7. The Powder Trail audio trail, Pontneddfechan, Waterfall Country

 


Start / Finish points: Waterfall Country
Distance: 3.0 km / 1.86 miles
Difficulty: Easy
Facilities at startpoint: Accomodation, Toilets, Pub, Post Office, Shop, National Park Information Centre, Bus Stop, Car Parking, Trekking Centre, Cafe

 

 

The trail follows a former tram road in the wooded, Afon Mellte river gorge - a designated Special Area of Conservation. It passes the ruins of the former gunpowder works and the watermills that once powered the site.

After heavy rain some sections of path can become muddy. There are several walk options for this site which includes a 1km walk to a wide footbridge across the Mellte which overlooks a weir and mill ‘leats’. A 400 metre accessible walk, with a softer surface, is possible upstream. The route is level with a stone-dust surface. At several points along the trail are audio information boxes –just turn the handle and listen to the story of the local industrial heritage and wildlife!

 

Useful information:

Nearest town/Village: Pontneddfechan, Glyn-Neath

OS Grid Reference: Explorer Map OL 12 or Landranger Map 160 – SN 911 080

Contact: Waterfalls centre, Pontneddfechan on 01639 721795 and National Park Visitor Centre on 01874 623366.

Toilets: There are public toilets near the Waterfalls Centre, Pontneddfechan although the closest disabled access toilets are at Cwm Porth car park near Ystradfellte (Grid Ref SN 928 125) or at Aberdare. There is a disabled access toilet located in the community hall (part-time opening hours).

 

Powder Trail

This audio trail, produced by Forestry Commission Wales, reveals what life was like working at the Gunpowder Works at Pontneddfechan. Hear how the workers had to dress to minimise the risk of explosions, what happened when there was an explosion in the pellet press and the important role that the horses played transporting materials along the tramway.

 

You can choose to listen to the following audio tracks now, download them individually on to your computer or Download complete audio trail (9.22 MB) on to your computer as zip files, unzip them using appropriate software, and copy the mp3 files on to your mp3 player, i pod or mobile phone.

  • Precautions in the mill - track 1            Listen | Download
  • Rules, rules, rules - track 2                  Listen | Download
  • Explosion at the pellet press - track 3    Listen | Download
  • The horse's tale - track 4                    Listen | Download
  • The gunpowder recipe - track 5            Listen | Download

We value your feedback! Please let us know what you think of these audio trails by using the online feedback form. Thank you! 

BBNPA has used reasonable endeavours in the preparation of this trail but cannot guarantee the accuracy of the information contained within it. The route suggested in this trail is for guidance only and does not constitute advice or recommendation.  BBNPA gives no warranties, either express or implied, regarding the availability, suitability or safety of the route described and following the route is undertaken entirely at the individuals own risk.  BBNPA reserves the right to alter the content of the trail at any time without prior notice.

 

Further Information

After heavy rain some sections of path can become muddy. There are several walk options for this site which includes a 1km walk to a wide footbridge across the Mellte which overlooks a weir and mill ‘leats’. A 400 metre accessible walk, with a softer surface, is possible upstream. The route is level with a stone-dust surface. At several points along the trail are audio information boxes –just turn the handle and listen to the story of the local industrial heritage and wildlife!

How to get there: Pontneddfechan is located at the northern end of the Vale of Neath. At Glyn-neath follow the signs on the B4242 for Pontneddfechan. Once in the village, the road forks next to the Craig-y-Dinas pub - take the road directly in front of you and not the road heading up the hill. The starting point for the walk is about half a mile from the pub.

Nearest town/Village: Pontneddfechan, Glyn-neath

OS Grid Reference: Explorer Map OL 12 or Landranger Map 160 – SN 911 080

Distance: Up to 3km there and back.

Contact Waterfalls Centre, Pontneddfechan on 01639 721795 and National Park Visitor Centre on 01874 623366.

Facilities: Pontneddfechan has several pubs, a post office/shop and the Waterfalls Centre. The Community Hall & Café is open at most weekends through the year. Local information boards display the café opening times.

 Parking: Parking is available in the grounds of the Pontneddfechan Community Hall or at the nearby Dinas Rock car park.

 Toilets: There are public toilets near the Waterfalls Centre, Pontneddfechan although the closest disabled access toilets are at Cwm Porth car park near Ystradfellte (Grid Ref SN 928 125) or at Aberdare. There is a disabled access toilet located in the community hall (part-time opening hours).