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Neath

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Neath (Welsh: Castell-Nedd) is a town and community with a population of approximately 47,000, located on the river of the same name in the traditional county of Glamorgan, South Wales.

History
Historically Neath was the crossing place of the River Neath and has existed as a settlement since at least Roman times, following the Roman invasion of Britain in the 1st Century AD.

There is evidence of undated settlements on the hills surrounding the town, which were probably Celtic. Human remains of a female were discovered 25 miles away at Pavilland Cave on the Gower Peninsula dated 24,000 BC proving that humans lived in the region during the last Ice Age. Neath was on the southern edge of the ices sheet with the Vale of Neath being a glaciated valley. Vegetation and animal life migrated to the area following the recession of the ice around 15,000 years ago.

The Romans used the name Celt (outsiders) for the unfederated European tribes outside of their empire and the tribes inhabiting the Neath area before Roman times would have been Celtic.

Nidum is the name of the Roman fort discovered close to a housing state, known as Roman Way, on the west side of the River Neath whereas Neath town is on the east side of the river. The fort covered a large area which now lies under the playing fields of Dŵr-y-Felin Comprehensive School.

The Roman occupation of Britain ended in the 5th Century AD and at that time Christianity was spreading from the east. St Illtyd, a prominent Celtic warrior and Celtic saint who became a Christian was a major force in establishing Christianity within Wales having taught St David, the patron saint of Wales.

St Illtyd visited the Neath area and established a settlement in what is now known as Llantwit on the northern edge of the town. The church of St Illtyd was built at this settlement and was enlarged in Norman times. The Norman and pre Norman church structure remains intact and active to day within the Church in Wales.

Neath was a market town that expanded with the arrival of the Industrial Revolution in the 18th Century with new manufacturing industries of iron, steel and tinplate. The Mackworth family, who owned the Gnoll Estate were prominent in the towns industrial development.

Coal was mined in the surrounding valleys and the construction of canals and railways made Neath a major transportation centre and the Evans & Bevan family were major in the local coal mining community and also owned the Vale of Neath Brewery.

The town also continued as a market trading centre with a municipal cattle market run by W.B.Trick.

The River Neath is a navigable estuary with Neath having been a river port until recent times.

Industrial development continued throughout the 20th Century with the construction by British Petroleum of a new petroleum refinery at Llandarcy.

The heavy industries are no more with the town being a commercial centre and tourist attraction.

The Welsh name for Neath is Castell Nedd, which refers to the Norman Neath Castle, which is close to the shopping centre.

Other major attractions for visitors are the ruins of the Cistercian Neath Abbey and the Gnoll Park.

Administration
The previous borough council was absorbed into the larger unitary authority of Neath Port Talbot on April 1, 1996. The town encompasses the electoral wards of Neath East, Neath North and Neath South.

The Town and the surrounding area is represented at Westminster by Peter Hain MP (Labour) and in the National Assembly for Wales by Gwenda Thomas AM (Labour)

Trivia

  • The Welsh Rugby Union was formed at a meeting held at the Castle Hotel.
  • Neath Rugby Football Club, the famous "Welsh All Blacks", play at The Gnoll.
  • Lord Admiral Nelson stayed at the Castle Hotel en route to Milford Haven when the fleet was at anchor there.
  • Lt Lewis Roatley, the son of the landlord of the Castle Hotel, served as a Royal Marines officer with Lord Admiral Nelson aboard HMS Victory for the Battle of Trafalgar.
  • Neath is the native town of some famous Hollywood actors including Anthony Hopkins, Richard Burton and Ray Milland. The international theatre director Michael Bogdanov was born in Neath.
  • The town has produced some talented and successful classical singers and musicians, including Ivor Emmanuel, the international sopranos Rebecca Evans and Gail Pearson, classical singer Katherine Jenkins, the rock singer Bonnie Tyler and classical pianists Gordon Back and Andrew Matthews-Owen.
  • Neath hosted the National Eisteddfod in 1918, 1934, and 1994.
  • Craig Y Nos, which is a village close to Neath, was chosen by the famous opera singer Adelina Patti to live. She constructed Craig Y Nos Castle as her home; it includes a miniature opera house where she entertained her house guests. Craig Y Nos was the first place to have electricity installed in Wales.
  • In a 1993 edition of FHM The Parade, Neath was infamously named the second most likely place in the UK to encounter a fight on a Friday night.
  • In April 1980, it was reported that thousands of fresh garden peas pelted down in Tonna (Neath) over a man called Trevor Williams in some freakish weather phenomenon.
     

 Rugby: Neath Athletic RFC
 Rugby: Neath RFC

 Trains: Neath is on the South Wales Main Line

 Football: Llansawel AFC
 Football: Neath Athletic FC

 Golf:
 Gnoll Estate Golf Course
       Gnoll Estate
       Fairyland
       Neath
       Neath Port Talbot
       SA11 3BS
       01639 635808

 Libraries:
 Neath Library
       Victoria Gardens
       Neath
       SA11 3BA
       01639 644604/635017
       Mon 9.30am-6.00pm
       Tue 9.30am-6.00pm
       Wed 9.30am-6.00pm
       Thur 9.30am-5.00pm
       Fri 9.30am-7.00pm
       Sat 9.30am-1.00pm

 Vets:
 St James Veterinary Group
       35a Lewis Rd
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1DJ
       01639 638638

 Pubs/Bars:
 Ambassador Hotel
       The Parade
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1RA

 Angel Inn
       Angel Street
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1RS
       01639 632658

 The Big Cam
       9 Windsor Road
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1LS

 The Borough Arms
       2 New Henry Street
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1PH
       01639 644902

 Britannia Inn
       18 Bethel Street
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 2HQ

 Bryncoch Inn
       Tyn Yr Heol Road
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA10 7EB
       01639 634921

 The Builders Arms
       Old Road
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 2ET

 Cambrian Arms
       94 Briton Ferry Road
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1AP
       01639 643303

 The Canterbury
       30 Orchard Street
       Neath
       Neath Port Talbot
       SA11 1DU
       01639 642210

 The Castle Hotel
       The Parade
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1RB

 Cimla Hotel
       Cimla Road
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 3UG

 Cross Keys Hotel
       1A St Davids Street
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 3AA
       01639 643927

 Dark Arch Inn
       Commercial Street
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1SB
       01639 632580

 David Prothero
       7 Windsor Road
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1LS

 The Duffryn
       58 Main Road
       Dyffryn Cellwen
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA10 9LA

 The Duke Of Wellington
       8 Old Market Street
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 3NA
       0163 9643892

 Eaglebush Inn
       Briton Ferry Road
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1AS

 Ebenecers Riley's Station House
       9 Windsor Road
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1LS
       01639 630215

 The Exeter Inn
       52 Briton Ferry Road
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1AP
       01639 769252

 Full Moon
       22 The Parade
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1RA
       01639 642148

 Glyn Clydach Hotel
       Glynclydach Bungalow Longford
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA10 7AJ
 

 Taxis:
 ABC Taxis
       1 Charlesville Place
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1PY
       01639 644166

 Abbey Cabs
       33 Longford Rd
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA10 7ET
       01792 813587

 Alex Eagle Taxis
       34 Queens St
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1DL
       01639 643121

 Central Cabs
       40 London Rd
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1LE
       01639 642457

 Gnoll Park Motel
       77 Cimla Road
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 3TT

 Grandison Hotel
       175 Pant Yr Heol
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 2HB
       01639 643595

 The Greyhound
       11 Water Street
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 3EP
       01639 637793

 Hop 'n' Apple
       Bush Row
       Neath
       Neath Port Talbot
       SA11 2EB
       01639 639905

 The Kasbar
       1 Commercial Street
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1SB
       01639 641593

 The King Edward VII
       110 London Road
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1HL
       01639 769232

 Market Tavern
       Charlesville Place
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1PY

 Market Tavern
       Charlesville Place
       Neath
       Neath Port Talbot
       SA11 1PY
       01639 634911

 Melin Manor Hotel
       Old Road
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 2BN

 Mustang Sallys
       41 Windsor Road
       Neath
       Neath Port Talbot
       SA11 1NG
       01639 760400

 Oxford Arms
       104 Windsor Road
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1NG
       01639 643404

 The Pennsylvania
       Briton Ferry Road
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1AR
       01639 645000

 Puddlers Arms
       Shelone Road
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 2PS
       01639 812265

 Queens Hotel
       30 Orchard Street
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1DU

 Rose & Crown Inn
       21 Bethel Street
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 2EZ
       01639 821700

 Royal Exchange Inn
       109 Britton Ferry Road
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1AS
       01639 636688

 Scholars
       44 The Parade
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1RN
       01639 643733

 Ship Tavern
       Regent Street East
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 2RU
       01639 813411

 The Sportsman
       11 Commercial Street
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1SB
       01639 645593

 St Ives Inn
       12 Old Market Street
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 3NA

 The Tudor Inn
       Cae Rhys Ddu Road
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1JA
       01639 642769

 The Tunnel Tavern
       1 Commercial Street
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1SB

 Davey's & Amber Taxis
       87 Windsor Rd
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1NS
       01639 642181

 Granada Taxis
       1a Charlesville Place
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1PY
       01639 643255

 Tower Taxis
       1 Charlesville Place
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA11 1PY
       01639 645588

 B&B's/Guesthouses
 Cwmbach Cottages Guest House
       Cwmbach Road
       Neath
       Neath Port Talbot
       SA10 8AH 
 01639 639825
 [email protected]
 http://www.cwmbachcottages.co.uk

 Campsites/Carvan Parks
 Ty Canol Farm Camping
       Penyard Road
       Neath Abbey
       Neath
       West Glamorgan
       SA10 7EY
 01792 814172


 

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This Month

May 3rd

Mary Hopkin (Singer) born 1950 in Pontardawe

May 11th

Ivor Emmanuel (acto) was born in Pontrhydyfen, nr. Port Talbot in 1927

May 14th

Robert Owen, Welsh social reformer born 1771 in Newtown

May 28th

Clough Williams-Ellis (architect) born 1883