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Trip Planner Europe  /  UK  /  Wales  /  South Wales  /  Rhondda Cynon Taf  /  Tonyrefail
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Tonyrefail is a village and community in Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough, Wales. It is situated 4mi north west of Llantrisant at the head of the Ely Valley, south of the Rhondda, being around 1.5mi from Trebanog and around 2mi from Williamstown. It is also around 2.5mi from the village of Gilfach Goch. Historically Tonyrefail was the site of a rural hamlet, it evolved into an industrial village during the second half of the 19th century, when coal and steel became synonymous with the South Wales Valleys. It now has a population of 11,035.HistoryEarly records show Tonyrefail to be a dairy farming and livestock raising area, and many early farmhouses still exist in some form today. This was in stark contrast to the nearby valleys, that were forced to adopt arable and sheep farming activities due to their hilly geography. Early industrialisation began in the late 18th century around a corn mill and woollen factory, but it wasn't until deep coal mining began that employment grew on a large scale. At its peak Coedely Colliery employed nearly 1,800 men which not only changed the face of Tonyrefail, but also created the establishment of nearby colliery settlements such as Coedely, Thomastown and Bryngolau. It was once a busy town serving the communities of Coedely, Trebanog, Gilfach Goch and Tonyrefail itself. These days though it is a quiet residential town.
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