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Borth - 2008-03-01.jpg
Borth with Cors Fochno, the River Dyfi estuary and Aberdyfi in the background
Borth is located in Ceredigion
Location within Ceredigion
Population1,399 (2011).[1]
OS grid referenceSN608894
Principal area
Ceremonial county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Post townBorth
Postcode districtSY24
FireMid and West Wales
UK Parliament
List of places
52°29′07″N 4°03′04″W / 52.48533°N 4.05103°W / 52.48533; -4.05103Coordinates: 52°29′07″N 4°03′04″W / 52.48533°N 4.05103°W / 52.48533; -4.05103

Borth (Welsh: Y Borth), is a village and seaside resort in Ceredigion, Mid Wales, 7 miles (11 km) north of Aberystwyth on the Ceredigion Coast Path. The community includes the settlement of Ynyslas. The population was 1,399 in 2011. From being largely Welsh-speaking, the village has become anglicised: over 54 per cent of its residents were born in England.[2] According to both the 1991 and 2001 censuses, 43 per cent of the residents of Borth were primarily Welsh-speakers.

Features and history[edit]

Borth's sandy beach has helped to promote it as a seaside resort. There is a youth hostel in the village, and caravan and camping sites nearby.

Petrified tree stump at Borth; 2021

There is an ancient submerged forest visible at low tide along the beach, where stumps of oak, pine, birch, willow and hazel (preserved by the acid anaerobic conditions in the peat) can be seen. Radiocarbon dating suggests the trees date from about 1500 BCE.[3] This submerged forest[4] also ties in with the legend of Cantre'r Gwaelod.[5][6] The stumps were exposed for a time by Storm Hannah in 2019.[7]

Cors Fochno, a raised peat mire, part of the Dyfi Biosphere,[8] is the only UNESCO Biosphere reserve in Wales. It is located next to the village, together with the Dyfi National Nature Reserve and visitors' centre at Ynyslas.[citation needed] The village is crossed by a long-distance footpath, the Dyfi Valley Way.

On 4 April 1876, the entire Uppingham School in Rutland, England, consisting of 300 boys, 30 masters and their families, moved to Borth for a period of 14 months, taking over the disused Cambrian Hotel and a large number of boarding houses, to avoid a typhoid epidemic.[9]

Amenities and functions[edit]

Borth railway station is served by the Cambrian Line. The station building houses Borth Station Museum, which displays community and railway historical artifacts and temporary exhibitions.[10] The museum is run by volunteers. Borth is also the location of the Borth Animalarium and the Borth and Ynyslas Golf Club, which was used for many of the scenes in TV series Hinterland.

The Borth inshore lifeboat (ILB) station was established in 1966 at the southern end of the beach.

The village war memorial above a cliff south of the beach, was struck by lightning on 21 March 1983 and had to be rebuilt.[11]

In 2008 and 2009 Borth hosted The Square Festival.[citation needed]

In 2011 work commenced on the first phase of a £12-million coastal protection scheme along the Borth to Ynyslas coastline,[12] which was finished in 2015. The work was funded by the Welsh Assembly and the EU.[13] An unexpected consequence of the coastal defence work was to reveal the remains of the petrified forest mentioned earlier.

In 2018 Borth was subjected to a media furore over the escape of a wild lynx from its local zoo.

In 2019 Borth hosted a community street production, "Borth Begins".[14]

The village football team, Borth United, resumed playing in the Cambrian Tyres 1st Division in the 2021–22 season.[15]


An electoral ward named Borth stretches south-east to Geneu'r Glyn. Its total population at the 2011 Census was 2,078.[16] Borth is also the name of a ward in the current Ceredigion County Council, covering the communities of Borth and Llandre.

Local government history[edit]

Borth had a representative on Cardiganshire County Council from its formation in 1889. The first councillor elected was Rev. Enoch Watkin James, Brynderwen, a Liberal candidate and Calvinistic Methodist minister. After his election in January 1889, according to a local newspaper, "flags were generally displayed and after nightfall bonfires lighted, fireworks discharged, houses illuminated and hundreds of people paraded the streets up to a late hour. About six o'clock, the rev. gentlemen and friends were drawn in an open carriage through the village and, addressing the assembly, said that the day was rapidly approaching when laws would be made by the people for the people."[17]

Borth was represented on Ceredigion District Council by Tom Raw-Rees, from the 1970s until his death in 2001. He latterly sat also for Borth on Ceredigion County Council. Before 1996, the Borth ward for elections to Dyfed County Council covered Borth, Ceulanamaesmawr and Tirymynach.[18]

In popular culture[edit]

  • The 1976 award-winning children's fantasy novel A String in the Harp, by the American author Nancy Bond, is set in Borth and the surrounding countryside.[19]
  • Borth, Borth bog, and the Borth railway station form the backdrop to the main storyline in Season 1, Episode 4 ("The Girl in the Water") of Y Gwyll (Hinterland in English), transmitted on S4C in 2013 and BBC1 Wales in January 2014.

Notable residents[edit]

Image gallery[edit]


  1. ^ "Community population 2011". Retrieved 10 May 2015.
  2. ^ UK Census (2011). "Local Area Report – Borth Parish (W04000362)". Nomis. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 25 August 2020.
  3. ^ "BBC NEWS – UK – Wales – Mid – Experts look for 'watery kingdom'". 25 May 2006. Retrieved 10 January 2015.
  4. ^ BBC Programme clip about the Submerged Forest
  5. ^ "Coast – Submerged Forest". BBC. Retrieved 6 March 2008.
  6. ^ Video BBC Video: Programme clip about Cantre'r Gwaelod
  7. ^ "Storm Hannah uncovers Borth 'sunken' underwater forest". BBC News. 25 May 2019. Retrieved 25 May 2019.
  8. ^ "Hafan". Retrieved 10 January 2015.
  9. ^ Uppingham by the Sea, a Narrative of the Year at Borth, Author: John Henry Skrine, Release Date 22 March 2006 from Project Gutenberg.
  10. ^ "Borth Station Museum". Borth Station Museum. Retrieved 6 July 2018.
  11. ^ "BBC – Domesday Reloaded: The War Memorial, Borth, from 1986". domesday. Retrieved 10 January 2015.
  12. ^ "Borth Coastal Defence – Written by Ceredigion County Council". 12 October 2010. Retrieved 21 March 2011.
  13. ^ Borth Coastal Protection Scheme.
  14. ^ Borth Begins.
  15. ^ Retrieved 9 September 2021. {{cite web}}: Missing or empty |title= (help)
  16. ^ "Ward population 2011". Retrieved 10 May 2015.
  17. ^ "Cardiganshire County Council". Cambrian News. 25 January 1889. Retrieved 4 December 2013.
  18. ^ The County of Dyfed (Electoral Arrangements) Order 1988. Statutory Instruments. 1988. Retrieved 26 November 2018.
  19. ^ Nancy Bond, A String in the Harp, Atheneum, 1976.