Near Abersychan, Afan Lwyd Valley (SO250033. SO244041, level. So251034, pits. So252033)

The Old Pit worked between 1820 and 1845. The four New Pits were sunk for ironstone and coal and worked until 1912. It was owned in turn by the British Iron Company and the New British Iron Company until c1850, and then they were worked by the Ebbw Vale Company until 1879 with W.P. James as manager. In the period 1880 to 1893, they were worked along with the Red Ash Level by James and Emmanuel. The Red Ash Level continued to work until 1893. They then lay idle until 1906 when they were worked by Golding and Winston for a year, the next owner to try his luck was D. Buck who worked them from 1907 to 1908 employing 3 men in 1907 and 10 men underground and 2 men on the surface in 1908.

The Cwmburgwm Colliery Company worked the Brithdir (Red Ash) seam, probably from the Red Ash Level between 1909 and 1912. They employed 13 men in 1910 and 12 men in 1911. The Old Cwmburgwm level was owned by W & J. Harris in 1925, followed by the Waen Natyglo Company between 1929 and 1931 when it was abandoned.

This area was particularly rich in ironstone and shallow lying coal seams, with a report for the British Iron Works, commissioned in 1825 claiming a yield per acre of 15,000 tons of ironstone, and 30,000 tons of coal. The last water balance gear on site in the South Wales Coalfield was once scattered around this area, also the Red Ash chimney stack is still insitu.

Just a few examples of the fatalities at this mine:

  • 5/01/1858, John Charles, Joseph Whitcombe,: Boiler explosion (surface). 3 killed.
  • 20/05/1863, Abraham Bryant, Age: 21: Miner: Fall of stone
  • 6/02/1886, Sydney Smith, Age: 19: Haulier: He was riding on the couplings between two trams and putting up his head it came in contact with the roof and his spine was dislocated.


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

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