The industrial heritage of this area goes back to 1584, when copper was first manufactured. Iron smelting and corn milling followed, with a tin plate works being built around 1830. As well as powering industries for over 400 years, this magnificent waterfall inspired artist J M W Turner in 1795. Today, the site houses Europe’s largest electricity-generating water wheel.
There are two sections of the canal for visitors to enjoy. Experience working lock gates, tree-lined routes and a quaint coffee shop as you navigate this romantic example of industrial revolution ingenuity, made famous by the novelist Alexander Cordell in his book ‘Song of the Earth’.
Founded in 1130 by the Norman Baron, Richard de Granville and described as the 'Fairest Abbey in all Wales' by Tudor Historian John Leland.
Local history groups
The Borough of Neath and Port Talbot has a number of voluntary History and Heritage organisations which work enthusiastically to preserve, research and make available the rich heritage of the area. Below is a list of groups, including contact numbers.
If you know of any other groups in the heritage field which are not listed below please let us know by ringing the Heritage Officer at Neath Reference Library.
|Amman Valley Railway Society||www.avrail.org|
|Brunel Dock Society|
|Cwm Dulais Historical Society||http://cwmdulais.org.uk/wordpress/|
|Dyffryn Clydach and Bryncoch Historical Society||www.spanglefish.com/dyffrynclydachandbryncochhistoricalsociety|
|Friends of Aberdulais Falls|
|Friends of Cefn Coed|
|Friends of Margam Park|
|Friends of Neath Abbey Iron Company|
|Friends of Talbot Memorial Park|
|Glynneath and Cwmgwrach Historical Society|
|The Historical Association, Swansea Branch|
|The Neath Antiquarian Society|
|Neath Railway History Society & GWR Retired Railwaymen|
|Neath & Tennant Canal Trust||www.neath-tennant-canals.org.uk|
|Pontardawe Heritage Centre|
|Port Talbot Historical Society|
|Resolven History Society||http://eclecs.blogspot.com/|
|Skewen & District Industrial Heritage Association|
|Skewen Historical Society||www.skewenhistoricalsociety.org.uk|
|SouthWales Miners Museum|
|Swansea Valley History Society||https://swanseavalleyhistorysociety.org|
|Swansea Canal Society|
|Treftadaeth Brynaman Heritage|
Welsh Transport & Memory Lane Museum
(Transport related museum including vintage cars)