The Glamorgan-Gwent Archaeological Trust Ltd.

Archaeology in Wales


Ynysfach Ironworks, Merthyr Tydfil 3D animated reconstruction iDEA/GGAT

The final stage of the investigations at the Ynysfach Ironworks is the interpretation of the site. This is where we try to make sense of all the information recovered during the excavations and post-excavation research. In order to properly interpret the Ynysfach Ironworks, the archaeological evidence produced from the excavations was analysed along with specialist reports and historical documents. Many documents associated with Ynysfach Ironworks, Cyfarthfa Ironworks and the Crawshay family survive today and were consulted at local and national record offices. These documents included maps, historical artwork , metallurgical observations of the nineteenth century, Crawshay company archives, photographs, newspapers and numerous industrial publications. Together, they have informed on many aspects of the works including the people involved in the designing, building and working of the site, the chronology and the purpose of the buildings on the site, the technological innovations and processes used at the Ynysfach Ironworks.

We have consolidated this information and disseminated it in numerous ways throughout the project. Some of this has been through traditional methods of lectures, leaflets and information panels but also employing more detailed methods of isometric 3-D reconstruction drawings and innovative methods including an accurate animation of the works together with a descriptive voice over and sub-titles (in both Welsh and English) which shows the works at its most productive in around 1860.

A large display consisting of three information panels will be erected in the main foyer of the new education building at Merthyr Tydfil College. These panels detail the history of the site, how the ironworks functioned, the metallurgical processes and an account of our archaeological investigations. This display forms a permanent publically accessible heritage resource detailing the international significance of the former ironworks upon which the college is built.

Learn more about the Animation

Learn more about the Information Panels