Request for information on Carnegie Hall

Committee member, Sandra Davies, is working on a special edition of “Hanes” based on the history and use of the Carnegie Hall on Evelyn Road.  If you have any anecdotes, special memories – anything, about the building or the library that was housed there in the past, or any other activities that have taken place in the hall,  please get in touch via this website, our Facebook page, or simply use snail mail or the telephone to contact any of the committee members.  Don’t let your reminiscence be lost.

Wednesday, 10th June, marks the 115th anniversary of the opening of the hall by Lady Blanche Evans.




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VE Day 1945 and 2020 in Skewen

The residents of Graham’s Terrace are shown celebrating VE Day in 1945.

Do you have any photographs of Skewen taken on May 8th, 1945?  If so, please share them with us so that they may be archived for future generations to look at and use for research.

If there are any celebrations in your street this year to mark the 75th anniversary of VE Day, and it is safe to do so, please take some photos and send them to us.

Here are the first photographs we have received for VE Day in 2020 –  showing how the residents of Pant y Sais, Jersey Marine celebrated, and how Picton Terrace, Wern  and Winifred Roads  decorated their houses.  Do you have photographs to share?




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Mystery Photographs

The Society has a number of “mystery” photographs – photographs with little or no information about them.  It would help us if you would look at the photographs that will be posted in the coming weeks  and if you have any information about them please get in touch.  Keep scrolling down – new photographs are posted at the end every week.




Photograph 1: first name might be Howard and may be related to the  Thomas family, Highland Farm, Skewen.





Photograph 2: Skewen Ladies’ Choir


Photograph 2 has now been identified as a Skewen Ladies’ choir.  Some names have been supplied via Facebook – can you name anyone – email and let us know.





Photograph 3 Dance



Photograph 3 was taken at the Llandarcy Institute.  If you can name anyone – get in touch.  Some names have been supplied.



Photograph  4: Who is this little boy?


Photograph 4

Who is this little boy?  The shot was taken outside what became Knoyle’s Cafe and is now part of Zafran Indian restaurant.  Date would be c. 1900.






Photograph 5

We have now been able to establish that this is a group of poppy sellers, probably photographed in Evelyn Road.   Names have been provided except for number 2, and still no surname for number 5.  Can you help?

Photograph 5  1. Lena Richards 2. ? 3. Glenys Rees 4. Morfydd Griffiths 5. Muriel ?









Photographs 6 and 6A:    Bill Bevan Cottages.  Who was Bill Bevan and where were these cottages located?

This mystery has been solved – thanks to Facebook followers. This is Rose Cottage part of the Gwernllwyncwyth House estate in Llansamlet.  At one time Bill Beavan lived here with his wife Phoebe.

Photograph 7

This is another unknown group.  What are they celebrating who are they?

We have now been able to identify several of the people but still do not know the occasion – so do you know?

Photograph 7

Photograph 8:   where is it?   Who is the man walking in the bottom left of the photo- back view only so difficult to identify?

This cottage has now been identified as Coed Saeson Cottage in Llansamlet.

Photograph 8


Photograph 9: A holiday group.  Can you name anyone?

We still don’t know the occasion, but several names have been supplied.  But who are numbers 7,12 and 13?

Photograph 9: Holiday group


Photograph 10:  It’s a plan for a house in Lon Las – but which house?    The answer is Lon Las House.


Photograph 11:  An unknown group of women, possibly a committee in World War II taken in the grounds of Brynderwen House.  Some names have now been supplied for this group but we still have more to be identified, and still do not know the occasion.


Photograph 12:  Possibly a group of Neath Abbey W.I. members celebrating St David’s Day.  We only have the names for two of the group – can you supply more please?

Photograph 13: Unknown group of young women taken in 1939. Who are they?

Photograph 13: Who are these young girls?

PHOTOGRAPH 14: what is this building and where is it?  A suggestion is that this was the cricket ground near Cwrt y Betws Farm.

Photograph 14: Where / what is this building?

PHOTOGRAPH 15: We know that this is a photograph of the Skewen Snooker Club but only have three names – 2  Arthur Lewis   5  Sid Morgans  7  Bert Coram and  8 George Brown. Can you name the other members of the team?

Photograph 15: Skewen Snooker Club

PHOTOGRAPH 16:  A family group – are they named Sully and did the father work as a registrar in Neath?

Photograph 16: Is this the Sully family, what are their names?


PHOTOGRAPH 17:  We have the names for numbers 1 to 5 in this group, but who are 6 to 9 and was it a special occasion?

Photograph 17: can you provide the names for numbers 6 to 9?


PHOTOGRAPH 18: Who is this WW2 soldier?  He may have served on the batteries in Jersey Marine.

Photograph 18: Unknown WW2 soldier


PHOTOGRAPH 19: This is listed as “old cinema group”.  Was it taken at a local cinema, if so which one and when?  What was the occasion?  Can you name anyone?

PHOTOGRAPH 19: Old cinema group – which cinema, when and what was the occasion?


PHOTOGRAPH 20: Unknown location – do you know where this photograph was taken? Solved – Taillwyd Road viewed from Longford Road.

Photograph 20: Taillwyd Road

PHOTOGRAPH 21: This photograph was donated by Miriam Philips (newsagent in White Gates) but no information was provided.  Can you name anyone and was this is a committee, a society etc. ?

Photograph 21: Who are these people?

PHOTOGRAPH 22: A photograph taken at the 1938 Skewen Carnival – but who are the children?  Do you know anyone?

Photograph 22: Looking for a Swimming Pool – Skewen Carnival 1938


PHOTOGRAPH 23: This has been identified as a Coedffranc Parish council group.  All are now named apart from nos 1 and 3.

Photograph 23: A Coedffranc Council group.  All have now been named apart from nos. 1 and 3.


PHOTOGRAPH 24:  This shows Mr G Jones at his retirement presentation.  What was Mr Jones’s first name?  We can name three men in this photograph can you help us identify the others?

Photograph 24: Retirement of G Jones (no. 4). no.6 Ben Jones no.7 R B Southall. Can you name nos. 1,2,3,5,8,and 9?

PHOTOGRAPH 25: Another unknown group from our archives.  This one dates from c1945 – early 50’s. We can name four ladies only and have no idea if they were a committee, part of an organisation etc.  Can you solve this mystery?

Photograph 25: 1 Mrs Annie Jenkins (agricultural stores), 7 Mrs Helen Donnie or Dobbie, Mrs Jones (Bradford House, St John’s Terrace), 33 Mrs Elsie James ( Dynevor Road). Who are the other ladies?


PHOTOGRAPH 26: Taken in the Llandarcy Institute – it appears to be a play.  Are you able to tell us more about the production and can you name nos 1 -3, 5,  7 – 10 and 12?

Photograph 26: 1 – 3? 4 Mrs Fair  5?  6 Annie Jenkins  10 ? 11 Marjorie Daymond 12? 13 Enid Mae Thomas 14 Margaret Wilshire 15 Jean McKenzie


PHOTOGRAPH 27: This was taken in 1926 in Bethlehem Road and shows soup kitchen helpers – but who are they?

Photograph 27: Soup kitchen helpers in Bethlehem Road, 1926






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Thursday night clapping for the NHS

Here are some photographs that were sent of the clapping on 9th April and 16th April.  Residents of Pant y Sais, Jersey Marine managed to combine the Thursday night clap with Easter bonnets on the 9th and balloons on the 16th.

Here they are on the April 23rd clapping photos and a resident on Hill Road, Neath Abbey has a novel way of thanking the NHS and care workers.

More photographs from Pant y Sais for Thursday, May 7th, 14th, 21st and 28th.





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Lockdown Skewen images

The society asked you to send in your photographs of Skewen in Lockdown and here are the results:-




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Award from Tesco

We are delighted to confirm that the Society has been awarded a £1000 grant under the Tesco ‘Bags of Help ’ community funding scheme. Many thanks to all those who contributed to this success by choosing to vote for Skewen & District Historical Society with their blue shopping tokens.

The award will be used for the benefit of members – more details to follow.

The Society would like to thank Tesco for its inclusion in the scheme.

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What’s at the back of your drawer/cupboard?

With many of us facing a long period at home, perhaps now is the time to sort through those little used drawers,  cupboards and boxes to see if you find anything of interest for local historians.  It may be a photograph, document, map etc. which you could  scan and send to us now, or if you don’t have the capability to do that, just put the item to one side and pass it to any member of the Society when it is safe to make contact.

If sending photographs, please add as much information as you can – date, names of people shown, location, event.

Many people have traced their family history – do you have an interesting story you would like to share – we can publish it in our newsletter “Hanes”.

So search those drawers and cupboards and see what you find.


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Library opens in the Carnegie Monday, 9th March

Having closed at the New Road location on February 22nd, the library finally reopened in the Carnegie Hall this morning, 9th March.

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Skewen Library closes on New Road

Skewen Library is moving from its present location on New Road to the Carnegie Hall on Evelyn Road.  Today, Saturday 22nd February,  was its last day at the New Road location.  Here are some photographs to mark the occasion:



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Replacement Memorial Tree Planted in Skewen Park

As part of its WW1 commemoration programme, the Society planted two Acer Rubrum October Glory trees in the Memorial Park on March 17th, 2017.  Unfortunately one of the trees was vandalised and died.  This month a replacement tree was planted which we hope will thrive.



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