|Glacial ice sheet
as far south as Abergavenny. Gwent would have been
bitterly cold tundra. Sea level dropped by 200 feet - Bristol Channel was
mainly dry land. Land Bridge connected Britain to the Continent.
|Local tribes migrate from the
Gwent levels to the uplands - including Mynydd
Maen (Twmbarlwm) , Mynydd Machen, Mynydd y Grug
|Iron Age Hill Fort
constructed by the Silures (the dominant tribe in South Wales)
|75||Roman fortress established at
Isca Silurum (Caerleon). Only two other
Legionary fortresses existed in Britannia at this time.
|78||Siluria is finally brought under
Roman Miltary control by Sextus Julius Frontinus.
The Romans take 5 years to control the S.E of Britain but take 35 years
to achieve the same level of control in the Silurian territories, known nowadays
as South Wales.
|120||Roman city constructed at Venta Silurum (Caerwent)|
|5th Century||Romans leave Brittania.
Kingdoms of Gwent and Glywysing established.
Gwent - the land between the River Usk and the River Wye
Glywysing - the land between the River Usk and the River Tawe.
The Ebbw & Sirhowy Valleys being situated within the Kingdom of Glywysing
|942||Llywarch ap Cadogan gives Villa
Treficarn Pont (settlement or estate near the
bridge over the Carn ) to Bishop Wulfrith with King Cadell's guarantee
ie the place where the Carn meets the Ebbw (now Cwmcarn).
|1536||Act of Union created the Welsh County of Monmouthshire|
|1576||Charcoal-fired Blast Furnace
built at Abercarn by Edmund Roberts
for smelting iron ore .
|1597||The Society of Mineral and Battery
Works accuses Richard Hanbury
of secretly manufacturing iron at Abercarn, Glenebo (Ebbw) and
Monkswood for the previous 20 years.
|1606 (1607)||The Great Flood. January 20th.
The Bristol Channel floods the Gwent levels of
Wentloog and Caldicot. An inscription on St Bride's Church records the
height of the flood - 5ft 6inches.
|1624||Commencement of registers for Bedwellty|
|1656||Commencement of registers for Mynyddislwyn|
|1736||Commencement of registers of Risca|
|1755||First use of coal for smelting iron instead of charcoal|
|1782||Charcoal wireworks and a pit
coal forge established at Abercarn
by Joshua and Samuel Glover
|1792||The Monmouthshire Canal Navigation
Company was created.
The Canal Navigation Act authorised the construction of a Canal
from the River Usk (Newport) to Pontnewynydd (Pontypool)
and a branch from Crindau Farm (Malpas, Newport) to Crumlin.
The Act also authorised the construction of several tramroads
to link the canal to various iron works.
|1795||Zephaniah Williams born at Gwrhay
near Argoed. Chartist leader involved
in the Newport Uprising on 4th November 1839
|1796||Newport to Pontnewynydd section
of the Monmouthshire Canal
completed (February) 10.5 miles long, 42 locks, 3 tunnels.
Could take barges 64ft by 9ft
|1796||Edward Jones, a Bristol merchant's
clerk, leases land near Risca
for £500 a year from Sir Charles Morgan
|1797||Edward Jones begins to sink
the Waunfawr Colliery near Risca at
Coed Waunfawr on the lower slopes of Mynydd Machen in the Parish
|1799||The population of Newport was 750|
|1799||Crumlin Branch of Monmouthshire Canal completed. 11 miles long , 32 locks (April)|
|1799||Archdeacon Coxe travels through
He describes it in his "Historical Tour of Monmouthshire"
|1801||Parish of Risca population =
240 : Parish of Mynyddislwyn population = 1544
Parish of Machen population = 676
|1802||Canal Act of the 26th June sanctioned
the construction of the
Sirhowy Tramroad. Monmouthshire Canal proprieters to construct a
(dual) tramroad from Newport to a point 9 miles towards the Sirhowy Valley
(between Wattsville and Cwmfelinfach).
Tredegar Iron Company to construct a (single) tramroad from
Nine Mile Point to Tredegar.
Sir Charles Morgan to construct the "Golden Mile" (dual) tramroad
- through his land.
|1804||Colliery at Tonypistill farm
Abercarn. Produced 40 tons of coal a day
from a small shallow level.
|1805||Construction of Halls Road Tramroad
begins. Built by Benjamin Hall.
His son, aslo named Benjamin Hall (later Lord Lanover) was responsible
for the famous clock tower of the Houses of Parliament known as "Big Ben"
|1806||Sirhowy Tramroad completed (Tredegar
Long Bridge Viaduct constructed of stone at Risca - approx 50 feet high
consisting of 33 arches (the largest number built in Wales).
|1807||Union Copper Company constructs a smelting plant at Risca (Danygraig)|
|1808||Iron works at Abercarn sold to Richard Crawshay|
|1809||The beginnings of the Darren Colliery at Risca|
|1810||Iron Works in operation at Pontymister|
|1811||Halls Road tramroad completed
- from a location in what is now called
Crosskeys via Pentwynmawr to Waterloo Colliery in Gwrhay
|1812||Brecknock and Abergavenny Canal
opened and linked to the
|1814||Extension of Hall's Road tramroad to Manmoel level completed.|
|1816||First strike of it's kind. Ironworkers at Tredegar protest at reduction in wages.|
|1822||Desperate battle took place
on the hills of Monmouthshire, on Thursday
the 9th of May between a detachment of the Scotch Greys,
and several thousands of colliers and miners
|1822||First Passenger service intoduced
on Sirhowy Tramroad by John Kingston.
Horse drawn vehicle known as the Caravan.
|1823||Newport becomes the most important coal port in Wales|
|1824||Llanarth and Penllwyn Tramroads
(Lanarth - Blackwood to 9 Mile Point, Penllwyn - Ynysddu to 9 Mile Point)
|1827||Tramroad constructed by Monmouthshire
Canal Co. to link Risca with the
Halls Tramroad at Hall's Road Junction (Crosskeys)
|1829||Monmouthshire Canal Co. completes Tramroad from Risca to Crumlin (Ebbw Valley)|
|1829||First Steam Engine "Brittania"
travels on Sirhowy Tramroad (December 17th)
only two months after the famous Rainhill Trials and the appearance of
|1830||Gwent miners strike in protest against the company "Truck Shops"|
|1832||William Thomas born in Ynysddu - Islwyn the Poet - April 3rd|
|1836||John Frost Mayor of Newport
and Magistrate until 1839. Chartist leader involved
in the Newport Uprising on 4th November 1839
|1836||The Monmouthshire Iron and Coal
Company plan to sink 6 Collieries
in the Abercarn and Cwmcarn districts.
|1836||Waunfawr Colliery purchased
by John Russell and Co. Site covered
over 1000 acres.
The Risca House was included in this purchase and was where John
Russell resided for a time.
|1838||Monmouthshire Merlin publishes
an article claiming " Chartism in Monmouthshire
is now extinct " (2/11/1838)
|1839||Monmouthshire Iron and Coal
Company goes into liquidation.
Only 2 ,of the 6, planned Collieries are completed ie the Abercarn
& Gwyddon Collieries
|1839||Chartist Uprising in Monmouthshire
On November 3rd 1839 seven thousand men from the valleys of Monmouthshire
set out to march on Newport.There were three main contingents
one from Blackwood , one from Ebbw Vale and Nantyglo, and one from Pontypool.
The first two contingents converged at Risca and then pressing on
to the assembly point at the Welsh Oak in Pontymister before
the final advance on Newport.
They were an organized force, armed, angry, and intent on inaugurating
a brave new world.
The rising proved to be the most serious clash between people and government
in modern industrial Britain. In the confrontation between Chartists and troops
in Newport more than twenty men were shot dead,and subsequently more
than 250 people were put on trial for treason.
"British Authorities inflicted greater casualties
on the civilian population than at any other time in the
nineteenth and twentieth centuries" (The Last Rising - D.J.V.Jones)
|1841||Risca population = 1072 : Mynyddislwyn
population = 6000
Machen population = 1577
|1841||John Russel had a new shaft
sunk at the Coed Waunfawr near
(what is now known as) Cross keys.
The beginnings of the new Blackvein Colliery
|1841||Royal Comission reported that
more cases were recorded of the
employment of children in pits in South Wales than anywhere else
|1842||Two Explosions at the Blackvein
Colliery - 2 killed (1st explosion)
-3 killed (2nd explosion)
|1842||Blackvein Colliery obtains contracts
to supply its steam coal to the Royal
West India Steam Packet Company, the Peninsular and Oriental Company
and the East India Company
|1842||Mines Act. Prohibited employment
of girls and boys under 10 to
|1843||Tinplate works erected in Pontymister by T.G. Lewis (Messrs. T & G Lewis ?)|
|1843||55 Collieries in the West of
Monmouthshire. 46 in the Western Valleys
(24 Collieries in the Ebbw Valley, 21 Collieries in the Sirhowy Valley)
and only 8 in the Eastern Valley
|1844||Factory Act limits working hours
for children to 6.5hrs and 12hrs a
day for teenagers and women.
|1845||Abercarn and Gwyddon Collieries re-opened by by Messrs Alfrey of Newport|
|1845||David Morris of Risca takes
over the Abercarn Ironworks and starts
to manufacture tinplate.
|1845||Monmouthshire Canal Navigation
Company changes name to
Monmouthshire Railway and Canal Company (MR&CCo)
|1846||Act of Parliament forbids the
teaching of the Welsh language in schools.
All Welsh teachers replaced with English ones. Any child caught speaking
Welsh was punished.
|1846||Gas explosion at the Blackvein Colliery - 35 killed (3rd explosion)|
|1849||Explosion at the Blackvein Colliery - 2 killed (4th Explosion)|
|1849||Horse drawn vehicles prohibited from using tramroads.|
|1850||The early beginnings of the Village of Cross keys|
|1850||Western Valley line from Newport
via Crosskeys to Blaina opened
for passenger traffic. 10 mph speed limit. (21st December)
|1850||British School opened (25th
February) near the Blackvein Colliery,
at Coed Waunfawr.
This was the first school to be opened for the Parish of Risca but was
built in the Parish of Machen
|1853||Explosion at the Blackvein Colliery
- 10 killed (5th Explosion). Colliery
becomes known as the "Death Pit"
|1853||Long Bridge Viaduct at Risca
bypassed - OK for trams but unsuitable for
|1854||Brittania Foundry opened at Pontymister (Jordan & Co)|
|1855||MR&CCo relaid the main Western
Valley Lines (including Risca to Nine Mile Point)
to that of a standard guage rail.
|1855||Railway line from Nine Mile Point to Newport was complete as a rail way|
|1857||Crumlin Viaduct officially opened
- The highest railway Viaduct in the UK
The third highest bridge of its type in the world.
|1860||Explosion at the Blackvein Colliery - 142 killed (6th explosion)|
|1860||Sirhowy Tramroad converted to
a standard guage rail.
Name changed to Sirhowy Railway Company (S. R. Co.)
|1865||Brecknock and Abergavenny canal
purchased by Monmouthshire Railway
and Canal Company
|1865||S. R. Co. granted running powers
over the Nine Mile Point to
Enabled a service from Tredegar to Newport. 19th June.
|1865||Monmouthshire Railway and Canal
Co. starts it's passenger service (June)
to Dock St. Newport
|1867||Act passed for lighting with
Gas the Parishes of Risca, Mynyddyslwyn,
Abercarn and Machen.
|1867||Nine Mile Point railway station opened|
|1870||Trinity Congregational Church - Pontywaun - Officially opened (6th April)|
|1870||"Riscatype" type foundry established by Yendall & Co. Ltd in Risca|
|1871||William Henry Davies the Poet
born in Newport (1871-1940)
His first major success, The Autobiography of a Super-Tramp
was published in 1908
|1872||Blackvein Colliery purchased by Edmund Hanay Watts.|
|1873||Monmmouthhshire & South Wales Coal owners Association formed|
|1873||Edmund Hanay Watts forms the London and South Wales Coal Company (LSWCC)|
|1873||Celynen South Colliery - Abercarn - shafts first sunk in June|
|1873||Over 60,000 Coal Miners on Strike
in the Monmouthshire Valleys.
12,000 Iron Workers locked out.
|1875||Disastrous Floods in Monmouthshire
- Flannel Factory Disaster
at Cwmcarn - 14th July
|1875||North Risca Colliery sunk near Crosskeys (in the Parish of Mynyddislwyn)|
|1875||Great Western Railway (G.W.R)
takes over the Monmouthshire Railway
and Canal Company (MR&CCo)
|1876||Rugby first played at Crosskeys - one of the four original Welsh Clubs.|
|1876||Coal production commences at the Celynen South Colliery - Abercarn|
|1876||London & Northwestern (L&NW) takes over the Sirhowy Railway line.|
|1877||Great Western Railway (GWR) takes over Hall's tramroad (Crosskeys to Manmoel)|
|1878||The Parish of Risca is governed
by a "Local Board" from 1878 until 1894.
The "Risca Local Board" takes over parts of the Parishes of Upper and
Lower Machen and Mynyddyslwyn
|1878||Explosion at the Prince of Wales Colliery - Abercarn - 268 killed (3rd explosion)|
|1878||North Risca Colliery (near Crosskeys
) - officially opened in the Mynyddislwyn
located in the Parish of Risca
near the Colliery) is listed as being in the Parish of Mynyddislwyn
on the 1881 Census
|1878||Islwyn dies and is buried at Babel Chapel (Cwmfellinfach) 2th November|
|1878||John Oliver and Robert Britton
start a Baptist Sunday School at Woodland
Place Crosskeys. Simple services were held at the home of Henry Shipton
(A grocer at Woodland Place - probably located at what is now the Post Office
(1881 Census & O.S Maps)
|1880||Risca and Mynyddislwn Joint
Board School opened at Western Terrace,
|1880||Foundation stone of Hope Baptist
Chapel at Crosskeys laid
by E.H Watts 4th March
|1880||July 15th Explosion at North Risca Colliery - Crosskeys - kills 120 men and boys|
|1881||The Risca "Local Board" takes
over the administration of further portions of the
Mynyddislwyn Parish .
|1881||The South Wales area becomes the foremost coal exporting district in Britain|
|1882||Hope Baptist Chapel at Crosskeys officially opened - February 18th|
|1885||Crosskeys Rugby Football Club founded|
|1885||Abercarn Colliery reopened by Abercarn Coal Company (ACC)|
|1890||William Brace of Risca was elected
miners' agent for the Monmouth
and South Wales District Miners Association
|c.1890||First Postcards of local views printed. Very popular with the public 1890-1920|
|1891||Parish of Risca population =
5647 : Mynyddislwyn population = 14,364
Machen population = 3161
|1894||Risca Urban District Council formed under the Local Government Act|
|1895||ACC & LSWCC amalgamate to
form United National Collieries Ltd
(E.H. Watts Chairman)
|1897||Waunfawr School opened in Crosskeys|
|1898||South Wales miners locked out
for four months by the coal owners
(April - August) .
Compelled to accept owners terms in September.
|1898||South Wales Miners Federation setup|
|1899||South Wales Miners Federation had 104,000 members|
|1900||154,571 employed in South Wales Coal Mines|
|1900||Ebbw Vale Facts at the turn of the Century|
|1902||124 working mines in Western Monmouthshire|
|1902||Sinking of Coronation Colliery
(Nine Mile Point) begins. West Shaft
392 yards east shaft 383 yards.
|1902||Survey estimates that 225 Million
tons of Coal exists between Crosskeys
|1908||The Great Hurricane of 1908.
31st August - 2nd September. In Gwent it
was considered "the worst storm in living memory"
|1911||Miners' Institute constructed
in Crosskeys out of Lodge funds.
It contained one of the most up-to-date libraries in Monmouthshire
|1916||Miners' Institute constructed in Risca|
|1918||Serious gob fire at the Blackvein Colliery (12th July - 9th August)|
|1920||First Bus Services begin in the valleys|
|1923||Risca and Crosskeys Advertiser
first published by Yendall & Co. Ltd (12th May)
The "Advertiser" - a free journal - was later renamed the Risca & Blackwood
|1926||General Strike and lock-out - time of mass demonstrations and riots.|
|1926||May 22nd Massive demonstration
in the Western Valleys - thousands of people
from Abercarn, Crosskeys, Pontymister, Risca, Wattsville, Bedwas and Machen
marched on Newport to protest on the lack of poor relief.
|1930||Commercial use of the Crumlin branch of the Monmouthshire Canal ceases|
|1930||Pithead Baths opened at the North Risca Colliery - August|
|1935||"Stay down strike" at Nine Mile
Point Colliery and the North Risca
Colliery near Cross keys.
186 miners stage a stay down strike at the "Risca Pit" for 72hrs.
177hrs underground at the Nine Mile Point Colliery.
|1947||Nationalisation of the Coal Mines|
|1952||Crumlin Viaduct scheduled for preservation.|
|1964||Nine Mile Point Colliery closed.|
|1967||North Risca Colliery at Cross keys closed. (or July66?)|
|1967||Crumlin Viaduct demolished|
|1970||Nine Mile Point coal tip and
colliery removed - now known as Nine Mile
Point Industrial Estate.
|1972||1630th edition of the "Advertiser"
was published and printed by The Starling
|1974||Local goverment re-organisation - "Monmouthshire becomes Gwent"|
|1979||Ten pits left in Gwent|
|1984||Miners strike Closure of Pits|
|1985||Celynen South Colliery at Abercarn closed|
|1996||Gwent (Old Monmouthshire) is
broken up into five Unitary Authorities
Blaenau Gwent, Caerphilly, Monmouthshire, Newport and Torfaen
|2002||On July 5th At 10:30am the steel works started it's last shift and bringing an end to the Steel Works and Iron era of Ebbw Vale.|
|2008||On February 6th At 06:40 the first commercial passanger train for 46 years leaves Ebbw Vale. The Journey Takes a route to Cardiff|