If I could ask my grandfather about Hafodyrynys, I have no doubt that he would tell me about the local collieries and the railway that ran across the Crumlin viaduct and the hard-working people who made the local industries work and succeed.

Well times have changed and the railway has now gone and the pits have closed but the same people or at least their descendants are still here.

So what about the Hafodyrynys colliery?

It was sited on older workings owned by E.Jones and dating back to 1878. It became fully operatiional in 1914 when it was owned by the Crumlin Valley Collieries. By 1918 there were 574 men employed.

In 1923 there were 924 men employed producing coal from the Meadow Vein, Black Vein and Old Coal Coal seams

In 1945 there were 666 men employed.

At the time of Nationalisation in 1947 the colliery employed 631 men

(5 17 uderground and 114 on the surface).

Hafodyrynys was to become the centre of one of the NCB's first big investments in South Wales - "Hafodyrynys New Mine".

The intention was to link several of the Gwent collieries underground to turn them into a giant drift mine with it's main outlet and processing plant at the new mine in Hafodyrynys.

Millions of pounds were invested creating a new state-of-the-art pit head and washery while conveyor tunnels were excavated to link the workings at Glyntillery, Tirpentwy and Blaenserchan collieries.

It was expected to have 50 years of reserves but after about 10 years it began to have geoligical problems which resulted in the end of coal production at Hafodyrynys in 1966. The cost of maintaining the long underground link from Blaenserchan made the operation inviable and the coal produced at Blaenserchan was switched to Abertillery in 1977 resulting in the final closure of Hafodyrynys.

.[History Continued]