Valley youngsters save their mining heritage

Roedd Dyffryn Ogwr yn cael ei adnabod fel cymuned fwyngloddio ar un adeg
A project telling the story of a South Wales valley’s mining heritage has been awarded £49,700 by the National Lottery.

The Ogmore Valley was once well known as a mining community, with most of the area’s families making a living from the extensive coal mines that stretched across the South Wales valleys.

With this funding, the Boys and Girls Clubs of Wales (BGC Wales) will work with young people and the local community to preserve the history of the region’s bygone mining era through the creation of an Ogmore Valley Heritage Trail and Heritage Hub.

The Heritage Hub will be located at Nantymoel’s renovated Boys and Girls Club and Community Centre, where local artefacts will be preserved and displayed, while another nearby site will also play host to a heritage art installation.

From Bryngarw Country Park to Nantymoel

The Heritage Trail will be based on the existing cycle route that travels through the Ogmore Valley from Bryngarw Country Park to Nantymoel. Information boards will be installed along the trail, painting a picture of how the scenery would have looked during the mining era and showing places of local interest.

Volunteers will also conduct guided tours along the trail, or visitors can take history into their own hands by using a brand new mobile app to guide themselves and learn more about the area’s heritage.

Inspiration for the project came as the youth group realised that their local history may soon be forgotten, as only older Ogmore residents had worked at the mines – something that is especially close to BGC Wales’s heart, as the club was originally formed for the sons of miners in South Wales in the 1920s.

Now, 60 local volunteers will work on the project to preserve the heritage of the area for many years to come, learning skills such as tourism ambassador training and public speaking along the way to help them promote the rich industrial history of this South Wales valley. 

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