It is known that a strong trade in oysters was well established in Swansea Bay in the Middle Ages and the oyster beds of Mumbles were considered the most prolific in Britain by 1684, when the first Duke of Beaufort toured Wales.

A vessel with a rig was introduced in the mid 19th Century. The dredge was made to a local design and attached to the bottom of each of the 180 boats that were used to gather the oysters off the sea bed in the 1860's.

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