Sport in Rosemarket

A number of traditional leisure activities can be linked with Rosemarket. Easter Monday sport, before such contests were banned in 1849, centred around cockfighting. This was ‘the very favourite sport’ in Pembrokeshire. Originally introduced by the Romans, cockfighting was popular among all social classes across Wales and cockpits were common in most villages. Pembrokeshire cockpits were not pits at all, rather raised tables of beaten earth.

The Rosemarket ‘pit’ stood on the piece of common land overlooked by St Ismael’s Church, at the bottom of the village. The exact site is no longer identifiable as the area around it has since been used for a carpenter’s shop, a quoits pitch and the approach to a Chapel of Rest.

The most popular village sport during the 1920s was quoits, a game that is said to have derived from ‘horse shoe pitching’ and involved the throwing of rings (usually made of rope) over a set distance to land over or near a spike. A village team played on the site of the cockpit. Big House Farm also fielded a quoits ‘eight’ which competed against the Rosemarket and other village teams. Their pitch was inside the Big House yard.

The Pembrokeshire Hunt met at Rosemarket on New Year’s Day and the Saturday before Remembrance Sunday for many years. The undated photo below was recently uncovered and shows West Street, Rosemarket. Having consulted with committee members of The Pembrokeshire Hunt, it is believed to be sometime during the 1940s and no later than the 1950s. The gentleman in the front is a Master, so indicated by the buttons on his tunic.

Pembrokeshire Hunt in West Street, Rosemarket
Pembrokeshire Hunt in West Street, Rosemarket

Rosemarket Cricket Club

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