Oral History collection: Richard Evans (born 26 Sep. 1929) interviewed by Elizabeth Belcham about Penderyn; quarrying.

  • This material is held at
  • Reference
      GB 216 TH 89i
  • Dates of Creation
      26 Oct. 1988
  • Language of Material
  • Physical Description
      1 audio recording

Scope and Content

TH89i Track 1. [00:00:20] Community: Richard Evans of Glynneath talking about Penderyn. [00:01:04] Community: Talks about industrial development in Penderyn , iron works, lime works etc. [00:01:52] Community: Penderyn church dedicated to St Cennyg. [00:03:22] Community: Brick works in Penderyn, horse and carts bringing supplies. [00:04:04] Community: Walking over the foel to get watercress on a Sunday. [00:04:45] Social: Trips to Barry or Porthcawl for Sunday school trips. [00:05:12] Social: Lovely childhood - allowed to wander all over Penderyn, farms etc. [00:05:50] Community: Breaking the rockface in the quarry by hand to lift the stone into the trams. [00:06:45] Community: Every man had to break 18 tons a day. They could go home then. [00:07:24] Community: Stone went to Ebbw Vale steel works or used for tarmacadam. [00:08:13] Community: Riding on the steel locomotive from school to Hirwaun station. [00:09:00] Community: Names of crew of locomotive. [00:09:27] Community: Keeping as double barrelled gun on the locomotive to shoot Pheasants. [00:10:18] Community: Ty Newydd, big house in Penderyn. [00:11:30] Community: Father left the quarry and went to work for Brecknock council. [00:12:21] Community: Father was called up to the army and he didn't like it so he came back to work the mines. [00:13:52] Community: Talks about staff at Penderyn and 200 hounds - money to keep them came from all the mines he owned. [00:14:30] Community: Dead horses from the mines were used to feed the hounds. [00:16:19] Community: People were never allowed to the front of Penderyn mansion - the maids would let them look into the kitchen. [00:17:10] Community: During the war, father bought a pig, collected the pig on a horse and cart, out in the woods the pig was killed and taken to Penderyn farm to be butchered. [00:19:05] Community: While the pig was hanging in the barn a bailiff came round and found it. But they could keep it. [00:20:10] Community: Bus service form Penderyn to Aberdare started in 1920. [00:21:00] Community: Buses supplied from Castle garage Neath. [00:22:16] Community: Farming - each farm supported a family. [00:22:37] Community: Families would barter goods between themselves, helping with hay making, letting familiy have a part of a field. [00:24:15] Community: Marking the sheep for each farmer - ear cutting. [00:24:44] Community: Morgan Rees Jones - well known historian in Neath. [00:25:17] Community: Cwm Taff reservoir. [00:25:40] Community: Royal mail stage coach from Merrthyr to Brecon drawn by four horses, changed horses at Lamb and Flag, Glynneath and then at Cardiff Arms, Hirwaun. [00:27:00] Social: Halloween celebrations. [00:27:45] Social: Funerals in Penderyn, large gathering around the house, coffin in the hearse and everyone would sing a hymn before moving away, then walk in procession to church. [00:29:10] Community: Penderyn Church graveyard was circular as the Celts believed that the devil could climb over the corners. [00:31:20] Community: Has photographs taken around 1910 showing manual sledge type carts being used, just as the Red Indians did. [00:32:40] Community: Talks about relics being moved to museums, St Fagans. Believes things should be kept local. [00:33:50] Community: The carts were used to drag the stone to be built in Hermon Chapel by Oxen. [00:35:30] Social: He is the 8th Richard Evans in his family. [00:35:50] Community: Battle of Agincourt - 10 archers from Ystradfellte in the battle. Believes some of his family were the archers. [00:37:05] Community: The Welsh Long Bow was used by the archers. [00:37:50] Community: Caer Howell farm where father was born, but farm could not support the family so father went to the quarry. [00:39:15] Community: The Brecon Arms pub is now a post office, two cottages either side were stables. [00:39:45] Community: Mothers famiy were the last to brew beer in Penderyn. [00:40:25] Social: Photo of two great grandfathers in the same photo. [00:40:47] Community: Talks about the pubs in Penderyn, old and new. [00:41:45] Social: Great celebrations in the pubs on Saints days - also with a hunt with the hounds. [00:42:30] Community: Special pudding, like a bread pudding, would be made for the celebration. Up to 1856 - because the methodists came!. [00:44:05] Social: Great party every year in a farm in Penderyn - barn was empty so it was held there before haymaking in June. [00:45:30] Social: After the party they went up to a plateau and would go into a circle and play kissing the ring (it was a matchmaker party). [00:46:45] Community: Pig killing day - holding the pig down while he was being stabbed, dressed in oil skins because of pressure of blood coming out of the pig.