port, historic and present county of Pembrokeshire (Sir Benfro), Wales, on the north shore of a deep natural harbour. The inlet, also named Milford Haven, for many centuries served as a landing and embarkation point on the route from southwestern Wales to Ireland, but the town was founded only in 1793. It has had a checkered maritime history, suffering a rapid decline of its whaling industry and losing to other ports on the Haven its naval dockyard and Irish packet service, all before 1860. It gained importance as a fishing port by 1900, though, and since 1960 it has become one of Europe's leading oil ports, one of the few places in western Europe able to accommodate the largest tankers. Major refineries were built, and both oil and petroleum products arrive at the port via pipeline. An oil-fired power station was built nearby. Pop. (2001) 13,806.
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