Table Tennis in Resolven

Table Tennis has been played in Resolven since the 1950’s at both the Miners’ Welfare and George Kent factory.


Some of the Welfare players: John Wicks, Ken Lewis, Denzil Sandry, Evan John Evans.

  Viv Hill, Denny Funning, Ron Rees, Len Jones, Selwyn Twaite.

Also seen L and R at end of top row—Fred Monk and Ces Funning

The George Kent team in 1958 included Ivor Lewis, Hopkin Richards, William Thomas, Ron Davies, and Glyn Vivien

In the 1960’s & 70’s Resolven YMCA carried on the tradition under the leadership of Don Fearn and Bill Owen who entered a team in the Swansea League, such was the success that very soon there were as many as 7 teams playing from the YMCA. In this time they won every division from 1 – 7 the only title to elude them being the Premier.

John Fryer, Dennis Bailey, Godfrey Brown,

Ken Guard, Glyn Davies, Royston Stock, Ken Davies. Keith Jones

There were so many players it is hard to remember them all but they included:

 Rennison Edwards, Glyn Howells, Royston Stock, Keith Arnold, Conway Rogers, Keith Jones, Idris James, Paul Rees, Keri Guard, Peter Guard, Godfrey Brown, Dennis Bailey, Tony Sharpe, John Fryer, Ken Lewis, Len Jones, Ken & Glyn Davies, Terry Edwards Bert Geoghan, David Beynon, Gareth Evans. If anyone from these eras knows of more please let us know.

In 1977 due to the declining interest in the YMCA, 2 teams moved to the Cam Gears Sports and Social Club where we are still playing. Players at that time were Gareth Evans, Paul Rees, Keri Guard, Ken Davies, John Fryer, Tony Sharpe, Terry Edwards.

The club runs a thriving social night on Mondays (6 – 9) where players of all abilities and ages play each other and have some good exercise the club has 4 tables and supplies the bats and balls, if you want to try it out.   For anyone interested in playing an alternative sport which can help to keep you healthy and can be played by all ages from 8 – 80 you might consider table tennis as a social evening or if you are really interested you could progress to playing in the Swansea League and even further afield depending on your ability.  We run 4 teams in the Swansea League- one in the Premier division, two in division 1 and one in division 2. (Besides Resolven residents we have players from the Neath area, Hirwaun, Merthyr and Tredegar.)

With so many players having played for our club it is rewarding to see that they have been recognised further afield such as Natasha Rees of Cwmgwrach who went on to represent Wales at a Commonwealth Games in India. The club has had 2 wheelchair players in Martin Evans (Tonna) and Neil Robinson (Laleston) who have represented Great Britain at various Paralympics and have won medals. Neil is now a coach for the British Paralympics table tennis team.

Martin Evans and Keith Jones with Betty Gray MBE (President of Swansea League

Players have also represented the Swansea League in the Welsh League including Gareth Evans, Randall Sims, Morgan Siddley and Ceri Higgon.


***Gareth has represented West Wales as a director on the board of Table Tennis Wales and for a number of years organised and ran the Welsh League Championship. He is currently secretary for the Swansea League.

As secretary of the Cam Gears table tennis club he would like to have more Resolven residents take up the sport either socially or with a view to play in the Leagues. He has been playing for 57 years and would like to pass some of his experience on to new players and old players if they would like to return to the game— Emphasis being on enjoyment, keeping moderately fit and meeting new people.

His telephone number  is 01639 710475, mob 07854032758.

 Email:  gareth_evans3

Some of the Monday night group in Cam Gears Club:

BACK ROW- John Jones, Bob Cutting, Nick Arnold, Paul Gillespie

FRONT ROW- Dai Davies,Gareth Evans, Richard Norton









Caretaker/Cleaner Needed

Resolven Community  Council has a vacancy for the above post.

Duties include opening and closing the Community Centre when required and general cleaning.

For further details and job description please contact the clerk by phone or email:

Clerc i’r Cyngor (Clerk to the Council)–Cheryl Payne

6, Llys Bethania, Railway Terrace, Resolven. Sa11 4HG

Tel: 01639 711139

Mob: 07814 777854

Applications to be received by 28th February 2018


                            Resolven Community Centre







Winter Returns to the Brecon Beacons





I took the  above images from the village of Defynnog on January the 2nd. 

Mike Davies 




Super Blood Moon Over Vale of Neath

Jan 31st —the super moon rose in the UK’s night skies and coincided with a supermoon, making it appear 14 percent brighter.  There is a supermoon when a full moon orbits closest to earth and a  blood moon is just another name for a full moon that’s going through a total eclipse. The nickname refers to the moon’s rusty-reddish tint caused by the reflection of sunlight, during the eclipse. Many viewers in certain parts of the world were blessed with seeing a lunar eclipse but not here in the UK


This image was taken over the Vale of Neath, and I was fortunate as we had heavy cloud, and when the moon was rising the clouds parted allowing me a fantastic view of our nearest celestial neighbour.

Mike Davies











Jobs Vacancies at Building Blocks



We currently have a number of vacancies at Building Blocks. 

The link to our website and the vacancies is below.


Ceri Pritchard (Manager)

Social Group For Ex-Miners and their Families

The CISWO Social group which meets in the Welfare Hall in Resolven is currently inviting new members to join.

The group meets at 10.30am every other Tuesday.

The next meeting will be held on Tuesday 13th February 2018.

Activities include guest speakers, quizzes, bingo and free day trips.

The group is supported by CISWO (Coal Industry Social Welfare Organisation) which is a registered Charity (no 1015581) and members must either have worked in the mining industry themselves or have been married to an ex-mineworker.

For further information please call Claire on 01443 485233

What species of birds visit your garden?


 MIKE DAVIES           I am very fortunate to have a garden on the edge of a field in which I get a variety of birds visit the feeders.  The changing seasons will bring in different species, although Blue Tits and the like will visit all year, and often build a nest in the bird box, and I have been blessed to see the youngsters fledge.



 I always keep a look out to see if “Woody” will return, as he has been visiting for many years.  Woodpeckers  can live up to 11 years, but later in the year they will bring their youngsters here to feed, and it is often the youngsters that will visit throughout the year,


Anoher species I love are the long-tailed tits they tend to arrive like a group of locusts.   They feed on/off throughout the day.  They are  pretty birds.


I have to watch out for the Sparrowhawk–a small bird of prey.  adapted for hunting birds in confined spaces like dense woodland, so gardens are an ideal hunting ground for them especially if there youngsters ready to fledge the nest. I happened to look out one morning and there he was on top of the shed waiting for the opportunity to attack. After taking this picture he was soon off.







Starlings are in decline, I used to have many over the years, but the last 2 years nothing then the other  afternoon I heard a commotion in the garden and to my surprise there were many starlings with their young.On route to their nesting place, the young were needing food and what better stop- over for 2 days than in my garden?

Here is the result of that afternoon, as you can see the parent bird was reluctant to feed the youngster till he/she settled down.

I am sure RDN readers would be delighted to see the birds in YOUR  garden.  Why not send them to us/

Here is the short but interesting video of the starlings in action in my garden!  Click on link below

MIKE DAVIES (story and pictures)




Resolfen History Society February Meeting




Meeting begins at 7: OO PM in



Membership: £10 (including refreshments)









Good News from Library

  Starting on Wednesday January 17th the library will be open from 5-7 every Wednesday evening 

We hope that this will benefit our customers that are unable to access the library during the day due to work commitments-we now have new up-to-date computers with windows 10 and colour A3 printer and scanner as well as our usual photocopying and printing facilities

Maureen Bradley

Cathy Hadley

(Library volunteers)

Celebrations for Stan


Stan Crawley is regarded by many as having Resolven roots, after spending over 60 years in Resolven, but he was brought up four miles up the valley in ‘the Lamb’ in Glynneath. Born on 13th January 1928, one of five children, he had three brothers, Alwyn, Edwin and Dai and a sister Moreen. Sadly, Moreen and Dai are no longer with us, Edwin lives n Bournemouth and was unable to attend but Alwyn and his wife Gloria who live in Glynneath attended brother Stan’s celebrations.

Stan lost his Dad when he was eleven years old and as a teenager, did a variety of jobs in the locality including working in a butchers shop until he received his National Service papers (which was normal practice for young men in the 1940s up until the late 1950s).

Stan already had an early interest in the Services as he had joined the TA’s (Territorial Army) when he was old enough to do so.

During his three years in the Army he spent time in Palestine and has medals to show for his efforts in the Services which he has proudly displayed when he has attended the Remembrance Services at Resolven.

However, Stan’s Army duties were cut short when he and a great many others were ordered (by the Government) to return to ‘do their duty’ and work ‘down the mines’ as coal had become a very precious commodity for the country.

He married Stella Totterdell in 1953 at St David’s Church, Resolven.

Stella’s father was the local Policeman and the name of Sergeant Totterdell is still well spoken of by older residents, who were the generation of young men growing up in Resolven. They remember him as being fair but very firm, with a ‘no nonsense’ attitude and strict manner that seemed to work at that time.

They lived in Rugby Road with Stella’s parents until such time (around about 1958) they were able to move into their new home, a ‘newly built’ semi detached house nearby. This was convenient for Stella and Stan as they both worked in Resolven.

Stan worked in Cam Gears for most of his working life until he retired early to care for Stella.

Stella worked for many years in the Employment Office in Commercial Road (better known as the local Job Exchange) until she gave up due to ill health.

In his earlier years Stan was an active sportsman, playing football and cricket, later becoming a ‘golfing man’ and a regular visitor to Glynneath Golf Course.

Stella has not enjoyed good health over the years but Stan has always been by her side giving his full support.

They have been able to enjoy many holidays and have lovely memories of being together, in this country and abroad, travelling around in the car towing their caravan.

Stan and Stella now reside in the Hollins Care Centre, Cimla, Neath and are happy and settled and still content just to be together and take life as it comes.


On Friday, 12th January, 2018, the Mayor of Neath Port Talbot, Councillor Mr Dennis Keogh visited the Hollins Care Home to give his congratulations and best wishes to Stan on his 90th.


Stan and Stella have two children, a daughter Susan (married to Peter) and a son Stephen, (married to Pam). They have two grandchildren, Michael and Rachel.

Recently there has been a new addition to the family as Stephen’s son Michael and his wife Kat are now proud parents to 5 month old Matilda, a new great grand-daughter for Stan and Stella.

On Saturday, 13th January 2018, the family held a special 90th birthday celebration for Stan at the Glyn Clydach Coach house. The family and close friends came from Glasgow, Dorset, Cwmafan, Glynneath and the Resolven area.




There was a gatecrasher to Stan’s Birthday Party

Gatecrasher – Hugh{SeanHL}





Stan and Stella have been married a long time, over 60 years in fact and are a devoted couple who have successfully faced all of life’s problems together.

It was heart warming to see them both looking well and happy and enjoying Stan’s special celebration birthday with family and friends.

Many congratulations Stan and well done on your 90th.

From the RDN team

Lorna and Hugh Lewis