West Glamorgan Archive Service

Borough/County Borough/ City of Swansea records

Reference code(s): GB 0216 B/S

Held at:

Title: Borough/County Borough/ City of Swansea records

Short title: Borough/County Borough/ City of Swansea records

Dates of creation: 1818-1996

Level of description: Fonds

Extent and medium: Approximately 63 linear metres.

Name of creator(s): Swansea County Borough Council; Swansea City Council; Swansea Borough


Administrative and biographical history: Swansea Borough was granted its first charter by William de Newburgh, earl of Warwick, between 1158 and 1184. The ancient borough of Swansea consisted of Burgesses, elected if suitably qualified or connected, on payment of a fee. The aldermen were a self-appointing body, one of whom would be the Portreeve, elected annually at Michaelmas. The two Common Attorneys attended the Portreeve on public occasions and managed corporation finances. There were four Haywards, whose job it was to prevent trespass on corporation lands on the Burrows (the seashore and sandbanks) and the upland areas around Townhill. There was a Learkeeper to oversee the passage of ships and their cargoes through the harbour, a Crier to announce important events in the town, and six Constables to keep the peace. The Borough received County Borough status in 1889 under the 1888 Local Government Act, and was accorded city status in 1969. There were three major Borough extensions to the boundaries of the borough, first in 1835, when Morriston, St Thomas, Landore, St John-juxta-Swansea, and part of Llansamlet parish were added, and again in 1889 when areas around Cwmbwrla and Trewyddfa were included, and in 1918 when the borough was enlarged to include the whole of the ancient parish of Swansea, the southern part of Llangyfelach parish, all of Llansamlet parish, and Oystermouth Urban District Council and Brynau parish. Under local government reorganisation in 1974 Swansea County Borough and Gower Rural District were merged to create the new Swansea City Council, while many of the powers of the County Borough were transferred to the new county of West Glamorgan. In 1982 the city was granted a Lord Mayor.


Scope and content: Records of various departments, including accounts and rentals 1818-1945, rate books 1905-1930, annual accounts 1884-1939; council and committee minutes 1895-1974; agreements relating to electricity supply; yearbooks and diaries 1970-1994, records relating to public health, borough police and Swansea Corporation abattoir and cattle market. Also records of the following departments: Borough Architect: plans of buildings 1924-1964; Estate Agent: photographs of the Lower Swansea Valley and mouth of the Tawe, 1986-1996; Swansea Borough Education Authority: minutes and other papers 1894-1974; Borough Engineer: maps showing improvement lines, adopted highways etc., mid-late 20th century; Main Drainage department: plans, papers and photographs relating to drainage schemes in Swansea Borough 1911-1934; Planning department: printed reports and brochures 1972-1990, development plans 1924-1960; planning briefs for developments and special projects; photographs of council buildings, building sites and developments, mid-late 20th century; Social Services department: minutes, account book and records relating to adoptions (restrictions apply to the latter) 1949-1974; Treasurer's department: tax records and stock records 1937-1971; Waterworks department: records relating to water works and reservoirs 1883-1955; Weights and Measures department: inspector's journals and registers 1901-1957.


Language/script: English

System of arrangement: Arranged into the following: Various departments; Architect's Department; Estate Agent's Department; Swansea Borough Education Authority; Borough Engineer's Department; Main Drainage Department; Planning Department; Social Services Department; Treasurer's Department; Waterworks Department; Weights and Measures Department.

Conditions governing access: No restrictions

Conditions governing reproduction: Usual copyright regulations apply.

Finding aids: A hard copy is available at the West Glamorgan Archive Service and online on the West Glamorgan Archive Service website.
Detailed catalogue


Appraisal, destruction and scheduling information: Information not available.

Accruals: Accruals are possible

Immediate source of acquisition: It is the policy of the West Glamorgan Archive Service to withhold the names of depositors.


Related units of description: Other material relating to Swansea Borough is at the West Glamorgan Archive Service, reference B/S Corp, TC, EA, BA, BE and TR.


Note: Title supplied from contents of fonds

Archivist's note: Compiled by Andrew Dulley, West Glamorgan Archive Service. The following sources were used in the compilation of this description: West Glamorgan Archive Service, County Borough/City of Swansea, B/S, catalogue; Collis, Kim, The West Glamorgan Archive Service, A Guide to the Collections (Swansea, 1998).

Rules or conventions: This description follows ANW guidelines based on ISAD(G) second edition, AACR2, and LCSH

Date(s) of description: March 2009



Swansea (Wales). | City Council | Archives

Swansea (Wales). | County Borough Council | Archives

Personal names

Corporate names

Swansea (Wales) | City Council

Swansea (Wales) | County Borough Council