Reached via some steep concrete steps leading down from the entrance to Mumbles Pier, Mumbles Beach is a small, sheltered area of sand and rock pools. The pools become very popular during the holiday season, where children and adults alike can be seen, net in hand, searching for hermit crabs and the numerous small fish trapped here by the retreating tide.
The most prominent feature of Mumbles Beach are the twin tidal islets which gave Mumbles its title (its name derives from “Marmelles” – meaning “Breasts” – which the islets are said to resemble).
On the inner islet, several defensive installations and army buildings from WW2 can still be seen. The outer islet supports Mumbles Lighthouse.
The original lighthouse, built in 1793, was coal-fired and the the old tram track and wooden winch that carried coal up to the original twin fires can still easily be identified along the beach.
Of further historical note, this area was used for experiments in over water telegraphy by J. D. Llewelyn and Sir Charles Wedstone – that even predated those by Marconi. During WW1, the beach was used for trench practise and in WW2, the beach was protected against possible enemy invasion by machine gun turrets.