Postcards from Premià de Mar

We’re having a quiet day. We’re exploring Premià’s change from fishing village to dormitory town via its skirmish with industrialisation in the 19th century. Few signs are left of its days as a textile town, like many in Catalonia.

Fishermen’s cottages built round about 1839, just before industry arrived and expanded the town.

But here’s something we can’t get our heads round. The textile and gas industries depended on coal. And the coal was transported from Barcelona by rail, on the very first trainline in Spain, opened in 1848.

But where did the coal come from? Asturias, some of it. But most of it came by sea from England. Just think: England, all the way down the coast of France to the Iberian peninsula which had to be skirted virtually in its entirety. It seems economic madness, but it can’t have been.

The station still exists. The nearby docks hardly at all. One man and his dog play in the shallows of la Descàrrega. I’m sure they don’t give a thought either of this area’s industrial past, nor of its more recent role in the Spanish Civil War. Bunkers were erected here to protect the railway signals from attack by Francoist troops, and you can see their remains in the featured photo..

One happy dog. His master’s having a swim. That’s Barcelona in the distance.

Author: margaret21

I'm retired and living in North Yorkshire, where I walk as often as I can, write, volunteer, and travel as often as I can.

26 thoughts on “Postcards from Premià de Mar”

  1. Power from dirty old English coal just think now of all the solar energy they must get from their days of beautiful, clear blue skies. A lovely part of the world to live as shown in your sunny photos.


      1. Looks like today could be the day, but the field of replacement candidates is somewhat concerning. We need a GE and a hung parliament where smaller parties might gain some influence.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I know that kind of constituency in parts of rural Suffolk they say you could put a blue rosette on a pig and it would be off to Westminster. 🙄 Sadly, I don’t think either of the two main parties in England will push for PR.


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