Fforestfach Cross in 1930's

The Fforestfach History Website

Work - Collieries

These Collieries are not all necessarily in Fforestfach, but they were probably worked by the men of the village.

Colliery Dates & O.S. Maps Basic Facts & The Cambrian Newspaper References*
Cape   Glasbrook Brother* Ltd. (Thomas Roberts, manager), Cape colliery - Source: 1923 Kellys Directory
Cwmbach In use OS 1868, OS 1884 See Cwmbach page for colliery and brick works with maps and more information. Between Cwmbach Road and south-side of Queensway, Fforestfach.
Garngoch No. 1 1870-1908, re-opened 1913-1952, OS 1884 on

The Garngoch No. 1 Pit, 1.5 miles north-east of Gowerton railway station. 1880 Colliery Explosion: At the time, the mine was being worked with naked lights. 1947 Nationalisation of Garngoch was placed in the National Coal Board's, South Western Division's, No.l (Swansea) Area.

Garngoch No. 2 1886-1921 1886 sinking was terminated at a depth of 360 yards. 1902 It was one mile north-west of the No.l Pit and worked the Six-Feet seam. 1921 It then worked the Five-Feet seam until its closure.
Garngoch No. 31906-1966 The colliery was situated south of Gorseinon Road, Gorseinon, between Garngoch No.2 (west) and Bryn Dafydd Farm (east) on 1936-47 OS map.
Gendros or Charles In use 1872, OS 1879, OS 1884

Land owner Sir Robert Armine Morris (1848-1927). From 1884 the colliery was owned by the Charles Brothers and Davies. The Large tip was cleared 1970's, now Gendros Park off Kingshead Road.

Gwalia In use 1903 (own map) Thomas Richard & Company worked the 4ft seam and 1903 employed 17 men. Near to Garngoch No.1 colliery Garngoch.
Mynydd-bach-y-glo In use OS 1868, OS 1884

The colliery was in use, from at least 1851. The 4 foot seam was abandoned in 1896. There is some debate to how long the colliery was worked after this date. Mynydd bach y glo mine was situated alongside Ystrad Road and the Railway at Waunarlwydd.

Mynydd Newydd 1843-1933, OS1884 The Mine was sunk by Vivian & Company down to the five foot seam at a depth of 130 yards. The colliery was one of few in the World, which had a regular Monday Morning religious service at both underground Chapels. The colliery was finally abandoned due to flooding in June 1933, the Drift below was opened the same year.
Mynydd Newydd Drift In use OS 1936-1947 The Mynydd Newydd Drift at Cadle was then opened in 1933 by W. Craven Llewellyn, after the Mynydd Newydd Pit at Penlan was closed. The most productive years 1937-1955.
Redhead In use OS 1868, 1884 Pit, worked the four foot. The mine abandoned the Welsh seam in Dec 1926. Named after Septimus Redhead he was the Duke of Beaufort’s steward. The mine was situated south of the junction of Carmarthen Road and Pontadulais Road.
Talyfrawe 1893 - 1897 This was a small mine worked the 3ft seam owned by Daniel Mainwaring and Company.
Pwll Sant or Saint's Pit In use 1879 - Old mine O/S 1900 Cambrain 17th Jan.1879: Pwll Saint Colliery, Fforest Fach: 300 Hands resumed work after strike over wage cut.
Tirdonkin 1901-1928

In 1901 an opening ceremony to mark the sinking of Tirdonkin colliery, behind Tirdwncyn Farm. The son and youngest daughter of Sir John Dillwyn Llewelyn. Captain Charles Llewelyn and Gladys cut the 1st sods of the two mine shafts (upcast & downcast).

In 1928 there were over 700 men employed, when the closure of near by Callands Pit left it Tirdonkin vulnerable to flooding.

Weig Fach or Wig Fach In use OS 1868, 1884 Cambrian J21 20th June 1856 Weigfach Colliery & Cwmbach Colliery near Swansea: Plant for sale. Explosion March 1877 where19 colliers lost their lives. Also see Worcester for Cambrian result of 1877 explosion, and for other collieries.
Wig In use OS 1868, 1884 Off Middle Road near Gendros Crescent Cross.
Wig-fawr, Cockett OS 1884?, In use OS 1899 At a southly point between St. Peters Cockett and the Travellers Well Cwmdu.
Worcester 1845-?, OS 1884

Between 1865 and 70 it was owned by Thomas Glassbrook, they worked the Swansea Five-Feet seam at a depth of 100 yards. This colliery was worked in conjunction with the Weig Fach Colliery and Pwll Sant or "Saint's Pit."On the 8th of March 1877 an unfortunate explosion which killed nineteen of the forty men working underground. Cambrian F56 March 09th 1877 19 killed in Explosion at Worcester New Coal Pit, Fforest fach near Swansea, managed by Thomas Glasbrook. P8.


A famous quote:


"The working classes', wrote John Glasbrook in 1870, 'have too much knowledge already; it was much easier to manage them twenty years ago;

the more education people get, the more difficult they are to manage."


He was oposing the public library in Swansea.

John Glasbrook was a successful colliery owner b.1816 - d.1887

Swansea an Illustrated History, Glanmor Williams (edited),1990 p167





*The Cambrian was the first English-language newspaper to be published in Wales, from 1804-1930.