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Tonyrefail is a village and community in the Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough, Wales. It is situated at the head of the River Ely; 4 miles (6.4 km) northwest of Llantrisant, about 1.5 miles (2.4 km) from Trebanog and about 2 miles (3.2 km) from Williamstown. During the second half of the 19th century, when coal and steel became synonymous with the South Wales Valleys, Tonyrefail evolved from being a rural hamlet to an industrial village. The population at the 2001 census was 11,035.
Tonyrefail derives from the Welsh Ton yr Efail meaning the forge on the meadow (lea). From ton, meaning lea or grassland and efail meaning forge.
Tonyrefail was a dairy farming and livestock raising area, and many early farmhouses still exist today.This was in stark contrast to the nearby valleys, that were forced to adopt arable and sheep farming activities due to their hilly geography. Early industrialisation began in the late 18th century around a corn mill and woollen factory, but it wasn't until deep coal mining began that employment grew on a large scale. At its peak Coedely Colliery employed nearly 1,800 men which not only changed the face of Tonyrefail, but also created the establishment of nearby colliery settlements such as Coedely and Bryngolau. It was once a busy town in its own right as well as serving the communities of Coedely, Trebanog and Gilfach Goch.
It is widely believed that King Edward II was captured by forces loyal to Queen Isabella near Tonyrefail in 1326.
One of the most notable buildings in Tonyrefail is Collenna House, a three-story mansion originally built in 1093, which overlooks the village. The house is believed to have been built by the Welsh noble, Einion ap Collwyn who after a dispute with Iestyn ab Gwrgant, married Iestyn's only daughter, Nest. The two are said to have set up home at Collenna House and it was around this time that they founded the old church of St. John.Collenna House would eventually become home to the Prichard family, who trace their line back to the house's original Norman occupants. One of the more notable members of the Prichard family, who would eventually die at Collenna house, was Reverend Richard Prichard, Vicar of Llandaff. His son, John Prichard was a renowned Welsh architect who was responsible for restoration work at Llandaff Cathedral and many other local churches. To the southwest is Mynydd Maendy, a hill top which contains a wind farm; the admin offices are situated in Tonyrefail. During May 2013 the listed Savoy Theatre, situated on Collenna Road, received permission from Rhondda Cynon Taff County Borough Council's Development Control Committee to re-open, having been closed for some 10 years before.
Maerdy is a village and community in the county borough of Rhondda Cynon Taf, and within the historic county boundaries of Glamorgan, Wales, lying at the head of the Rhondda Fach Valley.
Treorchy is a village and community in Wales. Once a town, it retains the characteristics of a town. Situated in the county borough of Rhondda Cynon Taf in the Rhondda Fawr valley. Treorchy is also one of the 16 communities of the Rhondda. It includes the villages of Cwmparc and Ynyswen.
Tonypandy is a town and community located in the county borough of Rhondda Cynon Taf, within the historic county boundaries of Glamorgan, Wales, lying in the Rhondda Fawr Valley. A former industrial coal mining town, today Tonypandy is best known as the site of the 1910 Tonypandy riots.
Llwynypia is a village and community in Rhondda Cynon Taf, Wales, near Tonypandy in the Rhondda Fawr Valley. Before 1850 a lightly populated rural farming area, Llwynypia experienced a population boom between 1860 and 1920 with the sinking of several coal mines after the discovery of large coal deposits throughout the Rhondda Valleys.
Ynyshir is a village and community located in the Rhondda Valley, within Rhondda Cynon Taf, South Wales. Ynyshir is pronounced (ənɪs-hiːr) according to the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA), and means "long island" in Welsh. The village takes its name from a farm in the area, falling within the historic parishes of Ystradyfodwg and Llanwynno (Llanwonno). The community of Ynyshir lies between the small adjoining village of Wattstown and the larger town of neighbouring Porth.
Ferndale is a small town located in the Rhondda Valley in the county borough of Rhondda Cynon Taf, Wales. Neighbouring villages are Blaenllechau, Maerdy and Tylorstown. Ferndale was industrialised in the mid-19th century. The first coal mine shaft was sunk in 1857 and was the first community to be intensively industrialised in the Rhondda Valley.
Beddau is a large former mining village situated within the South Wales Valleys around 1.5 miles (2.4 km) from Llantrisant and 4 miles (6.4 km) from the larger town of Pontypridd in the county borough of Rhondda Cynon Taf, South Wales.
Treherbert is a village and community situated at the head of the Rhondda Fawr valley in the county borough of Rhondda Cynon Taf, Wales. Historically part of Glamorgan, Treherbert is a former industrial coal mining village which was at its economic peak between 1850 and 1920. Treherbert is the upper most community of the Rhondda Fawr and encompasses the districts of Blaencwm, Blaenrhondda, Tynewydd and Pen-yr-englyn.
Ystrad is a village and community in the Rhondda Fawr valley, Rhondda Cynon Taf, Wales.
Ton Pentre is a village in the Rhondda Valley in the county borough of Rhondda Cynon Taf, Wales. Historically part of Glamorgan, Ton Pentre, a former industrial coal mining village, is a district of the community of Pentre. The old district of Ystradyfodwg was named after the church at Ton Pentre. Ton Pentre is, perhaps, best known for an event in 1924, when the Duke of York played a round of golf with Trade Unionist Frank Hodges.
Trebanog is a village in the Cymmer electoral ward lying on the southernmost outskirts of the Rhondda Valley, Rhondda Cynon Taf, Wales, located off the A4233 road between Porth and the town of Tonyrefail. Trebanog is an outlying district of the community of Cymmer, and is neighboured by the settlement of Edmondstown. The area has been described as being on "high ground that seals off the Rhondda from the Vale of Glamorgan". Historically it was a mining village, and was home to the Trebanog Working Men's Club and Institute.
Llantwit Fardre is a large village and community situated on the A473, Pontypridd to Bridgend, road near the Welsh towns of Pontypridd and Llantrisant. Llantwit Fardre is also the name of the old parish and the community area that takes in the villages of Llantwit Fardre, Tonteg and Church Village. It is in the county of Rhondda Cynon Taf.
Gilfach Goch is a community, electoral ward and small former coal mining village in the Borough of Rhondda Cynon Taf, south Wales, near the larger community of Tonyrefail. It is situated in the Cwm Ogwr Fach between the Cwm Ogwr Fawr to the west and the Cwm Rhondda to the east.
Church Village is a large village in the historic parish and community of Llantwit Fardre, located within the Taff Ely district of the County Borough of Rhondda Cynon Taf in Wales. The village is centrally located being around 4 miles from the local principal towns of Llantrisant to the southwest and Pontypridd to the north and is situated around 10 miles northwest of Cardiff city centre.
Cilfynydd is a village in the county borough of Rhondda Cynon Taf, Wales, a mile from the South Wales Valleys town of Pontypridd, and 13 miles north of the capital city, Cardiff. Cilfynydd is also an electoral ward for the county council and Pontypridd Town Council.
Penygraig is a village and community in the Rhondda Valley in the county borough of Rhondda Cynon Taf, Wales. As a community Penygraig contains the neighbouring districts of Dinas, Edmondstown, Penrhiwfer and Williamstown. Penygraig is within the historic county boundaries of Glamorgan. The name Penygraig is Welsh for 'head of the rock'.
Pentre is a village, community and electoral ward near Treorchy in the Rhondda valley, falling within the county borough of Rhondda Cynon Taf, Wales. The village's name is taken from the Welsh word Pentref, which translates as homestead, though Pentre is named after a large farm that dominated the area before the coming of industrialisation. The community takes in the neighbouring village of Ton Pentre.
Hopkinstown is a small village to the west of Pontypridd town centre in the county borough of Rhondda Cynon Taf, Wales situated alongside the banks of the River Rhondda. Hopkinstown is a former coal mining industrial community and is a district in the town of Pontypridd within the Rhondda electoral ward. It is neighboured by the settlements of Pwllgwaun, Trehafod and Pantygraigwen, and also comprises the subdistricts of Troed-Rhiw-Trwyn and Gyfeillion.
Penrhiwfer is a village located in the County Borough of Rhondda Cynon Taf, Wales.
Mynydd Maendy is a hilltop and moorland, near Gilfach Goch, in the County Borough of Rhondda Cynon Taf in south Wales, to the southwest of Tonyrefail. As with the Maindee district of Newport, the name derives from the Welsh maen dy meaning "stone house".