Historical Notes



The Cynon Valley History Society was founded in Aberdare in 1971. Our objectives are to promote, encourage and maintain an active interest in the history of the district in all its aspects; to arrange talks and lectures; to undertake original research and assist in the collection of local material such as manuscripts, books, artefacts and photographs, and to publish titles on local history.

The Society presents a programme of 10 lectures each season and publishes a quarterly newsletter HANES, (History).

Please click on the links above to find out more about us, our publications and programme of lectures.


1 Our latest publication

The Cwm: A lost Community

Society member Rob Jones has written our latest local history book entitled The Cwm: A lost Community. This small settlement was located along the banks of the River Dare accessed by continuing along Glan Road beyond Glandare House—now demolished and where St John Baptist School is now located. A few small terraces of houses were to be found there stretching as far as Brunel’s wooden viaduct. There was also a small place of worship for the residents. The book has resulted from several years of research using old newspapers, photographs and interviews with the people, or their relatives, who once lived there.
Rob Jones was assisted by society members Alan Abraham, John Davey and Haydn Williams in the preparation of the book, which first went on sale in mid-April 2024.

2 Geological History A major new article has been added to the Historical Notes section of this website. It reviews 600 million years of geological history of the Cynon Valley. It was written by Dr David E. Roberts of Abergavenny, but who grew up in Blaengwawr, Aberdare. The society much appreciates the work undertaken to compete this substantial review of local geology.

Old Aberdare XI

3 Recent Publications

(i) The Society has also published Old Aberdare Volume XI. Our 50th anniversary edition.

The topics included:
The Little Theatre: a century of drama.
The Poet Alun Lewis’ background at Cwmaman.
Reuben Silverman, Aberdare Leader Cartoonist.
Dr. Alistair Wilson: The way it used to be in Aberdare.
Aberdare’s Town Plan, 1957–1963.
John Ewington, trade union pioneer and the TVR Dispute.

Volume XI has sold exceptionally well.
It has now sold out, and is therefore no longer available for purchase.

(ii) Another recent Publication was A History of the Aberdare Valley Ironworks by Steven Graham and the late Ken Collins. Further details can be found on our publications page.

4 Cynon Valley Museum
The latest news of the museum can be found on their Facebook page:

St Johns
Commercial Place

Commercial Place, Aberdare

small tithe map

Aberdare village according to the
Tithe map of 1847