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Taff1918

Six Bells Colliery Aerial Ropeway

I have only visited Abertillery once and that was so long ago I can barely remember it.  It must have been sometime in early 1949 when I was only a toddler.  However, these memories come back to me as small vivid cameo scenes.  For reasons that only more recently I've been able to appreciate why the visit was not a happy one.  The stay was very brief!

The journey on the train was very long.  My father, much to the annoyance of my mother, would on long stops, jump out and take me down to the engine and talk to the driver.  This really irritated my mother because I would return smelling of steam and smoke.  ďWhat do you need to talk to them for?Ē sheíd go on.  I guess that he felt a sort of comradery with them seeing as at that time worked as a signaller on the new British Railways.

We finally arrived at night to my grandparentís house which Iím pretty sure was 5 Richmond Road, Six Bells.  The greetings were not particularly warm.  When I got up the next day and looked out of the bedroom window my attention was immediately drawn to all these buckets on a cable going up and down the hill.  I was totally fascinated by it all.  Where did they come from where did they go?  This sighting is really indelibly etched in my memory!  The buckets would have to have been the Six Bells Colliery Aerial Ropeway.

I remember my Grandfather sitting in a chair by some sort of cast iron fireplace.  He wore an open neck collarless shirt and bracers.  He was unshaven and looked very grumpy!  He was quite scary!  Grandmother Minnie wasnít a lot better.

It must have been a Saturday morning when my young uncle Ron, he must have been 15 then, had been delegated the job of taking me to the cinema.  I remember that the walk seemed to be pretty much downhill.  It had had been raining the road was rough and we spent a lot of time walking round deep potholes full of black water.  The movie house seemed to be more like a village hall.  There were freestanding chairs and the projector was in the middle of the room.  Iíve no idea what the film was but it was in black and white in the Charlie Chaplin genre.

When we got back I found my parents in the bedroom which gave me another chance to look at these buckets going up and down the hill.  My mother was in a pretty bad mood and said ďWeíre not staying here Iím goingĒ!  With that said the bags were packed and off we went.  Much later on I gathered there had been quite a row between my mother and grandmother.  My mother vowed she would never return and never did.

The one particular thing that really sticks in my mind from that visit is the aerial ropeway buckets going up and down the mountain.
stoob

Six Bells Colliery Aerial Ropeway

Hi Taff

Regards your topic, go online to the out of the blue artifacts site.
Scroll down right hand side until you come to Six Bells Colliery Aerial Ropeway.
Taff1918

Re: Six Bells Colliery Aerial Ropeway

stoob wrote:
Hi Taff

Regards your topic, go online to the out of the blue artifacts site.
Scroll down right hand side until you come to Six Bells Colliery Aerial Ropeway.

Thanks Stoob,
Yes Iíve studied that already and also the Arael School Warm Turn Six Bells.  It was the piece about the 1931 Survey over the concerns of the residents of the dangers of the Flight being too close to the school and other residences that took my eye.  A report on the Survey showed that over a period of just a few months during that year 11 Buckets had fallen from the Flight, 4 of those fell in close proximity to the Arael School!  This is one of the reasons I was wondering which school my Father attended.  Iím still to pursue that avenue of research.  The Gwent Archives in Ebbw Vale donít look too promising though.
stoob

Six Bells Colliery Aerial Ropeway

No don't believe the Arael School records are over the Archives, most of the other schools are, if it's a Richmond Road address probably Bryngwyn School though.
I've got two Bryngwyn booklets from 1931/32 are those the years ?
Taff1918

Re: Six Bells Colliery Aerial Ropeway

stoob wrote:
No don't believe the Arael School records are over the Archives, most of the other schools are, if it's a Richmond Road address probably Bryngwyn School though.
I've got two Bryngwyn booklets from 1931/32 are those the years ?

My Father Clifford John Castree was born on 30/10/1918 in 8 Preston Street, Abertillery.  He would have left school at the age of 14 which would have been at the end of 1932 or beginning of 1933.  Whilst I know the Castree family did reside at 5 Richmond Road Iíve no idea when they moved there.  It would be great if you came up trumps with this one.
stoob

Six Bells Colliery Aerial Ropeway

No joy with those Bryngwyn books Taff, he wasn't mentioned doesn't mean he wasn't there though. See if I can find out when they were living Richmond Road when I go to Newport next week.
Did find Ron Cynewulf Robbins though, he was born Alma Street, Abertillery, made it in Canada after his heroics in WW2, Bryngwyn not a logical place to look for him.
Taff1918

Re: Six Bells Colliery Aerial Ropeway

stoob wrote:
No joy with those Bryngwyn books Taff, he wasn't mentioned doesn't mean he wasn't there though. See if I can find out when they were living Richmond Road when I go to Newport next week.
Did find Ron Cynewulf Robbins though, he was born Alma Street, Abertillery, made it in Canada after his heroics in WW2, Bryngwyn not a logical place to look for him.

Many thanks.  As ever always grateful for your input.  I guess that if he lived for any length of time in Preston Street he would have gone to one of a number of schools more in the centre of Abertillery.  Which one I wonder?  I guess there are 3 possibilities for Abertillery listed in the Gwent Archives.  Abertillery Church Mixed School, Blaentillery School and the Gelli Crug Mixed School.  All appear to have Admission Registers that cover the period my father would have attended school.  Any thoughts?
stoob

Six Bells Aerial Ropeway

Hi Taff

Had a look at the electoral registers 1922 - 1955, unfortunately there wasn't any during WW1 and that's the earliest they have in Newport after the war.
Don't know where the Castree family lived from the date of your fathers birth until they turn up at 5 Richmond Road on the 1930 register and they were still living there in 1955.
They weren't living on Preston Street (1922 - 1930).
William Edgar and Minnie registered at 5 Richmond in 1930, and for the following 2 years a couple name of Henry and Alice Crook were lodging there.
Bearing in mind no registers 1938 -1944 a P. Castree is on the 1945 register. The following year Pearl J Castree is registered and in 1947 Violet L Castree.
In 1948 Pearl J Hopkins and husband Jacob H Hopkins live with William and Minnie.
Violet returns in 1950 and Robert K Castree is listed in 1952.
In 1954 Frank and Betty Ann Wallace lodge with William and Minnie.
Only had time to look up to 1955, let you know if I sight them between 1922 and 1930, only then can you surmise the early schools attended.
Taff1918

Re: Six Bells Aerial Ropeway

stoob wrote:
Hi Taff

Had a look at the electoral registers 1922 - 1955, unfortunately there wasn't any during WW1 and that's the earliest they have in Newport after the war.
Don't know where the Castree family lived from the date of your fathers birth until they turn up at 5 Richmond Road on the 1930 register and they were still living there in 1955.
They weren't living on Preston Street (1922 - 1930).
William Edgar and Minnie registered at 5 Richmond in 1930, and for the following 2 years a couple name of Henry and Alice Crook were lodging there.
Bearing in mind no registers 1938 -1944 a P. Castree is on the 1945 register. The following year Pearl J Castree is registered and in 1947 Violet L Castree.
In 1948 Pearl J Hopkins and husband Jacob H Hopkins live with William and Minnie.
Violet returns in 1950 and Robert K Castree is listed in 1952.
In 1954 Frank and Betty Ann Wallace lodge with William and Minnie.
Only had time to look up to 1955, let you know if I sight them between 1922 and 1930, only then can you surmise the early schools attended.

My goodness Stoob you really have been working on this one.  I canít thank you enough.

It seems that almost all of the Castree family have lived there with the exception of my father!

Pearl - Born 1920 - Married Jacob H Hopkins in 1947 and had 3 children - David EJ 1947, Shirley L 1948 & Brian 1954.  Pearl died in 2000.

Violet Ė Born 1926 - Married Frank H Fowler in 1951 and had 3 children - Robert J 1952, Stephen F 1955 & Phillip J 1960.  It was Frank who registered the death of my grandfather William Edgar in January 1991.  Violet died 1998.

Robert K (Kenneth) - Born 1930 appears to have married twice.  Nita P Myres in 1952 and Pauline R Wright in 1972.  He had one child, Gareth in 1957 from his first marriage and non from the second.  Ken died in 1982.

The only one you havenít mentioned is Ron.  Ronald Edward Ė Born 1934 - Married Lynette Andrews in 1957 and seemingly has had 4 children all girls.  It was Ron who registered the death of Minnie when she died at 5 Richmond Road, Six Bells, Abertillery on the 10th March 1973.  It begs the question as to why her husband my grandfather, William Edgar was unable to do it?

Once again very many thanks.

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