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Railways and Industry in the Tondu Valleys (Hardback)

Bridgend to Treherbert

Local History Transport Photographic Books Colour Books Trains and Railways Wales

By Stuart Davies, John Hodge
Imprint: Pen & Sword Transport
Series: South Wales Valleys
Pages: 260
ISBN: 9781526727251
Published: 30th September 2019

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The book begins with a history of the industrial development of the Tondu Valleys, including the succession of great industrialists who led the way in the area. This is followed by a chapter on the position of the Tondu Valleys in the South Wales Coalfield with colliery and colliery company details. Railway passenger services are next covered, followed by railway coal services. Then follows a detailed account of the sole railway depot which covered all the operations in the Tondu Valleys. A location specific account then follows of Llynfi Valley detailing both railway and colliery aspects, following the line from Bridgend, through Tondu, and all locations to Cymmer Afan and on to the original terminus at Abergwynfi, then from Blaengwynfi through the Rhondda Tunnel to Treherbert. The north end of the South Wales Mineral Railway became an adjunct to the Tondu Valley with the closure of the former Rhondda & Swansea Bay line and this is also included in similar detail. The closure of the passenger service in 1970 and renaissance of a new service from Maesteg to Cardiff in 1992 concludes the account. Detailed Appendices of operating statistics completes this very comprehensive account.

The book is the fullest account ever produced of this part of the South Wales scene and is a must for anyone interested in either the railway or mining activities (or both) in this part of South Wales.

A further volume covering the Ogmore & Garw Valleys (and associated lines) and the Porthcawl branch will appear soon.

A very complete study.

Read the full review here

Miniaturas JM

As featured in

Great Western Society

As featured in

Friends of the National Railway Museum

As featured in

Great Western Society

As featured in

Friends of the National Railway Museum

This book describes each valley including the Llynfi, Garw, Ogmore and Cymmer Afan, even reaching to Glyncorrwg. Photographs are excellent and presented with informative captions.
As local men with considerable railway management experience they were able to bring both to good use writing this book.

Welsh Railways Research Circle

Detailed Appendices of operating statistics completes this very comprehensive account, making "Railways and Industry in the Tondu Valleys: Bridgend to Treherbert" the fullest illustrated account ever produced of this part of the South Wales scene and is a must for all British railway history buffs interested in either the railway or mining activities (or both) in this part of South Wales. While very highly recommended for personal, community, and academic library British Railway History collections and supplemental studies reading lists.

Read the full review here

Midwest Book Review

In fact, the whole production is excellent; the book having a real 'quality' feel to it. Of course, anyone seeking information for making models of the area will find it invaluable.

BRM, January 2020 – reviewed by Tony Wright

About Stuart Davies

Stuart Davies is a native of the Ogmore Valley and spent much of his formative years observing the operations at Tondu depot and its associated railway environs. This inspired him to pursue a railway career based initially in South Wales, then Carlisle, Bristol, East Anglia and the West Midlands, finally becoming a Senior Operations Executive. On the privatisation of British Railways, he participated in a number of successful bids for train operating companies. Recording in detail the railway activities around the Tondu Valleys has been a long-held ambition, now realised in this work.


About John Hodge

The author is a former railway manager in South Wales during the 1960s, who since retirement in 1992 has produced many articles and books on South Wales railways.

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