Pyle - From 'A Topographical Dictionary of Wales' (1849)
PYLE, with Kenvig, a parish, in the poor-law union of Bridgend and Cowbridge, hundred of Newcastle, county of Glamorgan, South Wales, 11� miles (S. S. E.) from Neath; containing, exclusively of Kenvig, 803 inhabitants. It was originally a chapelry attached to the parish of Kenvig, but since the devastation of that town and the destruction of its church by an inundation of the sea, as noticed in the article thereon, the parishes have been united, the livings consolidated into one vicarage, and the chapel of Pyle has become the parochial church. The two places are nearly of equal extent. Through Pyle now runs the turnpike-road from Cardiff to Swansea, which formerly passed through Kenvig, but was diverted from its original course after the devastation of the borough. Pyle is also intersected by the Llynvi railway, which is crossed in this vicinity by the great South Wales line. The village, though small, has a neat and pleasing appearance, and contains a commodious inn erected by the late Mr. Talbot. Near the church, on the estate of C. R. M. Talbot, Esq., is a quarry of excellent buildingstone, from which the material employed in the erection of the spacious mansion in Margam Park, belonging to Mr. Talbot, was taken.
The Pyle iron-works are situated about one mile north-east of the village, within the limits of the parish, and consist of two blast-furnaces, &c. They were established by a joint-stock company in the year 1830, and, after having been in operation about six months, were discontinued, the blast-engine and plant were sold, and the works were taken possession of by a gentleman named Ford, who holds a mortgage on the property. Mr. Ford has continued to work the coal, large quantities of which are sent to the harbour of Porthcawl for exportation, and also to the town of Bridgend, where Mr. Ford has a yard; while a considerable quantity is manufactured into coke, there being a brisk demand for that article. The South Wales line of railway, from its proximity to the works, will materially enhance the value of the property. On the south-east side of the works, a large number of workmen's cottages have been built, with a few houses of a better description for shops and public-houses, forming together the village of Mynydd-Kenvig, partly in the parish of Pyle, and partly in the Upper hamlet of Tythegston. From the village of Pyle to the Cevn Cwsc works, a distance of about two miles, where, a comparatively few years ago, only a solitary farmhouse here and there met the eye, every eligible spot is now occupied by a tenement, and the busy hum of traffic is heard throughout this once quiet neighbourhood.
The living is noticed under the head of Kenvig. The church, dedicated to St. James the Apostle, is a handsome structure, appropriately fitted up. There is a place of worship for Calvinistic Methodists, with a Sunday school held in it. John Waters in 1515 left �20, and Thomas Loughor, in 1744, �50, which sums with other money have been invested in the purchase of land producing �8. 4. 11. per annum, distributed at Christmas among the poor. Near the church is a spring called Collwyn Well, the water of which has been long celebrated for its medicinal properties. In the year 1832, an inscribed stone was discovered not far from the church, in taking down the walls of an old pound: it lay in a ditch close by, until Mr. G. G. Francis, of Swansea, rescued it from destruction, and deposited it among the antiquities in the Royal Institution at Swansea, in 1835. Pyle lies upon the Roman Via Julia Maritima; the inscription on the stone is Roman, and runs IMP. MC. PIAVONIO. VICTORINO. AVG., referring to Victorinus, one of the thirty tyrants. Some coins of the same emperor have been found in the county.