happily, Deceased Online will be adding other areas in Wales will be added in the near future.


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