"BETTWS, in the Cwmwd of Tir yr Hwndrwd, Cantref of Cron Nedd (now called the Hundred of Newcastle), County of GLAMORGAN, South Wales: a Curacy, not in charge, with the Vicarage of Newcastle, of the certified value of £37: Patron, The Crown; but it generally goes by the recommendation of the Member of the County: Church dedicated to St. David. The Resident Population of this Parish, in 1801, (consisting of the Higher and Lower Hamlets) was 306. The Money raised by the Parish Rates, in 1803, was £180..19..10, at 4s. in the Pound. It is 5 m. N. from Bridgend. This Parish contains 1000 Acres of inclosed Land. It is endowed with the great Tythes." From: A Topographical Dictionary of The Dominion of Wales by Nicholas Carlisle, London, 1811.



Here is a substantial reading list of books which relate to Glamorgan, either county or parish.

A contents list of the book The History of the Llynfi Valley has been provided by Daniel Verkys.

An index of the book Ogmore, Llynfi & Garw Valleys in Old Photographs has been provided by Huw Daniel

An index to Ogmore Valley Colliery Fatalities (1867-1914), has been provided by Huw Daniel.


Church History

Chapels Database - a list of all known non-conformist chapels or other non-Anglican religions in the parish

See Welsh Chapels and Churches for a photograph of the parish church


Church Records

For full and up-to-date details of their holdings see the sites of Glamorgan Record Office and/or West Glamorgan Archives

See Bap/Mar/Bur data on  FreeReg

The parish church is dedicated to St. David, is in the Benefice of St. Brides Minor with Bettws, and diocese of Llandaff. Details of the present incumbent of this benefice can be found at the Church in Wales website. The church can be found at grid reference SS899867.

Anglican Parish Registers Held at the Glamorgan Record Office, Cardiff
BaptismsMarriagesBurialsBannsBishops Transcripts
1725-19391722-1725, 1754-19631723-1950-1721-45, 1747-1821, 1823-37

Details of extant records on Archives Network Wales for the following;

  • Bettws Ecclesiastical Parish records "Bettws Ecclesiastical Parish records including registers of baptisms, 1722-1939; marriages, 1722-1963; burials, 1723-1950; banns, 1823-1908; services, 1878-1920; terriers, 1771-1906; civil and miscellaneous records, 1846-1926; churchwardens records, 1832-1940; parochial church council and easter vestry, 1921-1941; church organ isations, 1934-1937; charities, 1887-1939"

Modern Parishes & Chapels of Ease :-

The following Religious Institutions are covered in the Mormon International Genealogical Index (IGI) :-

  • Bettws, St. David - Marriages, 1814-1837; Christenings (BT's), 1813-1876
Non Conformist Registers Deposits
ChapelBaptismsMarriagesBurialsOS Map RefDeposited
Sardis Baptist1890-1890SS 89948691GRO
Congregational1785-9--SS 90098625PRO

GRO - Glamorgan Record Office, Cardiff
PRO - Public Record Office, London


Description & Travel

Bettws - on wikipedia

Various landscapes  - on People's Collection Wales

You can see pictures of Bettws which are provided by:



Transcript of complete name listing for Maesteg, with the parishes and villages of Cwmdu, Baidan, Bettws, Llangeinor, Llangynwyd, Nantyfyllon and Spelter, from Slaters Directory for 1880.



The transcription of the section for Bettws from The National Gazetteer (1868) provided by Colin Hinson.

Description of the parish from A Topographical Dictionary of Wales (1833) by Samuel Lewis.


Historical Geography

Some of the hamlets, towns and villages within this parish

  • Braichycymer
  • City
  • Coytrahen (See Llangynwyd)
  • Lletty Brongu


This diagram shows the position of this parish within the county of Glamorgan - click on this to see a full size diagram of the county



Parish map (Kain/Oliver)

 Tithe map of Betws, Glamorgan  - on People's Collection Wales

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SS892894 (Lat/Lon: 51.592969, -3.600297), Bettws which are provided by:


Names, Geographical

Places, villages, farms etc within Bettws as shown on the online parish map from the CD of Historic Parishes of England and Wales: an Electronic Map of Boundaries before 1850 with a Gazetteer and Metadata [computer file]. (Kain, R.J.P., Oliver, R.R.). (Extracted by Gareth Hicks)

  • Betws (63); Afon Garw; Bettws (village); Braich-y-cymmer; Brithdir; Bryngarw; Cefn-y-gelli; Celfydd Ifan; City; Coal Level(2); Coal Pits; Colliery; Coytrahen Ho.; Craig Walter; Craig-yr-hudol; Craig yr Hudol; Cwm ..?; Cwm Gwin?; Cwmdu Bach; Cwm Garw; Cwm Garw Fechan; Cynhordy; Darren Fawr; Foel Gwilym Hywel; GWR; Gwernllwyn; Lletty Brongu; Llynfi Valley; Moel Cynhordy; Moelgiliau; Mynydd Moelgilau; Nant-mwth; Plas-y-Bettws; Pont-y-Cymmer; Rhil ?; Shwt; Tor-y-fron; Ty-isaf; Tyle-coch; Ty'n-y-waun; Waun Tynewydd


There are many references to this area in the 15 million Welsh and English language articles from Welsh newspapers transcribed by the NLW and viewable on Welsh Newspapers Online
Below are English language articles that have been re-transcribed and extracted randomly to illustrate what is available, there are many that are not extracted here that include names of local people

  • From  The Cardiff Times 1st August 1874

BETTWS. PIC-NIC.—A pic-nic was held on Monday on a field adjoining Bettws, near Bridgend, which attracted a large number of people. The Coity brass band played waltzes, quadrilles, &c., under the leadership of Mr. John Richards. The people were much amused with the foot races, hurdle races, donkey races, etc. Several Aunt Sallys were earnestly pelted at and severely abused. A large number enjoyed themselves by playing "kiss in the ring," and others by throwing quoits. There were tea tables for refreshments to the hungry, and plenty of ginger-beer for the thirsty. The picnic was well attended with turnabouts, lottery tables, electrifying machines, weighing chairs, etc. No beer was allowed on the field. All passed off without any undue noise, and was well attended, considering it was the first attempt to get anything of the sort up at this romantic mountainous, and, until very lately, unpopulous district.

  •  From The Cardiff Times 14th September 1878

EISTEDDFOD AT BETTWS. On Monday, an eisteddfod was held at Bettws, near Bridgend. The chair was taken by Mr E. Plummer, colliery manager, Glyncorrwg, and the duties of conductor were carried out by Mr T. J. Evans, Hirwain. Mr R. Rees (Eos Morlais) adjudicated on the musical competitions, and Mr E. Thomas (E. ap Ieuan) filled the like office for the essays and poetry. The chief prize of £8, to the choir who should sing Dr Parry's Requiem, in commemoration of Ieuan Gwyllt, was won by Carmel Choir, Maesteg. The same choir was also successful in the competition on "Then round about the starry throne," and"Come, bounteous May." The brass band competition was decided in favour of the Gilvach Goch Band. .....(part extract).......



Llest Colliery, Garw Valley (Pontyrhyl) on the Welsh Coal Mines site



The Population of Bettws was as follows, and a more detailed breakdown is available.

1841 - 4381851 - 4211861 - 3711871 - 4041881 - 1,0251891 - 1,529

Public Records

Details of extant records on Archives Network Wales for the following;

  • Ogmore and Garw Urban District Council records  1903-1975     "Ogmore and Garw Urban District Council (Glamorgan) was formed in 1894........It took over the functions of Ogmore and Garw Local Board of Health. The Council's area of responsibility was the parishes of Bettws, Llandyfodwg and Llangeinor, ................................."


Details of extant records on Archives Network Wales for the following;

  • Bettws School Board records     " .......... comprising minute books, 1883-1903; cash book, 1899-1903"  
  • Mid Glamorgan Division Elementary/Primary schools records    " .... including log books and admission registers relating to ....... Bettws National school, 1901-1922; ..... Braichycymer (Bettws Pontycymer) school, 1903-1963...."