Fleeting Wonders: Vacation In a WWI Cable Hut - Atlas Obscura
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Fleeting Wonders: Vacation In a WWI Cable Hut

The Cable Hut–once a war tool, now a romantic getaway.

The Cable Hut–once a war tool, now a romantic getaway. (Photo: ceridwen/geograph CC BY-SA 2.0)

Prefer your weekend getaway with a side of intrigue? You might want to check out the Cable Hut in Pembrokeshire, Wales. The hut, which was recently reincarnated as a tiny vacation home, spent the beginning of its life housing telecommunications employees, who relayed important wartime messages between the United States and London.

In 1862, officials laid an underwater cable between Wexford, Ireland, and this hut, telegraphically connecting the two countries for the first time. Because American mail was routed through Ireland, this enabled news to spread much faster between the two allies. The hut was lined with benches and telegraph instruments, and the clerks slept in three-tier bunks in the back. During the First World War, this communication hub was important enough that soldiers were dispatched to patrol the roads around it.

After the war ended, the building enjoyed a short stint as a bathing hut before being purchased as a vacation home. Its most recent owners, John Marsh and Elly Winn, kept the hut’s distinct stone-and-sheet-metal exterior, but the indoors is now less “Spartan transmission station” and more “adorable gingerbread cottage.” The nearby ocean, of course, remains the same.

If you would like to stay in the Cable Hut, send a wire to Unique Home Stays, and hope it doesn’t get intercepted.

Every day, we track down a fleeting wonder—something amazing that’s only happening right now. Have a tip for us? Tell us about it! Send your temporary miracles to cara@atlasobscura.com.