Haroldston St Issells


"HARROLDSTON (ST. ISSELS), or EAST HARROLDSTON, a parish in the hundred of RHÔS, county of PEMBROKE, SOUTH WALES, 1 1/2mile (S.E. by S.) from Haverfordwest, containing 304 inhabitants. This parish, which is pleasantly situated on the bank of the western Cleddau, appears to have derived its name from Harold,the founder of an ancient family of distinction, that for several generations occupied an old seat here, which, by marriage with Alice, daughter and sole heiress of Sir Richard Harold, passed to the family of Perrot, ancestors of Sir John Perrot, Lord Deputy of Ireland in the reign of Elizabeth, and first high sheriffof this county, who was a native of this place: the ancient mansion is now in a very dilapidated condition. Fern Hill, the seat of Sir Henry Matthias, Knt., is pleasantly situated on the bank of the river Cleddau, and surrounded by thriving plantations. The living is a perpetual curacy, in the archdeaconry and diocese of St. David's, endowed with £800 royal bounty, and £400 parliamentary grant, and in the patronage of James Higgon, Esq. The church is dedicated to St. Ishmael. There is a place of worship for Wesleyan Methodists. The hermitage of St. Caradoc, it is said, was in this parish; and on the common within the limits of which the Haverfordwest races are held is a well, still called St. Caradoc's Well, round which, till within the last few years, a pleasure fair, or festival, was annually held, for the celebration of rustic sports. The average annual expenditure for the support of the poor is £50. 14." [From A Topographical Dictionary of Wales (S. Lewis, 1833).]



The 1851 census for this parish has been indexed by Dyfed Family History Society.

Census Returns for this parish have the following LDS Call Numbers:

  • 1841 Census - 0464345
  • 1851 Census - 0104236
  • 1861 Census - 0543244
  • 1871 Census - 0850856
  • 1881 Census - 1342305
  • 1891 Census - 6099646

Church History

Some church and chapel data from The Religious census of 1851 : A Calendar of the returns relating to Wales, Vol 1, South Wales. Ed. by I.G Jones, & D. Williams. UWP, Cardiff, 1976. The names are those of the informants

  • Haroldston St Issels Parish Church "The Church is inconveniently situated about a mile and a half from the place where the bulk of the Parishioners reside........" D W Adams, Minister, Hill Strett, Haverfordwest
  • Wesleyan Chapel WM Erected in 1829 John Morgan, Minister, Court House, Haverfordwest with a duplicate return submitted by John Elliott, Local Preacher, Merlin's Bridge
  • Salem Ind Erected in 1837 Nathaniel Harries, Minister, Merlin's Bridge

Parish entry for Freystrop with Haroldston St Issell from The Welsh Church Year Book, 1929 (Cd by Archive CD Books).

  • Parish Church & St Issell (Haroldston St Issell)
  • Incumbent and Curates; W Williams
  • Rural Deanery of Roose
  • Acreage 1,620 & 1,104; Population 338 & 248

    Church Records

    PR CMB (1765-[1812?]) recorded in 1933 apparently lost

    Parish registers: Christenings (1813-1990), Marriages (1814-1969), Burials (1813-98) at Pem.RO

    Bishops' Transcripts, covering the period (1798-1802, 1807, 1809-57, 1859-70) are at the National Library of Wales, and have been microfilmed by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints - Call Number: 0105142

    See Bap/Mar/Bur data on FreeReg

    Nonconformist Chapels:

    • Chapel, in Merlin's Bridge [Wesleyan Methodists, 1829]. Records ; Haverfordwest and Milford Haven Circuit ; baptismal registers 1842-1934, circuit schedule and plans, quarterly minutes, accounts, 1889-1980 at Pem RO [DFC/M/9] SM9478114474 Built 1829 Still open 2000 Coflein On Dyfed FHS
    • Emmanuel Christian Centre, Pembroke Rd, Merlin's Bridge SM950137 Built c.1910 Still open 1993 Coflein

    Description & Travel

    You can see pictures of Haroldston St Issells which are provided by:



    The transcription of the section for Haroldston St Issels from The National Gazetteer (1868) provided by Colin Hinson.



    Brown, J., Phillips, J.W., and Warren. F.J. The history of Haverfordwest with that of some Pembrokeshire parishes, Haverfordwest, L. Brigstocke (1914) pp.170-176.

    Land & Property

    Details of extant records on Archives Network Wales for the following;

    • Jenkins family, of Merlin's Bridge, papers 1764-1974 "The Jenkins family owned property in around Merlin's Bridge, Pembrokeshire, as well as Northumberland Farm, Wiston, Pembrokeshire. S. Jenkins and Sons were general smiths, engineers and hauling and threshing machine makers. The family also owned Millbrook Granite Quarry, at Treffgarne, Pembrokeshire, and the Merlin's Bridge Sanitary Steam Laundry Co. Ltd. ...................."

    Turvey, Roger. Under the Hammer:Selling Haroldston, the sale of the mansion house and estate, 1857 (NLW's site) Pemb Historian XIV



    Parish map (Kain/Oliver)

    You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SM958138 (Lat/Lon: 51.78531, -4.961528), Haroldston St Issells which are provided by:


    Names, Geographical

    Places, villages, farms etc within Haroldston St Issels parish as shown on the online parish map from the CD of Historic Parishes of England and Wales: an Electronic Map of Boundaries before 1850 with a Gazetteer and Metadata [computer file]. (Kain, R.J.P., Oliver, R.R.). (Extracted by Barry Johnson)

    • Haroldston St Issels (89); Avallenau, Black Hill, Derby, Fern Hill, Haroldstone (Ancient monument), Haroldstone St Issels, Haylet, Merlin's Bridge,Woodbine