Conwy Morfa

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View of Conwy Morfa from Penmaen-bach, with Afon Conwy, Deganwy and the Creuddyn peninsula

The Conwy Morfa (Welsh: Morfa Conwy) is a piece of originally marshy-sand based spit, north of the western end of the modern A55 entrance to Conwy in Conwy county borough, north-west Wales.

Known locally as "The Morfa" (Welsh, Y Morfa), it shapes the south side of the estuary of the River Conwy. Today a large sandy bay, which at low tide forms part of the extensive sandy beaches and mussel banks of Conwy Bay, Conwy Morfa has many developments on its land, including:

  • A beach - a large sandy bay, which also provides excellent fishing [1]
  • The Golf Club - possibly the place the first place people played golf in Wales
  • A marina - Conwy Quays, developed by Crest Nicholson, managed by a third party
  • An industrial estate - on the south-side of the A55 road

Golf Course[edit]

In 1869, three Scots laid out a few holes on Conwy Morfa - they may have been the first to play golf on Welsh soil. In 1875 members from The Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake realised the potential of the Conwy Morfa, and had a 12-hole course professionally laid out. On 30 June 1890 The Caernarvonshire (Conwy) Golf Club was formed, and on 30 July the Club's first Captain, Mr. Sydney Platt opened the club house - a donated military mess hut from the local army base. In 1895, the club became one of the founding members of the Welsh Golfing Union, and after extending the course to eighteen holes staged the first Welsh National Championship.

Today it is a typical links course, with an abundance of gorse and wind adding to the challenge. Douglas Adams the golfing painter created three of his most famous paintings on the Conwy Morfa: 'A Difficult Bunker, 'The Putting Green' and 'The Drive'. These are on display in the present club house, completed in 1996, the fifth since 1875.

Mulberry Harbour[edit]

During World War II, the Allies realized that if they were at some point to invade Northern Europe, and oust the Nazis, then harbours would be essential. They could not assume access to or the operation of the existing facilities, and they needed something quick and easy to assemble under enemy fire and that would survive the Atlantic storms. There is a debate as to who came up with the design for the Mulberry Harbour, but what is known is that a North Walian civil engineer Hugh Iorys Hughes was given the task of proving one of the competing designs - the one he had most input to. The prototypes were constructed at the Morfa, with the area transformed into a huge construction site and over 1000 labourers were drafted in. These included Oleg Kerensky, son of former Russian Prime Minister Alexander Kerensky, who supervised the construction process. Hughes constructed three 'Hippo' caissons were towed from the Morfa to the test site Rigg Bay, Solway Firth near Garlieston, Scotland. When full production started, the main location was on a site behind what is now the second green, before being launched into the River Conwy estuary for their journey south and ultimately to play a key role in the D-Day landings [2]


Llandudno Junction football club had been resident at Conwy Morfa for some time, but with falling attendances and high costs due to the Entertainment tax, by the 1953-4 season they and local rivals Conwy Borough occupied the bottom two places in the Welsh League (North) - a complete reverse of the previous season! An agreement was struck, and Borough United were created who left the Morfa and played for 15-seasons at Nant-y-Coed, Llandudno Junction where they wore the maroon and white colours of Llandudno Junction. In the 1962-3 season, they won the Welsh Cup, beating League opposition in Newport County F.C. 2-1 - although they made a £73 loss. They thus entered the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup, beating Maltese opposition in the first round, but lost out to Czech cup-winners Slovan Bratislava 4-0. In 1967, Nant-y-Coed’s owners, the Irish Oblates of Mary Immaculate order, evicted the club. They could not move or merge with various other local clubs, and rejected a return to the available Morfa site which lacked facilities other than the pitch itself. Resigning from the Welsh League, they survived two more seasons as nomads before folding in 1969 [3]

Rugby Club[edit]

In 1952, John Kidson arrived from Liverpool to work in Conwy, and was amazed that a Welsh town didn't have a Rugby Club. He formed the Llandudno Rugby Club, played all its inaugural season matches as away games. In 1953 the Conwy Football Club abandoned the Morfa sports ground, and the rugby club were established on the Morfa for the 1953-4 season. The town introduced rugby to the John Bright Grammar School, and the links between club and school are remembered by the Annual Boxing Day game between the Old Boys and the club. In 1957 a fire destroyed the dressing rooms at the Morfa ground, and the club departed to a new ground in Llandudno [4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Good Beach Guide search results
  2. ^ Combinedops Mulberry Harbours
  3. ^ Up to the minute news on the Welsh Football scene
  4. ^ Llandudno Rugby Club North Wales

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 53°17′31″N 3°50′53″W / 53.292°N 3.848°W / 53.292; -3.848