A Tribute to Bessie Davies

Bessie by Ianto Mor

Ianto Mor, local writer and photographer, has paid tribute to Bessie Davies whom he describes as “a remarkable and unique Pembrokeshire character who personified the Gwaun Valley. I had the privilege of meeting her on a number of occasions and introduced my friends to her deep warmth and comical, quirky ways.

“In particular, Aunty Bessie permitted me to take a photograph of her ‘on the other side of the bar’ on the morning of 25 October 2016, in preparation for the book I was writing, Photographing Pembrokeshire – A Paradise for Pirates, published by Y Lolfa in 2021. It was replicated in the Western Mail published on 4 September 2021.
“May I offer my sincere condolences to her loving family.”
Here is an extract from Ianto’s book:
“The inquisitive visitor will often wander off the
 well-known trail in the Gwaun Valley of Pembrokeshire in search 
of one of the county’s typical one-pub villages. There
 are some inimitable characters, with one in particular standing out: Bessie Davies – ‘Aunty Bessie’ – of the Dyffryn Arms, Pontfaen. A true legend who has been pouring traditional ales from the jug and helping wayfarers from all around the world for over 66 years, unadulterated by digitised menus and service tills.”

Bessie’s pub by Ianto Mor



Ianto, or Ieuan as he is also known, can be contacted through his webpage: https://iantomor-photography.co.uk/

The book Photographing Pembrokeshire – A Paradise for Pirates can be purchased through the publisher, Y Lolfa or through Amazon and other outlets such as Waterstones. We can vouch for what a gem the book is. Please note, any images you see here are the property of Ieaun Morris and should not be reproduced.




Bessie Davies was known in the north of Pembrokeshire as a remarkable landlady. She had worked at the Dyffryn Arms, known as Bessie’s pub, in the Gwaun Valley since 1950, helping her mother-in-law manage the place. She took it over in 1972, a family-owned business for more then 150 years. 

Bessie died in December 2023 at the age of 93.


Kitty Parsons

Kitty has forgotten how long she has been here now but she loves Pembrokeshire for its beauty and it's people. She spends her time searching out stories for pembrokeshire.online, swimming in the sea , drawing and painting as Snorkelfish and eating cake. She says "Pembrokeshire.online has been an opportunity to celebrate this beautiful county and its people. Keep the stories coming. We love to hear from you."

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