Neath Abbey Ironworks is a unique site of world importance. While still making iron in its blast furnaces, it rose to become one of the greatest engineering concerns in Great Britain, producing railway locomotives, marine engines, iron sailing and steam ships, stationary steam engines. Several famous engineers, such as Sir Benjamin Baker of Forth Bridge fame, were trained as apprentices here.
These products powered the Industrial Revolution, and made Wales the first industrial society. It exported this technology globally. It is a place that changed our world.
View two superb eighteenth century blast furnaces, and the engine manufactory where the steam engines were constructed.
Bill Zajac, from Cadw, will be conducting guided tours of the site at 2pm on both days.
There will be exhibitions arranged by the Friends, and they will answer questions regarding the Ironworks.
Refreshments will be served.
Since last year, the Friends have cleared undergrowth and discovered a lot of exciting new information about the site. An archaeological dig has taken place which has discovered some new features, such as a water-wheel pit and the walls of the casting house, and the guide will explain all these features.
Address - Neath Abbey Ironworks, New Road, Neath Abbey, Neath, SA10 7NH.
Neath Abbey Ironworks is accessible by the lane to the side of GMF Motor Factors, opposite the Smith’s Arms on New Road, Neath Abbey, Neath, SA10 7NH on the A4230. There is plenty of free car parking in the area.
For transport by bus, there are stops adjacent to the entrance and outside the Smith’s Arms.
The site is flat, but uneven and rough. The site is accessible for disabled people with wheelchair access, but in places this is limited.
Neath Abbey, near by, is holding an Open Doors event on the same day. Bill Zajac is also conducting tours there.