About the Society
Historical Notes






Wesleyan Methodists



As early as 1801 the Rev Mr. Cole of the Brecon Circuit appealed to the Wesleyan Conference to send Welsh speaking ministers into the growing industrial areas. It is possible that some ministers stopped at Hirwaun en route for Merthyr and established a small community there.


Wesleyan Methodists at Hirwaun leased a piece of land on which to build their own place of worship, “for the purpose of the Wesleyans erecting a meeting place in the course of the year ensuing”. Lease dated 1 October 1823 NLW Bute Mss Box33 Parcel 5.

This Chapel was called Soar and was rebuilt in 1835 and again in 1886. One of the leading members was a Carmarthenshire man called David Davis. He had settled first at Merthyr as an apprentice at the London Warehouse and later at Hirwaun with his own warehouse. He later moved to Aberdare. (David Davis, Blaengwawr.)

There were also some Wesleyan Societies at Aberdare including an English Society, which met at Moss House during the period 1823–26.


The Welsh Wesleyans of the district purchased Pentwyn Bach for £260, its former owners the Calvinistic Methodists having built Carmel Trecynon in that year. The Wesleyan Methodists remained at Pentwyn Bach at least until they built in the village of Aberdare “a large handsome chapel with a ministers house and six cottages” — Zion
David Young, ‘History of Methodists in Wales’.

In the meantime, the English Wesleyans, meeting at Moss House, had decided to build a chapel for themselves. It was built in 1841 on a site now occupied by Messrs Hodges and Sons. It had a seating capacity of 250 and an initial cost of £200. Shortly after 1850, it had a membership of 22 and 22 scholars in the Sunday School. The foundation stone giving the detail 1841 was for a long time in the passage off Hodges’ house at 23 Commercial Place. It was later kept at the back of Gadlys Cottage and when the latter was demolished to make room for the Western Welsh Garage, it was cemented into the floor outside the garage but the inscription is no longer decipherable.


Methodists moved to the new building in Green Street.