History in Structure

Newbridge Chainworks Canal Basin on the Glamorganshire Canal

A Grade II Listed Building in Pontypridd, Rhondda Cynon Taff

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Latitude: 51.6023 / 51°36'8"N

Longitude: -3.3307 / 3°19'50"W

OS Eastings: 307933

OS Northings: 190109

OS Grid: ST079901

Mapcode National: GBR HQ.BBWV

Mapcode Global: VH6DK.7Z1L

Plus Code: 9C3RJM29+WP

Entry Name: Newbridge Chainworks Canal Basin on the Glamorganshire Canal

Listing Date: 26 February 2001

Last Amended: 26 February 2001

Grade: II

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 24855

Building Class: Transport

ID on this website: 300024855

Location: On the S side of Ynysangharad Road and to the rear of the Bunch of Grapes public house.

County: Rhondda Cynon Taff

Town: Pontypridd

Community: Pontypridd

Community: Pontypridd

Locality: Pentrebach

Built-Up Area: Pontypridd

Traditional County: Glamorgan

Tagged with: Canal basin

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The Glamorganshire Canal Act was passed in 1790 and the canal opened in 1794 from Merthyr Tydfil to Cardiff, primarily to serve the growing output of the ironworks at Merthyr Tydfil. Its engineers were Thomas Dadford and Thomas Sheasby. The steep gradient between Merthyr and Cardiff - a fall of 165.5m in 40.2km - was overcome by erecting 51 locks, instead of the inclined planes favoured on other canals. These included a triple lock at Nantgarw (which has not survived) and the double lock at Pontypridd. The rapid growth in output of iron soon led to congestion on the canal, however, but the large volume of trade from the ironworks ensured that the canal survived the opening of the Taff Vale Railway in 1841. Traffic declined sharply when the ironworks declined in the late C19 and coal companies preferred rail transport. The upper section N of Pontypridd was almost disused by the late C19, but the section between Nantgarw and Pontypridd did not close until a breach at Nantgarw in 1942.

The canal basin was created probably in the mid C19 specifically to serve the nearby Newbridge Chainworks, as it is not shown on the 1841 Eglwysilan Tithe map.


A canal basin of snecked rubble walls and flat dressed copings, oriented roughly N-S. The basin opens out on both sides. On the W side the level of the towpath descends gradually from N-S. The S end has later concrete slab copings, while the towpath is laid with later concrete. An outflow culvert near the N end has a dressed stone surround, immediately S of which is a butt joint defining the widening of the original canal to create the basin. On the E side the wall is visible only on the northern half of the basin, as a later retaining wall is built over the remainder. The E wall is clearly of 2 phases as an earlier coping course is visible in the wall below the present coping level.

Reasons for Listing

Listed for industrial archaeological interest as one of the relatively few surviving features on the Glamorganshire Canal and for group value with the adjacent canal bridge and Locks 31 & 32.

External Links

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