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Books, maps and literature on Gower

Hint: If you are interested in buying any of these recommendations, you can order them direct, from Amazon UK by copying the ISBN number only into the search box given on this page, and clicking on "Go!"
e.g. 0319234193


There are a huge number of books available about Gower, ranging from general guides to specific interest categories.

You can buy any of these books from Amazon, with whom I am an affiliate.

Simply copy the ISBN number into the box displayed at the right hand side of the page, to start your order.

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In Association with Amazon.co.uk
Ordnance Survey Explorer (164) map for Gower ISBN: 0319234193
If you are proposing to walk with your own group, I would recommend that the map that you buy is the OS Explorer (164) map for Gower. ISBN 0-319-23419-3
The scale is 1:25000 (4cm to 1km or 2.5 inches to 1mile). It is much more detailed than the ordinary OS maps. We wouldn't be without it.
Gower, Llanelli (Explorer Maps) Ordnance Survey ISBN: 0319236285
Cardiff, Swansea and Gower (Jarrold Pathfinder Walking Guides) ISBN: 0711724172
Swansea and Gower, Camarthen (Landranger Maps) Ordnance Survey ISBN: 0319228541
Circular Walks in Gower Nick Jenkins ISBN: 0863814778
From the Author - Why I wrote this book.
Gower is a peninsular in south Wales that offers some of the best coastal walking Wales and possibly even the UK has to offer. The coastal scenery is both superb and varied and the book aims to cover most of it in easy to walk stretches. I have also attempted not to neglect the areas away from the coast; rural, peaceful and with a charm all of its own. Here are walks for all capabilities, all seasons and there are some cracking pubs en route too. This is my first walking book (I have also written "Circular Walks in the Black Mountains" and thoroughly enjoyed every step of the research! I have also authored Beacons of Light, a colour photo study of the Brecon Beacons National Park, out Nov 1999. I warmly welcome any feedback from readers.
Gower coastal walks Gordon Avery
ISBN: 0953203867

This book covers 16 coastal walks and should appeal to all walkers. It should also be of interest to all lovers of the natural environment.

There are some nice, easy walks which can be taken at leisure at an easy pace.
There are also some more difficult ones which wil appeal to the more energetic walker looking for a bit of adventure, some stretching of the limbs, and possibly a little intellectual and observational exercise in communion with nature.

Walking Around Gower: 100 Miles - 25 Rambles Albert White
ISBN: 0951878018
Family Walks in Gower (Family Walks S.) Amanda Green
ISBN: 0907758630
The Valleys of South Wales, the Gower and Lower Wye Valley (Mountain Bike Guide) Nick Cotton ISBN: 1871890195
Gower History
Edwardian Gower Revisited David Gwynn & Peter Muxworthy ISBN: 1859021350

Sequel to "A Pictorial Journey Through Edwardian Gower". It offers us another opportunity to wander through Gower in the early years of the twentieth century.

Anyone- whether resident or tourist - interested in Gower and its past will be fascinated by the scenes in these pictures portraying a way of life which has been overtaken by the modern world. Almost all the illustrations are appearing in print for the first time as part of a collection which is undoubtedly an essential addtion to the Gower lover's library.

Gower Peninsula (Archive Photographs: Images of Wales S.) David Gwynn ISBN: 075242615X

This compilation of over 200 evocative images traces some of the changes that had taken place in this unique area over the last century. While for many the Gower Peninsula is indicative of beaches on hot summer days, walks in the woods or across the clifftops or surfing, the area is also home to many people who live and work in this most beautiful place.

The reader is taken on a tour of Gower as it was before the internal combustion engine came to dominate everyday life, when local craftsmen had their place in every village, and families and communities worked together for the benefit and enrichment of all.

Each image is accompanied by supporting text providing a wealth of local colour and historical detail. This comprehensive pictorial record will reawaken memories amongst older residents, whilst bringing to newcomers an opportunity to look at how things used to be.

A History of Gower Derek Draisey
ISBN: 187382713X

This book covers the period of Gower's history from the Romans through to the period of industrialisation with coal mining, copper production, canal building and rapid expansion of the town of Swansea.

Gower's history, like much of the rest of Wales and its borders, tells at times of the animosity between Norman/English and Welsh, at times of great co-operation and trust and at others when loyalties divided on issues of religious, political or social belief that had nothing to do with 'tribal' backgrounds.

Gower Coast Shipwrecks Carl Smith
ISBN: 0951528149

This book tells the story of 250 ships wrecked or stranded on the Gower peninsula. Records for the years before the local newspaper began publication in 1804 are scarce and just 22 incidents are recorded but from that year the record is almost complete.

The vessels lost, range from barques and ships outward bound with coal, or returning with ore for the copper works, to the humble smacks making coastal passages with coal, farm produce or groceries.

The sterling work of the lifeboat crews at Port Eynon and Mumbles is highlighted in many a rescue. The coastguard rocket apparatus companies at Rhossili and Oxwich also saved many crews and their efforts are not forgotten.

Complimented by photographs and contemporary advertisements announcing the sale of wrecked vessels and their cargoes.

A Gower Family: The Lucases of Stouthall and Rhossili Rectory Robert Lucas ISBN: 1873295715
The Lucas family have been part of Gower history for 500 years. Robert Lucas reassses the legends and traces his forbears from Yeoman origins, through the Palladian grace of 18th century to more recent frugal days at the lonely parsonage at Rhossili.
Yesterday's Gower J. Mansel Thomas
ISBN: 085088747X
The Old Parish Churches of Gwent, Glamorgan and Gower Mike Salter
ISBN: 1871731607
Vernacular Gower The Gower Society ISBN: 0902767313
Natural History and Nature
Gower (Collins New Naturalist S.) Jonathan Mullard ISBN: 0007160674
This is a definitive natural history of the Gower Peninsula, coinciding with its 50th anniversary as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, from its heritage coast and its appeal to the naturalist, to the geology, geomorphology, conservation and ecological history of this diverse area. Located to the south west of Swansea and often described as Wales in miniature, Gower Peninsula was designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) in May, 1946. The area is unique in terms of the variety of the habitats and species that occur within its 188 square kilometres. As a result, it has a greater diversity of conservation designations than almost anywhere else in the UK. The natural history of Gower is like most parts of the British Isles - inextricably linked to the activities of man across many thousand years. "New Naturalist Gower Peninsula" uses the evolving landscape and the effect that the associated changes have had on species and habitats as its core. It provides a detailed examination of: the integration of the archaeological and historic landscape with the natural landscape and its associated species; the geological creation of the peninsula; man's influence on the natural environment over the centuries; the coast and channel, including the limestone cliffs, beaches, caves and saltwater marsh; the environmental impact of the Sea Empress oil disaster in 1996, which discharged 72,000 tonnes of oil into the sea off Gower; and the ongoing conservation of the area and the contribution that naturalists can make. Mullard also looks at notable plants species and the over-wintering bird populations on the estuary, which are of international importance. The culmination of years of research and rich with the latest information and full colour illustrations, "New Naturalist Gower Peninsula" is a valuable source of information on this diverse and fascinating area.
A guide to Gower birds Harold E Grenfell
1001 Things to Spot in the Sea (1001 Things to Spot) Katie Daynes ISBN: 0794502296
Reviewer: jspendlebury from Great Britain
This large colourful book was a big hit with my 4 year old daughter, the aim of the game is to find the sea creatures and objects printed around the edges of the large scene. There are usually more than one of each item so it's quite educational, counting how many of each item.
Some of the creatures are very unusual with great names, my daughter enjoyed finding the creatures and learning the names.
The illustrations in the book are in a hand drawn style typical to Usborne publishing, they are clear and would be easy for children to copy in their own drawings.
The book is suitable for ages 3-around 9 in my opinion because some of the items are easier to find than others, smaller children need a little help but soon get the idea of spotting the creatures.
The book has a similar feel to "Where's Wally" but it's a little easier, even I have trouble with that one and I'm 33! --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
General Guides
Gower Coast George Edmunds
ISBN: 0906570018

Gerge Edmunds was born at Newport in the then County of Monmouth (now Gwent). He is a Sales Engineer with a deep and abiding interest in sub-aqua diving and all that this activity can mean. His interest extends to shipwrecks, legends, mystery and folklore, and in particular that relating to Gower, a small peninsula along the South Wales coastline.

This part of the Welsh coast has for centuries been the scene of much history. George Edmunds has painstakingly unearthed some of the more recent history and legends in his research on the shipwrecks around the Gower coastline. The result is this book, which has taken him six years to write and compile - truly a labour of love.

There is a full account of the Dollar Ship and many others, coming from the mouths of the Gower people themselves, with whom he has spent many a long hour. In addition to a most comprehensive listing of shipwrecks, with their attendant tales of horror, smuggling and brave lifeboat rescues, there is a guided tour of the coastline and reference to places existing today that bore witness to the happenings of long ago.

A portrait of Gower Evan Evans ISBN: B0000CIEPM
Portrait of Gower Wynford Vaughan-Thomas
ISBN: 0709155778
Specific Villages
Rhossili Robert Lucas ISBN:0905928938
The history of Rhossili captured in photographs with narrative.
Estuary People: Penclawdd 1900-1970 Ann Roberts
ISBN: 0954083601

Penclawdd is situated on the North Gower Coast where estuary meets sea. This books contains recollections of its inhabitants. We read vivid portraits of life in the village: the cockle women, out in all weathers, enduring the hardships of the estuary; the miners underground; those that went away to war and those who lived in the Barracks - the row of houses with plenty of community spirit and no running water; the heart and soul of village life from those who attended church and chapel. We learn what excited, inspired and concerned them: gossip in village stores; the local rugby teams; the wonderful music. Or was it the cawl, the broth, that makes up all our lives, that consists of all these ingredients. And then the characters; Joe the Cockney proudly bore home a sheep's head to make cawl, Carl Gustav Pamp, the Swedish sailor who never regained his land legs.

Ann Morgan, nee Roberts, is Penclawdd born and bred. She has spent years listening to her friends. She is now writing their story. Please read it and then ask: is it any wonder why hiraeth is so powerful a feeling for the Welsh?

Higher and Lower: Illustrated History of the Higher and Lower Divisions of Llanrhidian Including Llanrhidian, Penclawdd and Three Crosses Rodney Norman Cooper
ISBN: 0953452301
The history of the Higher and Lower Divisions of Llanrhidian - including the villages of Llanrhidian, Penclawdd, Three Crosses, Crofty, Llanmorlais and Wernffrwd.
Pwlldu Remembered: The Story of Gower's Smallest Village Heather Margaret Holt ISBN: 0952916509
Miscellaeneous books either based in Gower or by Gower authours
Dancers at Sea and Other Tales Reni Stableforth, Margaret Rees (Editor)
ISBN: 0954627105
A collection of stories, essays and poems from The Horton Writing Group
Aspects of Welsh Slate Pip Knight-Jones ISBN: 086381882X
A Gower Story Deborah Fisher
ISBN: 0953868826

Settled in her village home, minding her own business, Olwen Harris looks forward to middle age with resignation if not eagerness. She has everything she could want except a family of her own; and she thinks she can live without that. Little does she know that the local community is about to be blown apart by terrible rumours about the activities of its vicar, Tim Sutcliff, Olwen's friend and personal idol.

Along with Elvis "The Music" Jones, the organist and choirmaster, Olwen stands by the Sutcliff family in their struggle to prove Tim's innocence. Life takes another unexpected turn when Tim's personable solicitor appears on the scene.

Spiced with snippets of observation about the daily life of Swansea and the scenery of the Gower peninsula, this book will excite, intrigue and finally melt your heart.

For twenty years, Deborah Fisher lived and worked in the Swansea area. She is the author of several novels and a biographical dictionary, Who's Who in Welsh History (Christopher Davies, 1997). She now lives in the Vale of Glamorgan with her husband and two children. t


Three Corners of Gower Peter R Douglas Jones

Gower captured in sensational photographs.

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