The history of Goodwick’s Fishguard Bay Hotel

If you walk around Goodwick you will probably spot a prominent disused building on Quay Street.

The building is that of the former Fishguard Arms Hotel which now stands empty after decades as a hotel. We return here to the history of the building.

The building began life as a mansion in the 1700s named the Wyndcliffe, which was leased by the Rogers family. In 1805 it was sold to David Harries and remained in his family until 1894 when it was sold to the Fishguard and Rosslare Harbor Company. During this time, it had been transformed into a hotel.

Wyncliffe Hotel is converted into the Fishguard Bay Hotel in the 1900s. Image: Deborah Tilley via Our Pembrokeshire Memories

In 1900 planning permission was granted to the Fishguard and Rosslare Harbor Company to build the Fishguard Arms Hotel after the company purchased the Wyncliffe Hotel and seven acres of land for £4,500.

When the hotel was built it had 40 rooms, tennis courts and tropical gardens and each of the rooms had a telephone. In 1910, it also included two suites-apartments, a dining room, a smoking room, two lounges and a billiard room.

Western Telegraph: Fishguard Bay Hotel in 1940. Photo: Andrew Harries via Our Pembrokeshire MemoriesFishguard Bay Hotel in 1940. Photo: Andrew Harries via Our Pembrokeshire Memories

It was then owned by Great Western Railways. The company closed the hotel in 1951 and was leased by Mrs Burscough in 1959 as a men’s hostel building the Milford Haven Oil Refinery until it reopened as a hotel in 1967. It was refurbished in 1974 when was taken over by the Schell family.

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In 2015, the hotel’s owners began sharing its large collection of photos showing the history of the surrounding area. The photos – more than 500 – were donated to the exhibition by customers and residents.

Western Telegraph: Fishguard Bay Hotel in 1979. Photo: Stephen Hughes via Our Pembrokeshire MemoriesFishguard Bay Hotel in 1979. Photo: Stephen Hughes via Our Pembrokeshire Memories

Northern Powerhouse Development Ltd bought the 60-bedroom hotel from the Schell family, who owned it for 58 years, for £966,720, in July 2017.

The hotel went into administration in August 2019 after a Northern Powerhouse investigation and has been empty since. A fire in the park in June 2020 that was being investigated as arson.

The Fishguard Bay Hotel is a Grade II listed building as it retains most of the structure of an ‘extensive terrace and woodland Edwardian garden’ which is laid out to complement the Great Western Railways Hotel.

Western Telegraph: Fishguard Bay Hotel in April 2022. Photo: Mark Lewis via Our Pembrokeshire MemoriesFishguard Bay Hotel in April 2022. Photo: Mark Lewis via Our Pembrokeshire Memories

Some specimen trees and shrubs are said to remain from the Edwardian plantation, including exotic and tender species.

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