Aberdare, Cynon Valley

This was a small mine that was opened in 1855 and owned in 1867 by Rhys and Richards, in 1870 by Rhys and Company and by 1878 by the Bwllfa and Merthyr Dare Colliery Company Limited when the manager was Rees Llewellyn.

There was a widespread strike of hauliers throughout Great Britain in 1874 which stopped many a pit. The Western Mail of the 4th of September 1874 reported:

At Merthyr Dare Colliery yesterday, there was an expectation that work would be resumed, and the horses were gathered in. It was a sight to see them collected from the pleasant meadows where they had been grazing, and driven much against their will to the dark openings of pit and level. There was something humanlike in their gaze as they looked back to the sunshine and the meadows, so green and flourishing with the second growth, but the haulier’s whip and harsh cries overcame all obstinacy, and in they went; but even then the hauliers would not go down, and the result was that the horses came back and gamboled with extra spirit in the surrounding field.

On the 15th of October 1878, David Davies, aged only 14 years, and a collier boy, died under a fall of roof. While on the 18th of February 1927, A.G. Allen was only 16 years of age when he also died under a roof fall.

It was still listed in 1888, but not in 1898. In 1905 it employed 70 men underground, in 1907 the lists show that it employed 60 men underground but none on the surface. In 1908 it was arranged to give ventilation support for the Bwllfa’s. It is listed as finally closing in 1931.


Cwmdare, Cynon Valley

This was probably the same colliery, or part of, the above. It was a drift that was sunk to the Four-Feet seam, not listed in 1913, but shown in 1917 as being owned by the Bwllfa and Merthyr Dare Steam Collieries (1891) Limited.

By 1935 it had been absorbed into the Bwllfa No.2 Colliery, and at that time they employed 105 men on the surface and 655 men underground.


Information supplied by Ray Lawrence and used here with his permission.

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