Tag Archives: wales


Saron on 1875 Map (1)

Why not pop in to lend a hand for an hour or two or just to see what is being done? You will be made most welcome.


Troedyrhiw – Its Heritage & Environment

Saron Heritage Plaque

If you are interested in the local history of TROEDYRHIW and the quality of the environment in the village then please think about attending the next meeting of FRIENDS OF SARON. This will be held in the ANGEL INN in Bridge Street at 6.30pm on Friday 16 November.

It would be good to see you there.

Amongst the topics on the agenda are:-

  • Securing a lasting legacy for the SARON GRAVEYARD POJECT following leaseholder funded repairs to the graveyard boundary and the completion of the volunteer led improvement programme.
  • Unlocking modest levels of funding for certain aspects of the improvement programme as it works towards the creation of SARON MEMORIAL & WILDLIFE GARDEN as a community asset.

A Coal Community at War 1914 – 1918

The next meeting of Troed-y-rhiw Local History Forum will be held next Thursday 15 November at Carmel Chapel in the village. The topic will be ‘A COAL COMMUNITY AT WAR 1914 – 1918.’ We are fortunate in having as our speaker for this event David Maddox OBE, Honorary Life Vice president WHSI.

Local H F 11

Conscientious Objection in the Great War

The WW1 Centenary commemorations will, rightly, focus on those who served in the armed forces and in other ways and on the huge loss of life sustained on all sides in this conflict. There was, however, a significant level of opposition in this country to the War which cannot be ignored. The chapels had traditionally held pacifist views and the War caused a crisis of conscience within many. Others opposed the War on political grounds feeling that it was a ‘capitalist’ and ‘imperialist’ war and nothing to do with ordinary working people. The Independent Labour Party, which had a strong presence in the Merthyr area including in Troedyrhiw, was particularly active in promoting this position.

Women in the Great War

In the absence of many of the male population during World War 1, as later in World War 2, women took on many new roles. An interesting example is Alice Lidster who became station master/mistress of Troedyrhiw Halt when the previous holder of this post joined the army. She is thought to have been the first woman in Wales to have taken on such a position.


Troedyrhiw War Memorial

The War Memorial in Troedyrhiw Park was unveiled in 1921, possibly earlier than any of the others in the Merthyr Borough. It was paid for by public subscription which says much about the generosity of the people of the village. A committee was set up to organise the raising of funds and the design and erection of the memorial. A prominent member of the committee was Cornelius Pryce who was a monumental mason based in Troedyrhiw and the sculptor and architect of the memorial.

WW1 Rolls of Honour in Troedyrhiw

Following the Great War many towns and villages erected Rolls of Honour in places of worship, workplaces etc. Troedyrhiw was no exception.

The Great War – Men from Troedyrhiw that Served

During WW1, as Troedyrhiw was a ‘coal community’, many of its men were engaged on vital war work extracting the fuel that was so essential for Royal Navy ships in addition to industrial and domestic uses. It is surprising, therefore, to find that so many men had volunteered for military service so early in the War as these newspaper extracts show.

Samuel Rees Phillips & the Great War

There is a plaque in St John’s Church, Troedyrhiw dedicated to the memory of Samuel Rees Phillips who died in Jerusalem during WW1. From the date (May 1917) and location I think that Samuel must have been wounded in the First or Second Battle of Gaza but I can’t be sure. As he enlisted in the Welsh Regiment early in the War (1914) I assume that he would have been involved in the disastrous Gallipoli Campaign (1915) and possibly the Battle of Romani (1916) before receiving ultimately fatal wounds in the Palestine Campaign. Please take a while during this WW1 Centenary period to think of Samuel and all of the other casualties of this dreadful conflict.


William H. Davies & the Great War

Ann Jones of Angus Street, Troedyrhiw has kindly provided information about her paternal grandfather William Henry Davies who served in the Great War and survived to return home to the village. Of his war medals, the 1914 Star, British War Medal and Victory Medal – affectionately known as ‘Pip’, ‘Squeek’ and ‘Wilfred’ – only Pip and Wilfred have survived. It is believed that Squeek was sold many years ago for its silver content. Ann has also inherited William’s swagger stick.