Wisdom of Life

Celebration of the Saving of Llangyndeyrn and the Gwendraeth Fach Valley


In the late 1950s and early 1960s, the then Swansea Corporation developed proposals for a dam and reservoir to be built in the Gwendraeth Fach valley. The proposed reservoir would have then supplied water to the Swansea conurbation.

The proposals involved the construction of a dam which would have resulted in the flooding of productive farmland, several farmhouses and a number of houses close to and within the village of Llangyndeyrn, and also upstream to the village of Porthyrhyd. Indeed, under the proposals, the village of Llangyndeyrn itself would have been greatly affected with a large dam wall built on its eastern flank. Homes would have been lost, livelyhoods destroyed and the community torn apart. The village itself and the local community would have been essentially shattered by such a scheme.

Understandably the community was alarmed and angry with the proposed scheme and established a Defence Committee to fight the Swansea Corporation’s plan. In those days, successfully opposition to a Government establishment was not common (as was the case in North Wales with the drowning of the village of Tryweryn to form Llyn Celyn reservoir in 1965). The Defence Committee for Llangyndeyrn organised itself and fought a long hard battle against the proposals which culminated in an intense struggle in 1963 involving a number of confrontations between both parties in the village of Llangyndeyrn itself.

Thankfully, after significant local opposition, the Swansea Corporation were forced to reconsider their proposal and opted instead for developing a reservoir at Rhandirmwyn forming the now Llyn Brianne dam.

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