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If Google Street View is available, the image is from the best available vantage point looking, if possible, towards the location of the monument. Where it is not available, the satellite view is shown instead.
Latitude: 51.633 / 51°37'58"N
Longitude: -3.7414 / 3°44'29"W
OS Eastings: 279571
OS Northings: 194127
OS Grid: SS795941
Mapcode National: GBR H5.89MF
Mapcode Global: VH5GW.36DY
Entry Name: Pontrhydyfen Aqueduct / Viaduct
Scheduled Date: 7 December 1978
Source ID: 616
Cadw Legacy ID: GM393
Schedule Class: Water Supply and Drainage
Period: Post Medieval/Modern
County: Neath Port Talbot (Castell-nedd Port Talbot)
Community: Cwmavon (Cwmafan)
Built-Up Area: Pontrhydyfen
Traditional County: Glamorgan
The monument is a large stone four span bridge originally constructed by John Reynolds as an aqueduct carrying water across the Afan valley to supply the waterwheel powering the blast furnace at Cwmavon Ironworks. It was later converted to a viaduct. It measures c. 135m in length, is over 23m high and c. 4m wide, and comprises four round headed arches whose piers are splayed rectangular in section.
When completed, in 1827, it was the largest aqueduct in Britain and, as an impressive engineering feat, became a local tourist attraction. Pontrhydyfen was the birthplace of Richard Burton, and the monument is also valued for iconic photographs showing the actor walking across the bridge. Today the bridge carries a path and cycleway.
The monument is of national importance for its potential to enhance our knowledge of early 19th century industrial engineering and technology. Architectural details concerning chronology and building techniques were identified during conservation works undertaken during 2016-2017 and the structure retains strong probability of the presence of associated archaeological features and deposits. The importance of the monument is enhanced by group value in association with surviving industrial historic features including ironworks, tramroads and workers housing.
The scheduled area comprises the remains described and areas around them within which related evidence may be expected to survive.
Other nearby scheduled monuments