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Historic Background
This is a relatively small historic landscape character area consisting of salt marsh, tidal mud flats and low-lying land subject to flooding, either side of a small inlet at the mouth of a stream. It lies within Marloes parish. The area belonged to the ½ knight’s fee that was held of the Lordship of Pembroke by the de Vale family, Lords of Dale, from at least 1247, as the Manor of Mullock and Bicton. A tenament known as Crabhall, which extends into the west of the area, was held by the sub-tenant Philip Crabhole in the late 14th century and eventually passed to the Wogans of Boulston. An early 19th century estate map labels this area ‘Pickle Ridge and Cran Marsh’ and shows it as gravel and mud with a road titled ‘summer’s Boat Road’ running up its western side. The map shows an embankment across the mouth of the estuary – an early attempt to drain the area. Later maps show other embankments along the eastern and western side of the watercourse. Part of this area was subjected to gravel quarrying from the 1950s to the 1980s. It may have been within this inlet that Henry Tudor (Henry VII) landed in 1485, on his way to Bosworth Field. By tradition it was under Mullock Bridge, which crosses the inlet towards the middle of the area, that Rhys ap Thomas hid in 1485 to fulfil his promise that Henry Tudor would only get the crown by marching over his body.

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.
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Description and essential historic landscape components
This area lies across the valley floor of a small inlet that is tidal downstream of Mullock Bridge. Here marsh and salt marsh predominates with mud and gravel on the foreshore. Water-filled old gravel pits lie towards the estuary mouth. Marsh lies immediately upstream of the bridge with scrubby woodland further upstream. Old embankments both upstream and downstream of the bridge testify to former attempts to drain the marsh. These embankments are now breached. The Pembrokeshire Coast Path runs across the mouth of this inlet. Apart from the single arched stone-built 18th century or 19th century Mullock Bridge, which is Grade II listed, and a modern bridge alongside it there are no structures in this area. Archaeology consists of reports of burials close to the bridge and a mill site.

This is a well-defined historic landscape area below Mullock Bridge, with the marsh standing in sharp contrast with the surrounding farmland. Further upstream the distinction between this area and its neighbours is blurred, but still present.

Sources: Jones 1996; Ludlow in Crane, forthcoming; Marloes Parish Tithe Map 1843; Ordnance Survey 6” to 1 mile 1st Ed. XXXII, 1887; PRO HDX/80/66; Walker 1950