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Pwllheli ( ) is a community and the main market town of the Llŷn Peninsula in Gwyneddmarker, north-western Walesmarker. It has a large Welsh-speaking population (81% in 2001). Pwllheli is the place where Plaid Cymru was founded. It is the birthplace of Albert Evans-Jones - Cynan - the Welsh poet.


The town's name means saltwater basin. The pronunciation of Pwllheli includes a sound not found in the English language, the voiceless alveolar lateral fricative .

The town was given its charter as a borough by Edward, the Black Prince in 1355, and a market is still held each Wednesday in the centre of the town on the 'Maes' (=field in English).

The town grew around the shipbuilding and fishing industries, and the granite quarry at Carreg yr Imbillmarker.

Pwllheli Railway Station
During the 1890s, the town was developed by Solomon Andrews, a Cardiffmarker businessman. This work included the Promenade, roads and houses at West End. A tramwaymarker was built linking the town to Llanbedrogmarker. The trams ran until 1927 when a section of track was seriously damaged by a storm.

For many years a holiday camp run by Butlins was operated a couple of miles from Pwllheli, this is was redeveloped, and is now ran by the Haven group and renamed 'Hafan-Y-Mor'.

The town contains numerous retail shops, including Euronics and many smaller shops. It also had a Woolworths until that chain's demise. Supermarkets include Somerfield, SPAR, the Co-op supermarket, Iceland and Asda. A new Lidl store opened very recently.


Ysgol Glan y Môr was formed by the merger of the former Pwllheli Grammar school and the Frondeg Secondary Modern Schools. These occupied sites at Penrallt and Upper Ala Road, respectively. The two schools merged in mid-1969 to form a comprehensive school based at two separated sites within the town.

The junior pupils (year 1 and year 2) were located at the Penrallt site (former grammar school site) and the senior pupils (year 3 and upwards) were located at a new complex constructed at Cardiff Road. This new school was subsequently expanded to accommodate all pupils under the Ysgol Glan y Môr name.

The Penrallt site was later redeveloped to form the Pwllheli campus of Coleg Meirion-Dwyfor. The facade of the main building of the old grammar school was retained and incorporated into the design of the current college buildings. Thus the 'old school' is readily seen from the town square (Y Maes) in much the same way as it has been since the former Pwllheli County School moved to Penrallt in the early 20th century.



Pwllheli railway stationmarker is the terminus of the Cambrian Coast Railway running to Dovey Junctionmarker near Machynllethmarker.




Pwllheli hosted the National Eisteddfod in 1925 and 1955, as well as an unofficial National Eisteddfod event in 1875.


According to the United Kingdom Census 2001, 80% of the population speak Welsh, with the highest percentage of Welsh speakers in the 10-14 age bracket, 94%.

Sport and leisure

Pwllheli is home to association football team Pwllheli F.C. and rugby union team Pwllheli RFC.


  1. Gwynedd website
  2. walesonline news

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