Welsh Family History Archive
Images of Wales
St Mary's Well Bay
Photography by John Ball - 22 September 1999
(with Agfa ePhoto307 digital camera)
I recently spent a pleasant few days staying in a friend's caravan at St Mary's Well Bay overlooking the Bristol Channel. The bay is a haven of peace, only six miles from the bustle and noise of the City of Cardiff.
At the eastern end of the bay is Lavernock Point. It was here, in 1897, that the first wireless telegraph message was successfully received from Marconi's transmitter 2½ miles away on the island of Flat Holm. The historic message consisted of the three words: "Are you ready?".
Left: St Mary's Well Bay and Lavernock Point.
Above: The view from the caravan, looking out across the Bristol Channel. A ship
is passing by on its way to the open sea and the Atlantic Ocean. Beyond, the white-
painted lighthouse on the island of Flat Holm is just visible. In the distance are the
Mendip Hills in the English county of Somerset.
Above: To the southwest, Sully Island can be seen, partly hidden by the trees.
Above: The rocky shoreline near St Mary's Well Bay. The beach is wild and largely
inaccessible, with patches of sand between rocks and pebbles
Above: To the south is the island of Flat Holm (left) in the Bristol Channel, while to
the southwest is Sully Island (right), connected to the mainland at low tide by a
Above: A cluster of buildings on the shore at Swanbridge, and to the left, the
causeway which links with Sully Island.
Above: A deserted house in a beautiful setting only 25 metres from the shore. Any offers?
Above: The islands of Flat Holm on the left, and Steep Holm on the right.