Another well attended meeting of Troed-y-rhiw Local history forum was held last Thursday at Carmel Chapel.
Brian Barnett made an extremely interesting presentation on the history of The Willows. His talk touched on:-
- early interest from the Council in creating a recreation ground on what was boggy land which was drained, raised and levelled by tipping domestic ash and rubbish;
- the opening, in 1931, of the Welfare Ground which was then maintained through a levy on colliers’ wages;
- the establishment, in 1932, of a Boys’ club for over 16’s;
- the importance of football over many years as a mainstay of the Willows including the glory years of the late 1940’s when games against Merthyr would attract crowds in excess of 3,000;
- the use of the Willows by a whole range of other village groups and as a focal point for numerous events and celebrations including the 1951 Festival of Britain, 1952 Festival of Music & Art and 1953 Coronation.
Brian, who has been associated with Troedyrhiw Boys’ and Girls’ Club for over 50 years and, in 2006, was awarded an M.B.E. for his work, described how what was originally a boys-only organisation grew from humble beginnings. He explained how, despite setbacks including three serious arson attacks, it was possible to raise the support and funding required to build the splendid Willows Centre which operates as a youth and community centre for the benefit of the whole community.
In his closing remarks Brian referred to the fact that the current trustees of The Willows are all aged over 65 and explained that the committee desperately needs new members to ensure that this vital community asset remains in the ownership of residents.
If you can help in any way please contact The Willows Centre, Troedyrhiw on Tel: 01443 692198 or Email: firstname.lastname@example.org