Protected Wrecks


4.1 Background

‘Wrecks’ are designated under the 1973 Protection of Wrecks Act.

There are numerous maritime wrecks in the seas around Wales. Although all of them have historic value, six currently have legal protection. These six are known as ‘designated wrecks’ or ‘protected wrecks’.

‘Wreck’ is the term used to describe something that has been lost at sea and can include something that fell overboard, something that was thrown overboard to lighten the ship, or the vessel itself.


4.2 Frequency of Update

Although the process to designate wrecks is ongoing, the current dataset has remained static for a number of years, however to avoid re-using old data, users should periodically obtain the latest version from Lle.


4.3 Depictions

A chart displaying the location of a Protected Wreck does not form part of the official record. The GIS depictions were drawn from the positional information given in the Statutory Instrument under which this site was designated.


4.4 Use of Data

There are no use restrictions on this data. Recipients may re-use, reproduce, disseminate this data free of charge in any format or medium, provided they do so accurately, acknowledging both the source and copyright as specified (see below),, and do not use it in a misleading context. It is the recipient's responsibility to ensure the data is fit for the intended purpose, that dissemination or publishing does not result in duplication, and that it is fairly interpreted. Advice on interpretation should be sought where required. This information is periodically checked, however, if you wish to discuss the dataset, please contact Historic Environment Service (Cadw).

When using the above data under the Open Government Licence, please include the following attribution statement: -

Designated Historic Asset GIS Data, The Welsh Historic Environment Service (Cadw), DATE [the date that you received the data from Cadw], licensed under the Open Government Licence


4.5 Other Information

Further information regarding Designated Wrecks can be found on the Historic Environment Service (Cadw) website by following the link below: -

The Designation description is available online via Cof Cymru – National Historic Assets of Wales by following the link below: -


General Advice

Guidance notes for finders of historic wrecks and for sports divers are available from Cadw. Licences are required from the Secretary of State for Wales for the monitoring, survey or excavation of designated historic wrecks.

11 July 2017

Description Type Endpoint
CADW Designated Wrecks WMS (inspire-wg:Cadw_DesignatedWrecks)
CADW Designated Wrecks WFS (inspire-wg:Cadw_DesignatedWrecks)

Click download links to open them in the browser, or right click and 'Save as' to download to your machine.
Description Format Download Link
CADW Designated Wrecks Shapefile
CADW Designated Wrecks GeoJSON
CADW Designated Wrecks KML
CADW Designated Wrecks GML