Ystalyfera

History and Heritage

Alltygrug Park, Ystalyfera

Alltygrug Park was bequeathed to the people of Ystalyfera by Colonel Gough in 1903, initially managed by a board of trustees. It was transferred to the council in 1917, and in 1922 had the original Ystalyfera War Memorial erected upon its grounds. In 1924, the local newspaper, the Llais ran a campaign to get the park named after local councillor, Daniel Evans. This campaign must have been unsuccessful, for the park continues to be known by its informal name of Alltygrug Park.

The article below is from The Labour Voice, Saturday July 26th 1924 and covers the history of the park over the previous twenty-one years.

The Park: It's Name, and a Suggestion

In view of the movement that is now going forward to collect funds for improving the park at Ystalyfera a very interesting suggestion is being put forward to its name. The suggestion is, to put it briefly, that the name be 'Evan's Park' or 'Parc Daniel Evans'. To anyone who knows anything of the history of the park, there can be no question as which or why Daniels Evans! So far as this movement is concerned there is only one, and his claims to the gratitude of the public in this matter are quite substantial. No one, so far as we can judge is likely to deny this.

In the first place, it is pretty certain that ex-Councillor Daniel Evans, Alltygrug Road, was the first to move in this question of providing a park for Ystalyfera. And although he had some very faithful and enthusiastic supporters, whose names appear in the list below, these would be the first to acknowledge that he was the life and soul of the movement. He thought out plans for its acquisition and laying out. He spoke about it,, and was so taken up with the idea that he infected others with his own enthusiasm. In fact it was one of his darling projects and it has had a warm corner in his heart for many years.

As a result of his propaganda the park came into being. It is true that owing to lack of funds the ideal park has not yet been realised, but with the goodwill and united support of all the inhabitants, we shall in a short time have a park we may be proud of. It will be a quiet and beautiful spot where wearied and worried souls and bodies may get rest and comfort.

We sincerely hope that the idea of coupling the park with the name of the old veteran who must be approaching his eightieth birthday, will be taken up and supported generally. It may serve as a reminder that those who spend themselves unselfishly in the public service will not, and should not, be entirely forgotten. With reference to Mr Evans' other claims to public recognition, it is only necessary to point to his sterling character, his lifelong devotion and faithful service in connection with the moral and religious life of the community. We may or may not agree with all his opinions on the affairs of church and state. He holds strong opinions and expresses them with a force and conviction which disconcerts many weaker brethren, but in spite of all that, and perhaps because of it, we admire his courage, honesty of purpose, and unbending fidelity to his principles and ideals. We trust that 'Parc Daniel Evans' will before long be heard from the lips of all, children and grown-up people, and that what the name denotes will be 'a thing of beauty and a joy for ever.'

Twenty one years have now passed since the site of the park was presented to the public free of all charges by the generosity of Colonel Gough. The date of the deed, if we remember rightly, is June 3rd, 1903. Among the trustees who are now living were Messrs. John D. Rees, H.J. Powell, J.M. Williams, Daniel Jones, Luther Lloyd, E.T. Nicholas, Daniel Evans, E.R. Morgan, Frederick Rees, D.E. Parry, Oliver Evans, Rev. J. Davies, Messrs D. Llew. Thomas and J. Evans, and the Vicar of Ystalyfera for the time being. Those who have passed away were Messrs Morgan Griffiths, T.C. Williams, Wm. Williams, R.L. Morgan and Rev. Wm. Jones.

In December 1917 the trustees made the park over to the Parish Council. It is only fair to say that the present local members on this Council have shown a praiseworthy interest in promoting schemes for the park's improvement. It is to their initiative and enterprise that the present 'push' for more funds is due. For the present a sum of £50 is aimed at, and although a number of the districts have not yet returned their books and contributions £31 11s. 6d. is in hand already. If only for the fact that the War Memorial has been built on the park it is to be hoped that the sum now attempted will be easily collected and that when further sums will be required no difficulty will be experienced in collecting them.


Read about the unveiling of the original Ystalyfera war memorial, from the South Wales Daily Post, 18th December 1922. It was removed in the 1980s and replaced with the current war memorial on Commercial Street, Ystalyfera.

The photographs seen here show Alltygrug Park today. The view on the right shows the entrance to the park, looking beyond towards the house that can be seen in the photograph of the park at the top left of this page. Today it has been greatly modernised, and has solar panels on its roof - time does not stand still. But it can still be seen to be the same house, in the same position vis-a-vis the park.

All modern photographs and original research by Val Trevallion, the old photograph at the top left of this page used with permission of its owner, Mr Hughes of Ystalyfera.

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Alltygrug Park, Ystalyfera

The entrance to Alltygrug Park


Alltygrug park, Ystalyfera


Alltygrug park, Ystalyfera