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This page links to a series of in-depth articles on aspects of Swansea’s local history. Each article is a large set of interlinked documents and illustrations. Look on the Features page for shorter articles.

Port Tennant in 1838 as shown on the tithe Map for Swansea parish

Swansea and the Tithe Commutation Act looks at Swansea at the time of one of the most important pieces of nineteenth-century legislation that affected nearly twelve thousand parishes in England and Wales. Tithe documents are some of the best sources for local history that are easily available and easily understood. Often they give us the earliest detailed view of a local area. This article helps to introduce the Tithe and its documents to the reader and shows how they can be used in local history. This is still work in progress and there will be a series of additions to this project throughout the year.


The Tithe is often seen as a good source for general landscape history because of its primary function to act as a land register. The Enclosure Award is another example of early land management although usually from a much earlier date. Swansea is unusual in having its own Enclosure Act which has had a lasting impact on the centre of the modern city. 

If your'e interested in landscape history here's a good reading list to start with.

The individual U-boat histories section lists all the boats that entered the Bristol channel

Information relating to the port is now in the port of Swansea section

The U-boat campaign in the Bristol Channel takes a broader view of Swansea in the Second World War. Swansea was one of the chief ports of the Bristol Channel and played an important part in the import of food and war materials. The German navy used U-boats to attack both the ships and the ports of South Wales. The clandestine nature of this warfare has led to many misunderstandings about the nature of the German U-boat campaigns in the Bristol Channel. Using recently declassified historical material, this research gives the real stories of the U-boats that entered the Bristol Channel.

For its local citizens, Swansea Slip is one of Swansea’s best known landmarks. The Slip has played an important part in local life since it was built. Tourism in Swansea Bay has had a long history. The town was known as 'the Brighton of Wales' in the late 1700s. 

With the completion of the new water treatment works on the east side of the bay a new chapter is about to start in the history of the Slip. However bathing in Swansea Bay has a significant history as this article describes.

The fortunes of the Bay have reflected the local changes in attitude to pollution and waste disposal, and the Bay is poised to be a new destination for local tourists. 


Jack's World is a map of the centre of town in the 1880s. 



The View for Sunday 4 December 2000

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