"YSTRAD DYFODWG, in the Cwmwd of Meisgyn, Cantref of Penythen (now called the Hundred of Miskin), County of GLAMORGAN, South Wales: a Perpetual Curacy, not in charge, annexed to the Vicarage of Llan Trisaint: Patron, The Vicar of Llan Trisaint: Church dedicated to St. Tyfodwg. The Resident Population of this Parish, in 1801, was 542. The Money raised by the Parish Rates, in 1803, was, £ 222..19..1 1/2. It is 9 m. N. N. W. from Llan Trisaint. According to the Diocesan Report, in 1809, the yearly value of this Benefice, arising from Stipend, and Augmentation, was £44. It is situate near the river Rhonddu Fawr. This is a very wild and romantic part of the County; and the Parish is twelve miles in circumference, the Church standing almost in the centre of it. See, Rhigos. " [From: A Topographical Dictionary of The Dominion of Wales by Nicholas Carlisle, London, 1811.]

"RHONDDA, formerly named Ystradyfodwg, an extensive parish and parliamentary borough comprising several hamlets, is one of the largest coal-producing parishes Glamorganshire, and is 20 miles south-west from Merthyr Tydfil, 20 north-west from Cardiff, 25 east from Swansea and 180 from London; it is in the hundred of Miskin, petty sessional division of Lower Miskin, Pontypridd union and county court district, rural deanery of Rhondda, and archdeaconry and diocese of Llandaff." [From  Kelly's South Wales Directory 1923  (ArchiveCDBooks)  - transcribed by Gareth Hicks]



Here is a substantial reading list of books which relate to Glamorgan, either county or parish.

An index to the book Rhondda, A second selection [Archive Photograph Series] has been provided by Allen Powell


Business & Commerce Records

  • Ocean Coal & Wilsons Ltd, colliery proprietors
    1908-54: minute books, balance sheets, accounts
    [Guildhall Library, Aldermanbury, London EC2P 2EJ]


From Kelly's South Wales Directory 1923  (ArchiveCDBooks)  - transcribed by Gareth Hicks

  • A cemetery of 25 acres, between Trealaw and Porth, was formed in 1879 at a cost of £14,000, for Rhondda, Llanwonno and Llantrisant. A cemetery of 15 acres was formed in 1871 at a cost of £7000, at Treorchy, and was enlarged in 1914 by the addition of 15 acres, for the parish of Rhondda; and there is also a cemetery of 5 acres at Mardy, formed in 1875, at a cost of £3600; each contains two mortuary chapels, and since April 1st, 1896, have been under the control of the Rhondda Urban District Council Burial Committee of 13 members.

The Glamorgan Family History Society have produced a set of microfiche containing Monumental Inscriptions for the following burial grounds :-

  • Parish Church of St. John the Baptist


There are more than 30 churches identified in this place. Please click here for a complete list.

Church History

Chapels Database  - a  list of all known non-conformist chapels or other non-Anglican religions in the parish

See Welsh Chapels and Churches for photographs of various churches/chapels in this parish

From Kelly's South Wales Directory 1923  (ArchiveCDBooks)  - transcribed by Gareth Hicks

  • The church of St. John at Ton Pentre, erected in 1893-4 in place of the ancient church, then removed, is an edifice of stone in the Early English style, consisting of chancel with side chapel, two naves, south porch, and a western turret containing 2 bells: in the church is a brass table to the Rev. William Rhys, a former Vicar of the parish, erected by his sons: the communion cup bears the date 1695; there are 450 sittings. A room for the Sunday school and mission has been erected in the churchyard.  The register dates from the year 1717.  The living is a vicarage, yearly value £340, with residence, and held since 1922 by the Rev. John Daniel Hughes M.A. of St. David's College, Lampeter, and surrogate.

Church Records

For full and up-to-date details of their holdings see the sites of Glamorgan Record Office and/or West Glamorgan Archives

See Bap/Mar/Bur data on  FreeReg

The church is dedicated to St. John the Baptist, and is in the Benefice of Ystradyfodwg. Details of the present incumbent of this benefice can be found at the Church in Wales website. The church can be located at grid reference SS972954.

A transcription of the registers is available from the Glamorgan Family History Society for the years: Baptisms, 1717-1883, Marriages, 1717-1837, Burials, 1629-1987.

Anglican Parish Registers Held at the Glamorgan Record Office, Cardiff
Baptisms Marriages Burials Banns Bishops Transcripts
1719-1944 1719-1761, 1779-1973 1719-1968 1864-1977 1717, 1724-1734, 1736-1819, 1821-1835

Details of extant records on Archives Network Wales for the following;

  • Ystradyfodwg Ecclesiastical Parish records       " .......... including registers of baptisms, 1719-1974; marriages, 1917-1971; burials, 1719-1973; banns, 1779-1973; services, 1885-1987; churchwardens and overseers records, 1750-1943; certificates and licences, 1840-1942; charities, 1909"

Modern Parishes & Chapels of Ease :-

Non Conformist Registers Deposited at the Glamorgan Record Office, Cardiff
Chapel Baptisms Marriages Burials OS Map Ref
Tabernacle, Wesleyan - 1958-1970, 1972-1974 -

SS 97829517

Heol-fach in Ystradyfodwg

Nonconformist Registers Deposited at the National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth
Chapel Baptisms Marriages Burials OS Map Ref
Bethel, Calvinistic Methodist - - 1935-1981 SS 98459512

Description & Travel

You can see pictures of Ystradyfodwg which are provided by:



Transcript of complete name listing for Treherbert and Ystrad-Rhondda, with the parish and hamlets of Ystradyfodwg, Blaen-y-cwm, Blaen-y-Rhondda, Cwmdare, Cwmpark, Llwynpia, Pen-y-griag, Penyrenglyn, Pentre, Ton-pentre-ystrad, Ton-y-pandy, Treorky, Tynewydd and Tynybedw, from Slaters Directory for 1880.



The transcription of the section for Ystradyfodwg from The National Gazetteer (1868) provided by Colin Hinson.

Description of parish (and hamlets) from A Topographical Dictionary of Wales (1833) by Samuel Lewis.


Historical Geography

Some of the hamlets, towns and villages within this parish



Historical snippets re 'the Rhondda', various contributors



This diagram shows the position of this parish within the county of Glamorgan - click on this to see a full size diagram of the county



Plan of the parish of Ystradyfodwg in the County of Glamorgan - on the People's Collection Wales site

Parish map (Kain/Oliver)

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SS957991 (Lat/Lon: 51.680975, -3.509488), Ystradyfodwg which are provided by:


Names, Geographical

Places, villages, farms etc within Ystradyfodwg parish as shown on the online parish map from the CD of Historic Parishes of England and Wales: an Electronic Map of Boundaries before 1850 with a Gazetteer and Metadata [computer file]. (Kain, R.J.P., Oliver, R.R.). (Extracted by Roy Pugh)

  • Ystradyfodwg (66A, B & C=Middle, Home & Clydach); Abergorky Colliery, Blaen Clydach, Blaen Rhondda, Blaen-Rhondda Farm, Blaen-y-cwm, Bodringallt, Bryn Bach, Bryn Llynwyn-ddwr, Bute Colliery, Bwlch Nantgwyn, Bwllfa, Carn y Celyn, Cefn Glas, Cefn Pen Rhys, Cefn y Rhondda, Cemetery(3), Chwarelau Blaen-corrwg, Clydach Vale, Coedcae-Rhondda, Coal Levels(5), Coal Pits, Colliery(6), Craig Blaen-Rhondda, Cwm Clydach, Cwm Dar, Cwm lan, Cwm Lluest, Cwm Orky, Cwm-parc, Cwm Parc Colliery, Cwm Saerbren, Cwm Selsig, Cwm y fforch, Cwm ?, Cynllwyn?-du, Dare Colliery, Dinas, Dunraven Colliery, Eastern Pit, Ferndale, Fernhill Cottages, Fforch-orky, Foel Goch, Gelli, Gelli Collieries, Gelli Faelog, Gelli Goch, Glyncornel H?, Golf Course, Graig fawr, Graig Rhondda-fach, Graig ?, GWR, Holyrood Terrace, Hospl(3), Isolation Hospl, Llwyn-y-pia, Llwynpia Mountain, Maendy Pit, Maerdy, Maerdy Collieries, Mynydd Bach, Mynydd Blaen-Rhondda, Mynydd Brith-weunydd, Mynydd Bwllfa, Mynydd Gelli, Mynydd Maendy, Mynydd Maerdy, Mynydd Penygraig. Mynydd Pwll-yr-hebog, Mynydd Ton, Mynydd Troed-y-rhiw, Mynydd Tyntyle, Mynydd Ty-isaf, Mynydd Tyle-coch, Mynydd Tynewydd, Mynydd William Meyrick, Mynydd yr Eglwys, Mynydd Ystrad ffernol, Nant y Gwa?, Parc uchaf, Pen Pych, Pen Rhys-isaf, Pen Rhys-uchaf, Pen-y-graig, Pentre, Pentre, Pentre Collieries, Pen-yr-englyn, Quarries, Reservoir (2), Reservoir Bryn Gelli, Rhondda, Rhondda Fach, Tar? Maerdy, Ton Pentre, Tonypandy, Tre-Alaw, Treherbert, Treorky, Ty-draw, Tyle-fforest,Tyntyle, Tylorstown, Twyn Dysgwylfa, Twyn y Bloedd, Tynewydd, Ynyshir, Ynys-wen, Ystrad-fechan, Ystrad Rhondda, ? Selsig, ? Saerbren, ? Bwllfa,
  • Rhigos (67) Bryn, Bryn-y-gaer, Cefn Rhigos Inn, Coed Carn-y-gist, Colliery, Crawshay's Tower, Cwm-hwnt, Cwm Wrfa, Great Western Railway, Gwrangon-fawr, Gwrangon-isaf, Gwrelych, Hendre-fawr, Hirwaun, Hirwaun Common, Hirwaun Ponds, Llethr Las, Llwyn-y-gwin, Llyn Fawr Reservoir, Mynydd Beili Glas, Nant Gwrangon, Pen-cae-?, Pen-rhiw, Pont Walby, Rhigos, Rhyd, Tunnel, Ty-newydd, Site of Cattle, Y Llyn, ? Bwlch.




Description of parish from A Topographical Dictionary of Wales (1833) by Samuel Lewis.

  • The Dinas collieries are situated in the vicinity, whence a communication is formed by tram-roads with the Glamorganshire canal.


The Population of Ystradyfodwg was as follows, and a more detailed breakdown is available.

1841 - 1,3631851 - 1,9981861 - 3,8571871 - 17,7771881 - 44,0461891 - 68,721

Public Records

Details of extant records on Archives Network Wales for the following;

  • Ystradyfodwg Burial Board records       1871-1896            " ..... established about 1871, by the Ystradyfodwg parish vestry, and covered the parish of Ystradyfodwg, Rhondda (Glamorgan). In 1877, the Ystradyfodwg Local Board was set up, covering the parish of Ystradyfodwg and parts of the parishes of Llantrisant and Llanwonno. Burial boards were therefore set up in December 1879, for the 'Llantrisant District' (that part of the parish of Llantrisant which lay within the Ystradyfodwg Local Board) and the `Llanwonno District' (the part of Llanwonno parish which lay within the Local Board). These two new Boards then joined with the existing Ystradyfodwg Board to form the Ystradyfodwg Joint Burial Board..............................."
  • Ystradyfodwg Civil Parish records         " ......... comprising assistant overseers valuation list, 1880-c1882; extracts from vestry minutes book, 1750-1777 [copied 1950]; tithe plan and apportionment, 1844; minutes of Ystrad Community Council and Treherbert Community Council, 1995"  
  • Ystradyfodwg Local Board of Health    1877-1905     "......... was created in 1877, from the Pontypridd Rural Sanitary District. It succeeded the Ystradyfodwg Parochial [Sanitary] Committee, a committee of the Pontypridd Rural Sanitary Authority which had been set up in 1872, to exercise within the parish of Ystradyfodwg all the powers of the Rural Sanitary Authority. ......................"


Details of extant records on Archives Network Wales for the following;

  • Rhondda/Ystradyfodwg School Board records     "........... comprising of minute books, 1878-1903; reports, 1894-1903; account books, 1893-1905; registers of deeds, 1869-1902; ledgers, 1879-1902; salaries of teachers, 1879-1893; cash books, 1882-1886; year book, 1899"

Social Life & Customs

From Kelly's South Wales Directory 1923  (ArchiveCDBooks)  - transcribed by Gareth Hicks

  • Rhondda Urban District Fever Hospital, at Tyntyla, was erected in 1902 and extended in 1908, at a cost of £25,000, and will hold 62 patients.
  • The Urban District is lit with gas and electricity supplied by the Council; the water supply is derived from springs above Blaen Rhondda, and conveyed thence to the works at Treherbert, the property of the District Council, a new reservoir was completed 1914 at Llynfawr. Part of the district is supplied water by the Pontypridd and Rhondda Joint Water Board from their works near Mardy.

  • Electric tramways run throughout the district, being leased by the Council to the Rhondda Tramways Co. Ltd. who also run motor omnibus services in various localities.