Sign of Early Autumn?— asks Mike Davies



Could this morning mist in Rheola be the first sign of an early autumn?  Although the official date for the start of the “season of mists and mellow fruitfulness” is the 23rd of September.

Mike Davies

Sickness Stops Daniel from Swimming in European Championships

Local “star” swimmer Daniel Jervis was due to compete in the 1500 metres and 400 metres freestyle in the European Championships last weekend.   We were all looking forward to cheering him on and wondered why he was unable to compete.  DNS-(did not start) appeared next to his name at the bottom of the list of swimmers in both events.

His grandmother Mrs Marlene Jervis explains what happened:

“Unfortunately, Daniel picked up a sickness bug and was too ill to swim in the 400 metres heat on Friday morning. He was hoping to make the heat for his main event, the 1500 metres, on Saturday morning but was too weak to swim.  It was very disappointing, because he’d had a marvellous week training. The family (Tracey, Jonathan, John and I) had gone up to Glasgow to support him over the weekend as we had tickets for both events, and luckily Jonathan was able to visit him in the athletes’ village.  Daniel was flown home because he wasn’t able to stay in the team quarters in case of spreading the infection.”

Hard luck Dan!  We all sympathise but we know you’ll deal with the disappointment, enjoy your swimming and add to your tally of medals in the future.”






Beacons Reservoir Low Water Photos from Mike Davies

These are pictures taken at the Beacons Reservoir in the Brecon Beacons. on August  7rth



It’s a long time since I can remember the water level so low. . If anyone has photos of the reservoir from earlier “dry” summers, we’d really like to see them.

Pictures and report— Mike Davies







How does your garden grow?

Resolven District News would be delighted to see pictures of your gardens in full bloom.

Kathleen Evans starts us off  off with a lovely display in her garden .in Resolven





Why not add your own pics to our 2018  SUMMER GALLERY  by emailng us at:,uk

and attaching the photos



Mike Davies Swan Hunting

I went for a walk along the local canal as I knew the swans were building a nest. The male gets the reeds from the canal and hands it over for the female to make the nest.   I left them alone to carry on their duty,  The female lays up to seven eggs between late April and early May both parents will take it in turn to incubate the eggs which is approx 35-41 days,

A few weeks later I went back to see how they were getting on and to my surprise they had eight cygnets cwtched in the nest.  What a family!



I let them be and went back in 4 months to see that the cygnets have grown into swans 




Not long now before they fly the nest














Ynysfach W.I. May to July-What Have They Been Up To?


May began with a trip to see the newly opened Trago Mills Store in Merthyr – what an enormous shop which seemed to sell everything! We all enjoyed a good browse followed by a bite to eat in the cafe. We all went home laden with goodies we never even knew we wanted!


Our meeting this month was our annual meeting, in which the committee and President were elected by the members to serve for the coming year, and we debated this years resolution which was to campaign for parity between physical and mental illness. Our members voted unanimously to support this resolution. This was followed by a slide show illustrating all our trips and activities over the last year and a well-earned cup of tea and cake.

The 2018 NFWI Annual Meeting took place in the Motorpoint Arena on Wednesday 6th June and thousands of members for all over England, Wales and the Islands came to Cardiff for this prestigious event in the Woman’s Institute calendar. Among them were over three hundred members from Glamorgan Federation. Ynysfach’s Jenny Colley attended as delegate for the Cwmnedd group of WI’s.

The meeting began in true WI fashion with the singing of Jerusalem and this year Glamorgan’s Mrs Norma Morris of Catwg WI  had the honour of accompanying the members on the piano. A truly awe-inspiring sound!

Guest speakers during the day included Dame Stella Rimmington and  Huw Edwards. Both speakers were most entertaining . Stella Rimmington told how she came to be employed by MI5 and eventually became the first female Head of the Service – apparently the model on which Dame Judy Dench based the character of ‘M’. Huw Edwards told of his more humble beginnings in LLanelli and his journalistic career that has led to his being the anchor of the BBC News. He spoke too of his nervousness at facing the WI – he had recently presented the royal wedding to 14 million people around the world but talking to 5,000 WI ladies was more scary!

Everyone agreed that it had been an excellent day and they were looking forward to 2019 when the meeting will be held in Bournemouth.

At our monthly meeting in June our speaker was Elizabeth Belcham, a local historian, who told us of ‘The bad girls of Swansea’. A most interesting and informative illustrated talk about crime and prostitution from 1870 -1914. Told through the lives of the women brought before the Swansea Police Courts from Swansea, Aberdare, Merthyr Tydfil, Neath, and Aberavon, and imprisoned in Swansea, this was  the story of life in the port of Swansea’s backstreets.

On 22nd June we had a trip to Porthcawl on a lovely sunny day, if a little windy! We all thoroughly enjoyed some free time to explore the shops and stroll along the front with a large ice cream. In the early afternoon we went to the Great House Hotel at Laleston for afternoon tea followed by a relaxing sit in their garden with a glass of wine – its a tough life!




July started with the Resolven Carnival. Eight members of Ynysfach WI took part in the parade dressed as Suffragettes, to celebrate the centenary of the first women to be granted the vote. They looked magnificent with their banners and sashes and did well to march in the scorching weather in their long skirts – a good job that we hadn’t chosen to wear the corsetry of the time too! Next year maybe we’ll go as bathing belles if its going to be so hot.



On the carnival field the rest of our valiant members were manning the cake stall – always the busiest stall. In soaring temperatures they cooked welsh cakes all afternoon and frantically tried to keep the rest of the fancy cakes from melting. We raised a good few £s for our funds and lost a good few lbs in the process!

Well done to all who took part in a very successful village event.

On 12th July some of us enjoyed a murder mystery evening hosted by our County Federation-a most entertaining event which involved a delicious two course dinner while trying to unravel a tale of trouble at the village fete when someone took the baking competition a little too seriously and bumped off the judge! Who done it? We didn’t guess the right answer but thoroughly enjoyed the evening.

Our July meeting featured a talk by another local historian, Viv Griffiths,  who came to tell us all about the ‘Churches of Skewen’. However a technical hitch brought the slide show to a halt so we had a different one on the woollen mill at Neath Abbey. It was a most interesting subject, especially as a few of our members recognised some of the faces in the pictures and could add to Mr Griffiths story.

Finally July 21st saw our Annual County Show held at North Cornelly. We entered 18 items in to  10 classes and came away with 8 prize cards! Liz Jones won first prize for her small cakes and ‘best in show’ for her sugarcraft model of a market stall which was absolutely exquisite; Carole Jeffrey won second prize for her fabulous bookfolding item; Christine Davies was third in the preserve class and highly commended for her bag made from recycled denim; Jenny Colley was first in the bread roll class and joint third with Christine in the preserves. Ynysfach WI came second in two co-operative classes – the basket of homegrown vegetables and the ‘Farmers Market’


                                                                                          Co-operative Class



                                                                        Carole’s Bookbinding


                                                                               Liz’s Cakes

Congratulations to all who entered the show, it is a real achievement to win any prize up against the best in the County!

REPORT  by JENNY COLLEY ( President Ynysfach W.I)








Ynysfach School Summer fete

A summer fete is being held at Resolven Rugby Club on Saturday 18th of August.

From 12 o’clock  onwards

Friends of Ynysfach are raising money for Ynysfach Primary School and will be selling uniforms, as well as toys and books and jewellery that have been kindly donated to us. Some of the children are having stalls to help with their “Grow a Pound” project from school. We also have non -school stall holders and lots more are welcome. There is a £5 charge to have a stall, however all school children have a stall free..










We will have a BBQ as well as games and music. All ages welcome -hope to see everybody there to support our local primary school.

Thank you

Paula Mckeon






Lee Thomas Concert in Church Hall

Mike Davies Shoots a Rainbow

A rainbow opposite the rising sun over the A465 at Resolven.

This is an image not often seen as there was no rain to form a rainbow
the following text from Google:

“A rainbow is a meteorological phenomenon that is caused by reflection, refraction and dispersion of light in water droplets resulting in a spectrum of light appearing in the sky.
It takes the form of a multicoloured circular arc.  Rainbows caused by sunlight always appear in the section of sky directly opposite the sun.”


IMAGE and REPORT by Mike Davies







Resolven Women Bowlers Win Local Derby

Resolven Ladies Bowls Club faced Glynneath Ladies last week in the annual Shield game and walked off the green as winners.


As usual, there was an extra special bowls tea afterwards.









The event serves a double purpose. It is played as a West Glamorgan League game too.  So Resolven picked up important points by winning on 2 rinks and losing by just 1 shot on one rink.

But the history behind the shield contest goes back to 1987, as Martha Cowley sec. of Glynneath Ladies who was there at the time explains.

“A touring team of men and women bowlers from Milton Regis  were due to play  at the Gnoll in Neath and were disappointed to find the club had no women’s team at  the time.  But the Gnoll club sent out a plea for help to local ladies’ clubs and  Glynneath and Resolven  responded, providing a rink each.. The  tourists had brought along a shield to present to their hosts, but who was to receive it  Resolven or Glynneath?  Problem solved!  We decided to ‘fight for the honour ‘ every year.”



Iris Thomas, President of Resolven Ladies Club, who provided the current Shield when the three previous ones ran out of space, presented it to vice- captain Ceri Holmes, who was delighted to receive it on behalf of her team.

PHOTOS by Max Gillespie


















Resolven Bowling Success in 2018

Resolven was well represented recently in the West Glamorgan County Bowling Association semi-finals and finals days at Brynhyfryd BC green, Neath.


After many previous rounds played Home and Away, eleven Resolven Bowls Club members represented RBC in the Open and Senior Singles, Pairs, Triples or Fours.

They are Shane James, Lionel Stock, Adrian Bradley, Randall Sims, Hugh Lewis, Martin Addis, Shaun Kelly, Gareth Evans, Ieuan Ace, John Fryer and Aylwin Jones.

All mentioned above are in the Resolven Bowls Club photograph below.

Despite challenging bowling green conditions at Brynhyfryd due to a very long dry and hot period of weather, the standard of bowling was generally high.

This tournament was played over two days, therefore some successful participants in more than one event had to play 3 games of up to 3½ hours per  game, in one day with only 15 minutes rest allowed between games, which was challenging for senior bowlers and was the case with some Resolven BC members.

Shaun Kelly


Shaun Kelly, a valued member and Captain of Resolven BC this year, was successful against Martin Legg, BSC Landore, winning 15-14 in the Two Wood Singles Final to become West Glamorgan Champion.






In the Senior (60 years & Over) Fours event Resolven members Adrian Bradley, Randall Sims Martin Addis and Hugh Lewis were winners in the Semi-Final against Swansea Vale BC bowlers and Parc Llewellyn BC, Swansea bowlers in the 2018 Final.

In August the successful four will be travelling to Llandrindod Wells to represent West Glamorgan County in the Welsh Bowling Association Finals.

Adrian Bradley, Martin Addis, Randall Sims & Hugh Lewis


As County finalists in the Senior Triples, Adrian Bradley, Ieuan Ace and Gareth Evans will be playing in the Welsh Finals at Llandrindod Wells in August.

John Fryer, Aylwin Jones, Gareth Evans & Ieuan Ace


This is the second successive year that the County  Senior Fours event has been won by Resolven bowlers. Here we see last year’s winners.



~ ~ ~





Resolven Bowls Club play the sport home and away with mid-week and weekend games.

Resolven Bowling Green Pavilion

If you don’t like contact sports or have stopped playing them you can still enjoy playing the sport of Bowls. Play from the age of 8 to 88+ years of age.

Like any sport you have to work at it to play it well.

~ ~ ~


Hugh Lewis (RDN Team)




Resolven Chemist – The Future

The following text is information from Ross the Pharmacist at the Resolven Chemist to clarify their position after closure of the Resolven Surgery.


I have had many enquiries recently regarding the future of Davies Chemist in Resolven after the surgery in Resolven closes and moves to its new site in Glynneath.

I wish to reassure our customers and patients that it is our intention to remain in Resolven and continue to provide the village and surrounding areas with all its pharmacy needs.  I appreciate that we have fiercely loyal customers and would like to repay that loyalty by continuing to provide Pharmacy services long into the future as we have done for the last 29 years.

I have been fortunate enough to be the pharmacist in Resolven for the last 10 years, I have even made the village my home.  I will continue to put Resolven pharmacy forward to deliver new pharmacy services such as the flu vaccine service started last year and more recently ‘Choose Pharmacy‘.  It is important to me that the people of Resolven and the surrounding areas have access to all NHS pharmacy services, which include:

Dispensing NHS prescriptions

Stop smoking service

Medicine Use Reviews

Discharge Medication Reviews

MAR chart scheme

Emergency contraception

Emergency Supply service

Choose Pharmacy (minor ailments)


We also have other services available such as our free delivery service.


One of the biggest concerns that I am asked about is the ordering of repeat prescriptions.

I have foreseen that this was going to be a big worry for many patients.  As a result, for the last few years I have been perfecting a repeat prescription management service, with the backing of the Vale of Neath Practice, in anticipation of the surgery move.  The service involves Resolven pharmacy staff helping patients manage their repeat prescription re-ordering.  The advantages are that patients can re-order items in the pharmacy in Resolven, we will then take the orders to the new surgery in Glynneath and collect the prescriptions and dispense them ready for collection or delivery.  So, unless you have an appointment in the new health centre, you won’t need to go there, we’ll do all the back and fore.


As I have already mentioned we have worked hard in the last few years with selected patients to ensure the service is robust and fit for purpose.  I feel that it is a very effective way of managing and synchronising repeat prescriptions, reducing medicine waste and unnecessary hoarding of medicines at home.  Feedback from patients has been excellent and very encouraging.

Please pop into the pharmacy to find out more and even enrol now in anticipation of the surgery move.

I intend to have a prescription drop off box in the new surgery which will be emptied a few times a day.

Vale of Neath Health Centre/Surgery
{Austin-Smith:Lord, John Weaver Contractors}

So, if you’re in the surgery and have a prescription in your hand you can either bring it to us, as many patients do at present, or, you can drop the prescription into the box and collect the dispensed prescription in Resolven pharmacy later that day or have it delivered free of charge.


Finally, for those patients who find it difficult to get to the pharmacy through mobility or due to work commitments, we are launching a dedicated prescription re-order phone line 01639 711100.  Simply give us a call to re-order any repeat prescription from the surgery and we’ll do all the rest!


I would like to take this opportunity to thank all patients for their support.  I urge all patients to act now and talk to us about the best way we can help to manage your repeat prescriptions.  By doing this, by the time the new surgery is operational the disruption will be minimal, thank you.



Contact information:

Telephone 01639 710248



Compiled by Hugh Lewis (RDN Team)

Sardis Community Hall -Clubs for Youngsters




REV. FORTUNATO SANTOS – 077370769-57

REPORT from Public Meeting Held re. Bus Services and New Health Centre

Meeting held  in Resolven Welfare Hall on Friday the 13th of July

The meeting was attended by about 20 residents who were welcomed by South West Wales AM Mrs Suzy Davies.  She said that she had been involved with the original fight to save the Resolven surgery from closure but that fight was over and it was now a question of trying to improve access to the new health centre at Glynneath when it opens in the spring by ensuring that bus services are adequate.

N PT County Borough Councillor Des Davies said he had met with NPT Council transport officers who liaise with bus company chiefs. He has joined forces with all other councillors representing the Neath valley.

Des told the meeting that he was told First Cymru would be introducing a new time table from September but there is only one change proposed for local services and that was to move one bus time by 11 minutes. He will check to see if any further changes are proposed but because of the registration regulations, a certain period of notice must be given to the council before any changes come in and nothing has been proposed yet.

He said that after the bus company changed from a half hourly to an hourly service for Resolven in January, he had been in touch with Alex Davies who is the practice manager at the present Glynneath surgery and he will be running the new centre.

The practice wrote to First Cymru in February protesting about the cuts but the reply stated that there was not enough patronage to justify the half hourly service.

The practice will get back in touch when the new health centre is due to open to see if there could be an increased frequency of buses to match surgery times.

Des said that ABMu is behind schedule in drawing up its Transport Plan for the new health centre. When the new health centre at Briton Ferry was opened, extra buses were laid on for patients to get to it. Why not Resolven?

Des said that all they could do was push ABMu to produce the transport plan. He said they need to pull their finger out. People living in Abergarwed were also affected and there was a need to co-ordinate the bus services..

Des said that he had had talks with DANSA (Community bus service) but there was a danger that if they ran bus services in competition with First Cymru, FC will pull all service. At least there is still an hourly bus. The risk was that Dansa or a rival bus company would not be able to sustain an alternative service leaving people with nothing.

Local, Mrs Susan Elias, said that the existing service does not meet all the needs of villagers. People attending Neath Port Talbot hospital had a problem with getting buses once they are only hourly. Also, she said that the early service is so full that it is passing people in Tonna because there is not enough room. People with prams are also prevented from getting on because of space issues.

Des said that the police have stopped some of the buses in Tonna to check if they are too full. but they complied with the regulations

A gentleman who uses the buses wrote to the company and he had a reply saying that they will not revert back to having a half hourly service.

It was also stated that buses were not going up to Pont Walby and Ponthneathvaughan because the company says that there is no time for a turn around. Yet buses stop at Tonna for up to 5 minutes and also wait in Glynneath.

Susan also pointed out that First Cymru are operating buses along the main Neath to Port Talbot route every 15 minutes and they are often running empty.

Suzy said that with Dansa there would be a risk that if they operate too many commercial trips, they could affect their licence as they are a community bus service. She said that while they can plug gaps in services on commercial routes, they have to be careful of crossing a line and becoming a fully commercial service which would affect their registration.

Susan Elias  also pointed out that the Dansa buses travel into the estate where she lives but to catch a First bus, people had to get down to the main road. This would be a problem for some patients as they try to get to the new health centre.

Des said that nothing much could be done at present until ABMu produced their transport plan when people would be able to see exactly what is being proposed. Also, they need a firm date for the opening of the new health centre to try and co-ordinate bus services.

He said that once the centre is due to open, they can again make the case for a half hourly service because there would be a guaranteed additional patronage of the service.  While it was stated that someone had been told by the bus company that most of the users were using bus passes, Suzy pointed out that bus companies get paid for every journey made using a bus pass so they do get income from those journeys.

One lady pointed out that there was also a knock-on effect on people using the buses to get to work.  She said some people were getting to their place of work an hour before time because if they wait for the next bus, they would be late.  Coming home, some people are having to wait 45 minutes or more for the bus home as a result of the loss of the half hourly service.

Des said that all five councillors locally were working together to gather evidence to put before the bus companies.  Suzy told everyone to write in letters – she said a petition often counts as only one objection. She said that the more case studies of how people are affected, the stronger the arguments would be.

Des said that to date, the bus companies were only interested in profit. He said that NPT Council were carrying out some work on this themselves especially as some councils run their own bus services. He said if Briton Ferry could have extra services to take people to their new health centre, why couldn’t this happen for Resolven?

One of the suggestions made was that extra buses be put on at peak times when people are going to and from work and also perhaps to co-ordinate with surgery opening hours. The rest of the time, an hourly service would probably be adequate.

Des said that they need to see the ABMu transport plan asap so that they can make suggestions. But this required three to four months and then the bus company needed time to register new services. There may also be a consultation period for the new plan.

One man pointed out that bus services were needed to promote tourism, He said that the Neath Valley had many places of interest from the falls at Pontneathvaughan to the canal, the Aberdualis Falls and many walking and mountain biking routes.  Suzy said that this was a good point and that different budgets within Welsh Government could be sourced to provide funding for these services. The tourism minister may provide some funding with perhaps the health minister and local government minister providing more.

Des said that NPT officers had put the suggestion of peak hours services to the bus comany. They have suggested having a half hourly service between 8.30am to 11am and then later in the day for people coming home. He said that pressure needed to be put on bus companies.

Asked about subsidies from NPT council for bus services, Des said that they are used to provide services to communities that have no services at all.

Suzy said she would help by putting pressure on the bus companies especially as there are issues with overcrowding on some









Suzy’s P.A.  Jayne Isaac taking notes

And this is an update on how the new Vale of Neath Health Centre is progressing

Image by RDN photographer Mike Davies




Village Entrance Surprise, Carnival Day Parade & Field

Seen by incomers to Resolven Village – Local resident cleverly advertises the Carnival day.


‘INDONESIAN ARCHITECTS’ performing outside the St David’s Church Hall. 


The spectators wait for the Carnival Parade at the Square.



Zumba Band



At the Vaughan Park

Judges – Cllr. Aylwin Jones, Carole Hopkins & Christine Twaite


At the Bowling Green adjacent to the Carnival field

A sample of Welsh International bowling shirts used by Andrew Hopkins in California, Hong Kong, Israel, Ireland etc. Also shirts from Welsh International Stephen Allen.           A number of Resolven Bowls Club members have played Internationally for Wales .


Andrew Hopkins, Bowls Coach and Welsh International instructing a new bowler

Andrew Hopkins and Lionel Stock helping some new bowlers. Bowls is a sport that can be played from the age of 8 to 88.


Nigel James, Coach suggesting a different size bowl and Lionel Stock giving encouragement to a first time bowler.

Rev. Andrew Davies delivers a bowl, a day before he delivers his sermon. Looking on is Lionel Stock and RDN Editor Anita Morgan.
In the background Ieuan Ace encourages Marcia (the shop/Post Office) & friend on the green.

After opening the Carnival, Cllr Aylwin Jones with Father Andrew near the bowling green.


Congratulations to the Resolven Community Events Group for a most enjoyable day.


Presentation by

Hugh Lewis