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Historic Background
Apart from a very narrow strip of land comprising sea cliffs and cliff top, this historic landscape character area is entirely taken up by an oil refinery and a small industrial estate. Prior to construction of the oil refinery this was an agricultural landscape, almost entirely lying within Llanstadwell parish. It occupied the medieval manor of Waterston, which was a ‘mesne’ lordship of the Lordship of Haverford. On the tithe map of 1849 a very distinct landscape of enclosed strip fields surrounded Waterston village, including the area to the south of the village now occupied by the refinery. These strip fields were clearly the enclosed remnants of the open fields of Waterston manor and township. Later maps show the strip fields, but during the later 19th century and the 20th century some had been merged into larger, squarer enclosures. Elsewhere the pre refinery landscape comprised regularly-shaped fields associated with Newton Farm – labelled Newton Demesne on the tithe map. These fields and farm no longer exist. Construction began on the Gulf refinery in 1966, and the first tanker unloaded crude oil in 1968.

Base map reproduced from the OS map with the permission of Ordnance Survey on behalf of The Controller of Her Majesty's Stationery Office, Crown Copyright 2001.
All rights reserved. Unauthorised reproduction infringes Crown Copyright and may lead to prosecution or civil proceedings. Licence Number: GD272221


Description and essential historic landscape components
This historic landscape area comprises a late 20th century oil refinery. It includes all the installations, including jetties for the unloading of crude oil and a mainline railway. Also included in this area is a small industrial estate. A short section of sea cliff and cliff top between the refinery and the sea is the only component of the landscape not built upon.

This is a very distinct area with clear boundaries. It stands in sharp contrast to the surrounding farms and villages.

Sources: McKay 1993; Llanstadwell Parish Tithe Map, 1849; Ordnance Survey 6” to 1 mile 1st Ed. XXXIII, XXXIX, 1874; Richards 1969