Wales this Week – Pembroke Dock Oil Tank Blaze

Two men who helped fight the Pembroke Dock oil tank fire are to take part in a special television programme next week:

Former fire-fighter Wyndham Scourfield, from Narberth, and Ted Owens, who ran messages for the fire service in 1941, will describe the fight to extinguish the blaze at Llanreath.


Mr Scourfield is one of the last survivors from the 600-strong team which fought the fire.

The blaze was started by a German air-raid which destroyed the peace of an August afternoon. It was one of the biggest fires of the blitz on Britain by Hitler’s Luftwaffe.


The story features in a special edition of ITV Wales’ ‘Wales This Week’ series which turns the clock back 70 years.


Mr Scourfield tells the programme: “Everything was alright until you got a matter of about half a mile or so from the Dock then you could see this terrific amount of smoke. The nearer you got the denser it got until in the end you could only go at walking pace with the vehicles.”


Five Cardiff firemen were killed by the blaze.


Some of the programme was filmed at Carew Cheriton Control Tower and local historian John Brock is also featured. Children from Sageston CP School took part in the filming of a reconstruction of an air-raid.


The programme’s producer Greg Lewis, a former Western Telegraph journalist, said:

“The programme goes out in the week of the anniversary of the three night blitz on Swansea, but it was important also to tell the story of the oil tank fire and of the largest single raid on Wales which took place on Cardiff in January 1941.”


“We were very glad that Wyndham and Ted were able to share their memories with us, and the Carew Cheriton Control Tower provided a great location for some of the filming. We are very grateful to them all.”