West Glamorgan Archive Service

Pontardawe Union Board of Guardians Records

Reference code(s): GB 0216 U Pd

Held at:

Title: Pontardawe Union Board of Guardians Records

Short title: Pontardawe Union Board of Guardians records

Dates of creation: 1875-1988

Level of description: Fonds

Extent and medium: 9 linear metres

Name of creator(s): Pontardawe Poor Law Union Board of Guardians; Glamorgan County Council Public Assistance Committee; Glamorgan County Council Welfare Service Committee


Administrative and biographical history: Until the Poor Law Amendment Act 1834, relief of the poor was the responsibility of the parish. Following the Act, parishes were grouped into Unions that were charged to provide a workhouse for the relief of the able-bodied poor. Pontardawe Poor Law Union was formed in 1875 from the parishes that formed the north-west part of the Neath Poor Law Union, consisting of Cilybebyll, Llangiwg, Mawr, Rhyndwyglydach, Ynysymwn, Ystradgynlais Higher and Ystradgynlais Lower in Glamorgan. The Union workhouse was situated in Pontardawe and was opened in 1879. The Board of Guardians responsible for the Union had other duties from time to time, including the registration of births, marriages and deaths, vaccinations, assessments of rates, sanitation, school attendance and infant life protection. By the time of the Local Government Act 1929 unions were abolished and their duties transferred to County Councils, with responsibility for the poor being transferred to the Public Assistance Committee until 1948. The workhouse became Pontardawe Public Assistance Institution in 1930 when the functions of the Poor Law Union were transferred to the Glamorgan County Council. In 1948, it became the Danybryn Hostel which finally closed in 1988. The building was demolished shortly afterwards and sheltered housing now occupies the site.


Scope and content: Records of Pontardawe Poor Law Union and successor bodies, 1875-1988, including minutes, 1875-1936; financial records, 1875-1958; inmate registers and records, 1902-1979; workhouse administration records, 1901-1953; valuation lists, 1898-1927; photographs, c.1880-1988; Pontardawe Union Rural Sanitary Authority records, 1883-1898.


Language/script: English, Welsh

System of arrangement: Arranged into the following: Pontardawe Board of Guardians minute books; Registers; Financial records; Valuation lists; Miscellaneous; Pontardawe Union Rural Sanitary Authority; Pontardawe Union/County Council Public Assistance Committee/County Council Welfare Service Committee.

Conditions governing access: Items under 100 years old containing information on named individuals may be restricted in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998.

Conditions governing reproduction: Usual copyright regulations apply.

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


Appraisal, destruction and scheduling information: Information not available

Accruals: Accruals are not expected

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



Note: Title supplied from contents of fonds

Archivist's note: Compiled by Richard Burman for the ANW project. The following sources were used in the compilation of this description: West Glamorgan Archive Service, Pontardawe Poor Law Union Board of Guardians, catalogue; The History of Poor Law website (http://users.ox.ac.uk/~peter/workhouse/unions.html), viewed 31 October 2005.

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

Date(s) of description: October 2005



Glamorgan (Wales). | County Council. | Public Assistance Committee | Archives

Glamorgan (Wales). | County Council. | Welfare Service Committee | Archives

Pontardawe Poor Law Union | Archives

Poor laws | Wales | Pontardawe (town)

Public welfare | Wales | Pontardawe (town)

Personal names

Corporate names

Glamorgan (Wales) | County Council. | Public Assistance Committee

Glamorgan (Wales) | County Council. | Welfare Service Committee

Pontardawe Poor Law Union | Board of Guardians