Community and conservation at Coelbren

This section of the page features an image gallery, so if you're using a screen reader you may wish to jump to the main content.

On the edge of the South Wales coalfield, west of the Brecon Beacons, lies Coelbren – a small village with a big sense of community.

We acquired 61.42ha of land in and around the village over a 39-year period between 1947 and 1986, with much of the land given to us by J. B. Garsed Price, a local landowner, sheriff of the county and solicitor.

The land includes Henrhyd Falls – southern Britain’s highest waterfall – and Graigllech woods.

Getting involved

Our involvement with Coelbren’s close-knit community really started to take off in 2010 when we held a community consultation to hear what residents would like to see happen with our land surrounding the village. This led to the creation of a liaison group made up of our staff and local residents.

The community work has led to increased access and walking routes around the village. The re-opening of the old tram road was made possible by the hard work of a group of Coelbren volunteers. This route is now used regularly and has been a great success as part of the Fforest Fawr Geopark 'Lines in the Landscape' walk.

This walk led to the publication of a leaflet focusing on the industrial and historical features of Coelbren. It was created by the Geopark with a huge amount of help from the community.

Working together

We hold work parties at Coelbren throughout the year, usually focusing on improving access and seasonal projects such as hedgelaying.

We also run a wildlife and bushcraft club every Friday through the summer holidays for the village’s younger residents, helping them to enjoy the great outdoors.

When the local church fence needed replacing in 2011, we rallied support and saw more than 50 local residents give up their time to lend a hand. It just goes to show what a wonderful, supportive community Coelbren is.