Posts Tagged ‘Pontypool’

Cwmffrwdoer Infants School. Do you recognise anyone?

January 20, 2015

It’s always pleasing to receive emails from visitors to my blog especially when they write from other countries where they are now living. It’s amazing how far flung are some of the people who were born and brought up in Pontypool.

Just recently I’ve had some emails from Garry Taylor who lives in Portland USA. He says “Portland is a very beautiful place and in many ways the people often remind me of the Welsh- very kind, open, honest and willing to stop and pass the time of day with a conversation.”

Garry went to Cwmffrwdoer Infants and Junior School and also Twmpath. He has kindly sent me two photographs of some of the Infants children which I enclose below. Garry has also sent me the names of the children he can remember so it’s possible that some visitors might remember either themselves or a relative in one of the photographs.

If any visitors have any other photographs of Cwmffrwdoer Junior and Infants School please let me have copies in an email and I can add them in a later post. I know Garry would like to see them.

infants school

Cwmffrwdoer infants school about 1970 [ish]
Teachers, Mrs. Roper lady on right of image with white hair,, Mrs.
Cleaves sat directly behind her.
Christine Rappel, Linda Probert, Sally-Ann Price, Martin Leighton, Simon
Curzon,”Snakey” Kevin Price, Stephen Jones, Ian [or Neil] Foxwell, Sean
Edwards, Curt Hamer, Chris Williams, Lesa Jones [the daughter of the
Benny Jones who recently died], Sharon Young, Andrea Hill, Alison
Redman, Karen Osmond, Gareth Strange, Ann Rudick, Michelle Hurley, Alan
Hancock, Maxine Richards, Brenda Hanratty, Judith Read, Ian Watkins,
Andrew Gasconge, Paul Lamrick, Ian Francis, Michelle Hurley, Michele

infants school 2
The second image with paper flower
Ian Francis, Judith Read, Maxine Richards, Alison Redman, Dionne Nutt,
second row down, Clare Jones, Karen Osmond, Garry Taylor [me] Paul
Lamrick, and not sure,
front row, Steward Mathews, Linda Peacock, and

Anthony Taylor.

I don’t have any images from Junior School- I think the annual photo
must have been lost along with my many travels.

WordPress report for 2013 on my Pontypool blog

December 31, 2013


“The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 47,000 times in 2013. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House it would take about 17 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

In 2013 there were 25 new posts growing the total archive of this blog to 160 posts. There were 38 pictures uploaded, that’s about 3 pictures a month.

The busiest day of the year was March 16th with 1,831 views.

These are the posts that got the most views in 2013:
1. Pontypool’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.   1 comment
2. Tragedy at West Mon (Revised account).   87 comments
3. Murder most foul in Pontypool.   6 comments
4. Parts of old Pontypool that have vanished.   22 comments
5. Old photographs of Pontypool.   4 comments

Visitors came from 127 different countries. Most visitors came from the United Kingdom but the United States and Australia were not far behind.

The most commented on post in 2013 was “The Crown Garage in George Street and the Fynn family.”

These were the 5 most active  commenters:
1. Clive Barnby with 19 comments.
2. Audrey Ross with 13 comments.
3. Dennis Williams with 6 comments.
4. Laurie Oliver with 6 comments.
5. David Powell with 6 comments.”

It only remains for me to wish all my visitors a very happy New Year. Please visit again in 2014.

Aerial views of Pontypool, Griffithstown and West Mon

February 28, 2013


I enclose below a selection of aerial photographs of Pontypool, Griffithstown and West Mon. They come from the massive collection of photographs now available on the Internet taken between 1919 and 1955. If you wish to see more of them just visit the website at:

General view Pontypool

General view of Pontypool


Another view of Pontypool

Griffithstown general view

General view of Griffithstown

Griffithstown railway

Railway at Griffithstown

West Mon

West Mon School

Hello Pontypool!

June 6, 2008

I started at West Mon Boys’ School in Pontypool during the war in 1942. During one of our music lessons, our music master, “Toot” Steven informed us that we were going to borrow the Harrow School Song for our own use. I remember the opening verse very well:

Forty years on, when afar and asunder
Parted are those who are singing today,
When you look back, and forgetfully wonder
What you were like in your work and your play,
Then, it may be, there will often come o’er you,
Glimpses of notes like the catch of a song –
Visions of boyhood shall float them before you,
Echoes of dreamland shall bear them along.

I remember, at the time, feeling slightly nostalgic when I heard the words and thinking what a far-distant time we were singing about; although I did wonder how far flung we might all be and what we might be doing in forty years’ time.

Now I’m looking back, not over forty years, but well over seventy and I really do wonder what all those boys are doing and where they are. So I decided to start this blog. It’s possible that some of those old school friends might see it. I expect that there are old westmonians not only scattered all over the UK but all over the world. They might like to recall those “visions of boyhood” of yesteryear.

It’s not my intention to make this blog another “history of Pontypool” as there are plenty of those about already. This will be an intensely personal collection of recollections, almost at random as they occur to me; and I don’t want them necessarily to be only my recollections. If any visitors have any they’d like to share, I’d love to hear about them. This doesn’t mean only old westmonians of course, but everybody who’s ever lived in Pontypool and its surroundings.

Any visitor wishing to do this can either make a comment after any of the posts or they can email me at