President Jane was delighted to welcome Lynne Houlston, a National Park warden from Castlemartin, to speak to Narberth Ladies Probus Club.

Lynne was involved in a unique project funded by the Defence Infrastructure Organisation’s Conservation Stewardship Fund. The ‘Reflections from Castlemartin, 1939’ video is the culmination of a mission to recognise the 80th anniversary of the creation of the Castlemartin Range by capturing stories from the people who experienced this important chapter in the area’s past.

The military took over the area known as Castlemartin Range in 1939, prior to which it had been tenanted farmland on the extensive Cawdor Estate owned by Earl Cawdor of Aberdeenshire. Interviews, photographs and articles have been combined to retell the history and preserve it for future generations in a series of videos to tell the story of those who lived and worked in the area around this time.

The film captured both the sadness and the many memories of those with first-hand experience of losing their homes and livelihoods when they were dispossessed by the Ministry of Defence. Sadly, some of those interviewed are no longer alive. All agreed it had been a moving tribute to the lives of the tenant farmers on the Cawdor estate in the 1930s.

After viewing the film there was time for questions from club members. President Jane thanked Lynne for sharing the video with Narberth Ladies Probus Club and hoped that she would return to give another talk about the fascinating flora and wild life on the Castlemartin range. 

The club meets on the first Friday of every month at Plas Hyfryd Hotel – new members are always welcome. Contact secretary Lindsay on 01834 845681 for more details.