Pembroke Dockyard
Pembroke Dock, Pembrokeshire, Wales
The former Dockyard viewed from the Defensible Barracks
Coordinates51°41′43″N 4°57′17″W / 51.6952°N 4.9548°W / 51.6952; -4.9548
Site history
Built1814 (1814)
FateClosed 1926

Pembroke Dockyard, originally called Pater Yard, is a former Royal Navy Dockyard in Pembroke Dock, Pembrokeshire, Wales.


See also: Pembroke Dock § Naval dockyards

It was founded in 1814, although not formally authorized until the Prince Regent signed the necessary Order in Council on 31 October 1815, and was known as Pater Yard until 1817. The Mayor of Pembroke had requested the change "in deference to the town of Pembroke some two miles (3.2 km) distant".[1]

The site selected for the dockyard was greenfield land and the closest accommodations were in Pembroke. Office space was provided by the old frigate Lapwing after she was beached. The Royal Marine garrison was housed in the hulked 74-gun ship, HMS Dragon, after she was run aground in 1832. Many of the workmen commuted by boat from nearby communities until Pembroke Dock town was built up.[2] In 1860 the dockyard's policing was transferred to the new No. 4 Division of the Metropolitan Police, which remained in that role until the 1920s.[3]

After the end of the First World War, the dockyard was closed by the cash-strapped Admiralty as redundant in 1926. The Royal Air Force, however, built RAF Pembroke Dock on the site during the 1930s to house its flying boats, demolishing many of the existing buildings to make room for the necessary hangars and other facilities.[4]

Administration of the dockyard

The admiral-superintendent[5] was the Royal Navy officer in command of a larger Naval Dockyard. Portsmouth, Devonport and Chatham all had admiral-superintendents, as did some other dockyards in the United Kingdom and abroad at certain times. The admiral-superintendent usually held the rank of rear-admiral. His deputy was the captain of the dockyard (or captain of the port from 1969).

Some smaller dockyards, such as Sheerness and Pembroke,[6] had a captain-superintendent [7] instead, whose deputy was styled commander of the dockyard. The appointment of a commodore-superintendent [8] was also made from time to time in certain yards.

The appointment of admiral-superintendents (or their junior equivalents) dates from 1832 when the Admiralty took charge of the Royal Dockyards. Prior to this larger dockyards were overseen by a commissioner who represented the Navy Board.

Resident Commissioner of the Navy, Pater Yard (1830–1832)


Captain-Superintendent, Pembroke Dockyard (1857–1906)


Rear-Admiral Superintendent, Pembroke Dockyard (1906–1915)

Captain-Superintendent, Pembroke Dockyard (1915–1926)

Gallery of listed buildings on the site


  1. ^ Phillips, pp. 12–16
  2. ^ Phillips, pp. 17–20, 40
  3. ^ "British Police History - Royal Marine Police".
  4. ^ Phillips, pp. 46–48
  5. ^ "Royal Naval dockyard staff". The National Archives, UK, 2016. Retrieved 19 December 2017.
  6. ^ Carradice, Phil (2013). The Ships of Pembroke Dockyard. Stroud, Gloucs.: Amberley.
  7. ^ "Royal Naval dockyard staff". The National Archives, UK, 2016. Retrieved 19 December 2017.
  8. ^ Stewart, William (2009). Admirals of the World: A Biographical Dictionary, 1500 to the Present. Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland. p. 47. ISBN 9780786438099.
  9. ^ Harrison, Simon (2010–2018). "Resident Commissioner at Pater Yard". S. Harrison. Retrieved 2 March 2019.
  10. ^ Mackie, Colin. "Royal Navy Appointments from 1865" (PDF). Colin Mackie, p.116, December 2017. Retrieved 19 December 2017.
  11. ^ Listed building entry (Min Gate)
  12. ^ Listed building entry (Capt Supt House)
  13. ^ Listed building entry (1 The Terrace)
  14. ^ Listed building entry (No.2)
  15. ^ Listed building entry (No.3)
  16. ^ Listed building entry (No.4)
  17. ^ Listed building entry (No.5)
  18. ^ Listed building entry (Office & Surgery)
  19. ^ Listed building entry (Guard House)
  20. ^ Listed building entry (Dockyard Offices)
  21. ^ Listed building entry (Storehouse)
  22. ^ Listed building entry (Chapel)