The lost names of Brynmawr
When I began looking at the old Street and Building Names of Brynmawr and trying to find out how or why they had been so named I became aware that many had disappeared, either through lack of use or possibly because the terrace or street had been demolished. It became quite a task to find out where many once stood; many hours of pouring over old maps looking for clues. Of course, the more I looked, the more (now missing) names would be found. The old “Board School” record book was another treasure trove of interesting names. The town once had quite a few wall plaques with the terrace name on them such as “Eddie’s Terrace” or “Lewis Terrace“. Over the years as houses were re-rendered many of the plaques have disappeared and with them, part of the town’s heritage. One terrace even had a small statue of a lion on a chimney, (this was in Bailey Street) but it vanished as the roof was repaired and all I now have is a photograph. Edwin Jones and I had always felt that the building might once have been used as a Synagogue, (the street was often referred to as Jew’s Row) and the lion could very well have been “The Lion Of Judah“. Another problem I came across were streets being re-named. Intermediate Road was also called County School Road and occasionally as The Cymro Road or even the “Cymro Engine Road“. Interestingly enough, talking to a gentleman who was born in Llanelly Hill but now lives in Birmingham, he referred to it as The Cymro Road and it‘s also referred to thus in an early directory. The “Cymro” in question was the engine that Crawshay Bailey owned, used to pull the trams of iron bars across to the incline above Llangattock and to bring limestone back from the many quarries found along the Hafod Road.
Fearing that these names will be forgotten and lost for ever I started keeping a list, part of which is printed below. Not all the names I found are on the list and I must admit that some are just outside the town but I hope you have as much fun trying to work out where they all were as I did in finding them.
Army Houses, Bailey Sidings, Bailey Terrace, Beaufort Buildings,
Beaufort Gate, Belgium House, Blewett Square, Bloor’s Court, Brewery House,
Bryn Terrace, Bryn View, Bull’s Gully, Camel’s Hump, Church House, Church Terrace,
Clarence Yard, Clydach Bridge, Clydach Buildings, Coal Yard, Coaltar Houses, Cosy Place,
County School Road, Crescent Place, Dormer Place, Eddie’s Place,
Eddie’s Terrace, Edgar Place (Buildings), Esther Buildings, Fairview,
Ford’s Lodging House, Foundry Houses, Glamorgan Square,
Gordon Terrace, Greenland Row, Griffin Mews, Griffin Yard,
Heathcock Houses, Hillside Cottages, Hitchman Court, Joby’s Pitch,
John Thomas Row, Jubilee Terrace, Lee’s Yard, Lewis Terrace,
Llangattock Road, Miles Row, Millet’s Terrace, Morgan’s Square,
Morgan’s Yard, Newtown, Noble Square, Old Police Station, Orchard Court,
Pant y Bicwn, Pont Harry Isaac, Post Office Lane, Prince Place, Prospect Place,
Rhydw Tump, Robert’s Terrace, Salvation Army Gully, Slam Gate, Stalybridge Terrace,
Cosy Cinema, The Heathcock Rest, The Lane, The Patches, The Skating Rink, The Town Hall,
Tinker’s Row, Twyn Blaen Nant, Victoria Buildings, Waen Helygen, Well Villa,
Whitehouse Falls, Woodbine Cottages, Worcester Building,
Worcester Street West, Worthing House
Even today, names are disappearing, the deeds to my house quite clearly give the name of the terrace but certain organisations have refused to acknowledge the name; Prospect Place, what a lovely name, became Sunnybank Court. What was once Frog’s Hole or Pant y Bicwn to give its original name has been renamed Vale View. Should this be allowed as it takes away part of our heritage?
Eifion Lloyd Davies