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Bont Fawr Aqueduct (partly in Cwmavon community)

A Grade II* Listed Building in Pontrhydyfen, Neath Port Talbot

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Coordinates

Latitude: 51.6335 / 51°38'0"N

Longitude: -3.7413 / 3°44'28"W

OS Eastings: 279581

OS Northings: 194184

OS Grid: SS795941

Mapcode National: GBR H5.89NB

Mapcode Global: VH5GW.36GK

Entry Name: Bont Fawr Aqueduct (partly in Cwmavon community)

Listing Date: 6 March 2000

Last Amended: 6 March 2000

Grade: II*

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 22890

Building Class: Industrial

Location: Prominently located in Pontrhydyfen spanning the Afan valley.

County: Neath Port Talbot

Community: Pelenna

Community: Pelenna

Locality: Pontrhydyfen

Built-Up Area: Pontrhydyfen

Traditional County: Glamorgan

Find accommodation in
Port Talbot

History

Built 1824-7 by the ironmaster John Reynolds to supply waterwheels at the Oakwood Ironworks. The ironworks was part of the expansion of the iron industry into the western part of the South Wales coalfield from the 1820s, but the considerable investment in outmoded water power, and the lack of knowledge it implies, was symptomatic of the early failure of the works. Little production is recorded for the furnaces, which were sold c1840 to the Governor & Company of Copper Miners. Thereafter the aqueduct appears no longer to have supplied water to the works. Small boats are also said to have used the aqueduct but after 1841 a railway was laid across the deck. The deck subsequently carried a minor road, which is now a public footpath closed to vehicles.

Exterior

A large 4-bay aqueduct of rubble stone with tooled dressings. Elliptical arches are carried on wider tapering piers, the tops of which have stepped stone courses against the arch spandrels. The abutments have similar details to the piers. A continuous band is below the later parapet, which has blue-brick saddleback copings and is splayed out at the ends. The deck is laid with tarmac.

Reasons for Listing

Listed grade II*, Bont Fawr Aqueduct is one of the few surviving structures related to the use of water power in the iron industry of the region and is among the finest surviving works of civil engineering in early C19 Wales.

Scheduled Ancient Monument Gm 393 (NEP).

Recommended Books

Other nearby listed buildings

  • II* Bont Fawr Aqueduct (partly in Pelenna Community)
    Prominently located spanning the Afan valley, to the N of Aqueduct Terrace.
  • II Jerusalem Chapel
    Prominently sited in the centre of Pontrhydyfen, sited high above the main B4287 through the village.
  • II Bethel Chapel
    The chapel faces E at the corner of Aqueduct Terrace. Set within a rubble stone enclosure wall with square gate piers to entrance, iron gates and flanking railings.
  • II Pontrhydyfen Viaduct
    Long viaduct spanning the Afan valley where the river curves round towards the S, and the road which leads from Cwmavon to Pontrhydyfen.

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