Tondu, Bridgend

A brief note in the Glasgow Herald of the 27th of August 1874 stated that five men died when the staging in the shaft that they were on gave way and they fell 25 feet into the water. It was then owned by the Barrow-in-Furnace Iron and Steel Company. Stradling Llewellyn, Thomas Davies, Franks, Charles Howells, and John Rock were drowned, while two others managed to jump into a bowk that was going up the shaft. All were sinkers.

A similar accident occurred on the 28th of September 1881, when the scaffolding that four men working in the shaft were on was hit by falling masonry and they fell 150 feet to their deaths. They were; John Edwards, aged 30, sinker, John Francis, aged 27, John Pascoe, aged 27, William Penhole, aged 28 years.

Some of the others to die at this pit were:

  • 15/11/1877, David Edmunds, aged 22, sinker, explosion of gunpowder. Thomas Evans, aged 27, manager, shaft incident.
  • 22/7/1911, David J. Davies, aged 38, overman, David Lewis, aged 37, collier, David Rogers, aged 45, manager, suffocated by gas. Injured were; David Evans, aged 41, collier, Daniel Flyn, aged 33, repairer, and Benjamin Walker, aged 32, collier.

This pit was sunk to a depth of 1,299 feet 8 inches and was also called Barrow Pit. It was owned in 1878 by the Barrow Hematite Steel Company who employed W. Kellet as manager. In 1884 it was owned by the Barrow Iron and Steel Company with Charles Forgie as the manager. In 1907 it employed 157 men and in 1908/9 it was owned by the Bryncethin Colliery Company of Cornhill, London and employed 161 men working underground and 39 men working at the surface of the mine.

Samuel Rees was the manager in the 1908/11 period and in 1911 it employed 140 men with the owners being Coppee Evence of London. It was later owned by the Bryncethin Brick Works Limited and by 1913 by the New Bryncethin Colliery Company Limited when it employed 240 men producing coking, manufacturing and steam coals. At that time it was managed by S. Bryant. In 1915/6 it employed 300 men with the manager being W. Jones.

The Eskyn seam was abandoned in November 1915 and the Lantern Rider seam was abandoned in February 1917.

Some statistics: Manpower:

  • 1900: 18.
  • 1905: 26.
  • 1907: 157.
  • 1908/9: 200.
  • 1910: 127.
  • 1911: 140.
  • 1912: 241.
  • 1913: 240.
  • 1915/6: 300.


This information has been provided by Ray Lawrence, from books he has written, which contain much more information, including many photographs, maps and plans. Please contact him at for availability.

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