Ystradgynlais & District

History and Heritage

The Old Tredegar, Upper Cwmtwrch

The Old Tredegar, Upper Cwmtwrch, was located adjacent to Cwmtwrch Welfare Hall, and known as 'Y Sticle'. This pub is no longer open for business, but is used for accommodation by a training or adventure group.

The Old Tredegar, Upper Cwmtwrch, in modern times.

From the Llais

From the Labour Voice newspaper, 6th March 1926 came a report on the renewal of licenses for Upper Cwmtwrch at Ystradgynlais Police Court. There were three pubs in the village (The New Tredegar, The Old Tredegar, and the Lamb Inn) and the police wanted to close one of them down, thinking there was too many pubs for the population:-


The Old Tredegar Arms was then taken. Inspector Evans said the licensee was Mr Harold Davies, who was the son-in-law of the owner, Mr Joseph D Williams Aubrey Arms Gurnos. The licensee also worked as a traveller on two or three days a week. The gross annual value was £21 and rateable value £16. The windows were very small and room dark inside. The general appearance of the house was that of a cottage. An additional kitchen had been built. The premises were not satisfactorily adapted for the purpose. He was of the opinion that an honest attempt had been made to carry out improvements. It was a very different house now to what it was before the present owner had it. The consumption was for barrels and 130 flagons per week.
Questioned by Mr Stanley Alexander Ystalyfera, the inspector said it was the only free house in the village. He did not think it would be difficult to improve the lighting as the window could easily be enlarged. It would be correct to say that the house would be convenient to people visiting the public hall nearby.
In answer to superintendent Williams, the inspector was of the opinion that it would not be a misfortune if the house was not there (Laughter).
Mr Alexander said this house dated back to 1822 and the present owner came into possession in 1923. About £500 had been spent on improvements since then. This was the only free house in the place and they specialised in refreshments. He submitted a petition from the inhabitants asking for the retention of the licenses and it had been signed by 100 people.
William Morgan, builder Cwmtwrch, one of the people who signed the petition, spoke to seeing it being signed by a number of others.
Supt Williams: do you know whether the licence has been in existence since 1822? - No sir I was not there then (Laughter)


The chairman said the bench decided to renew the licence of the New Tredegar subject to sanitary arrangements being made in a satisfactory manner and at a six-foot brick wall be erected between the house and the cottages at the side.
The licence of the Lamb Inn would also be renewed subject to the carrying out of sanitary improvements.
The Old Tredegar Arms' licence would be referred for compensation

From the South Wales Voice newspaper, 5th February 1927:-


At Ystradgynlais Licensing Session on Thursday, Mr M W Morgan presiding over a full bench, Mr Stanley Alexander Ystalyfera, applied on behalf of Mr Harold David, proprietor, for permission to carry out certain structural alterations to the Old Tredegar Arms Gwys.
In producing the plan Mr Alexander said the main object was for the better superintendence of the business. Chairman: are the alterations suggested at the last brewater sessions provided for?
Mr Alexander replied in the negative. The bar was now at the back of the house and it was intended to do away with the commercial room and cellar and convert it into a bar with all the goods at the rear of the bar. The elevation of the house was to be raised and this would result in a general improvement in the appearance of the premises.
The police having no objection, permission was granted.

Some of the details about pubs in the Swansea Valley and Coelbren were sourced from 'The Village Pub' by William T. Davies,a detailed history of brewing in the Neath and Swansea valleys and the history and heritage of the local pubs of the area. All proceeds from sale of this book go towards Ystradgynlais Community Hospital. Published by Dinewfr Press, copies of the book can be ordered either by telephoning them on 01269-850576 or emailing the author direct on WilliamTD@yahoo.co.uk.

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Valley Boys in the Great War

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