As a very new army recruit on his first posting, Ron Garner-Watts came to Pembroke Dock to join his Royal Artillery unit – the well-remembered 22 Light Anti-Aircraft Regiment - in 1957.

His fascination with the military history of the town which later became his family home has led, over 60 years later, to the publication of a very detailed history of the military connections, in his aptly titled book ‘Garrison Town’.

This has been published by his family in tribute to Ron who has in recent years has had poor health and is a resident at a home in Saundersfoot.

Pembroke Dock was a key garrison community for the UK Armed Forces for over 150 years – from the early 1800s to the late 1960s – and the pages of ‘Garrison Town’ reveal the sheer scale of the military connections.

Ron records that Pembroke Dock became the seventh largest garrison in the UK, hosting 60 infantry battalions, some more than once, 43 artillery batteries, 20 of which formed here, and many militias. Some of these had strong Pembrokeshire connections and the book covers much more than just Pembroke Dock’s military heritage.

The roles of the Royal Naval Dockyard and, later, the Royal Air Force are also acknowledged.

Following 21 years in the Artillery, which included four tours in Northern Ireland and in West Germany and the Far East, Ron became much involved in his home community, joining the town council and was mayor on two occasions, in 2005-2006 and 2008-2009.

He also contributed greatly to local heritage initiatives, was honorary curator of the Gun Tower Museum, and was much involved with organisations like the Royal Artillery Association and the Royal British Legion.

Running to 138 pages and with many fascinating illustrations, ‘Garrison Town’ costs £10 and is available from the family via daughter Tracy Davies on; also from the Pembroke Dock Town Council office in Dimond Street, the town’s Heritage Centre in the Dockyard Chapel and Pennar Post Office.

All proceeds will support Brooklands Residential Home in Saundersfoot where Ron has been a resident in recent years. The family of Ron Garner-Watts would like to thank John Evans of the Heritage Centre, Andy Evans of Mondii Printers, Mandy Hart and Sarah Scourfield of Pembroke Dock Town Council for all their help.