Researching the Mining History of the Upper Swansea Valley – Maesydderwen School, Ystradgynlais

To request a project outputs, including school packs and templates, research materials and DVDs of the play, please email Kate Spiller, Connected Communities Project

Project Summary

Maesydderwen School in Ystradgynlais have been researching the history of coalmining in the locality in the mid Nineteenth and early Twentieth centuries, exploring the industrial, cultural and social heritage, including notable local figures.

The project involved the children visiting local archives and museums to learn about mining in their community. They have found out what it was like to live in the local mining communities including coping with mining dangers and disasters.

Workshops have been held at the school where the children have listened to talks by Swansea University academics and local people, including ex-miners, to learn more about the community’s past.

The children have been assisted by Swansea University researchers and student volunteers who have been gathering archive and anecdotal evidence to produce a play which was performed in the school and advertised for the locality to attend. The play was a huge success (read more here) with a packed house 2 nights in a row!

The Swansea University team are continuing to work with Ysgol Maesydderwen to upload the play onto the school’s website and Youtube. A template is also being designed to inspire other schools to follow this formula and create similar projects and output for themselves.

The templates for schools and a copy of the play has been placed in South Wales Miners Library and the Central Library, Swansea.

For further information on the Maesydderwen School project please contact Jill Lord, Project Manager: or Kate Spiller, Connected Communities Project

The Mesydderwen School project in the news:

Article on the community workshop held at the school:

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