Why "The Old School House"?

Aberdulais tea-room historic image

The Old School House Tea-Room has had a varied past, ranging from the Victorian era up to the present day.

A brief history...

During the thriving tinplate era, Aberdulais employed many men, women and children, with the youngest child being 8 years old. In the late 1830s the proprietors built the school room to enable the children to have some form of education after they had completed their 12 hour working day. The children were taught reading (mainly the Bible), arithmetic and various crafts.

School children at Aberdulais
Aberdulais school children
School children at Aberdulais

The tin workers often used the building as a reading room, using the Bible in their endeavours to improve their moral outlook.

The building was often used as a meeting place for local Baptists and also for social events, including magic lantern slide shows and national elections.

The tinplate industry moved to the lower works, and over time the building and its grounds became the property of Dr Prell. He used the school room as his surgery and was followed in succession by Dr Thomas. The building was occupied as a surgery until 1968.

Aberdulais - Old Image of village

The building was then owned by the National Old Age Pensioners Association before being sold to the National Trust in 1982.

In 1989 the building was refurbished by the ‘Friends of Aberdulais Falls’ and nowadays, along with the help of the volunteers, the building has been taken back to its roots, and become The Old School House Tea-Room, serving local produce to all the visitors of Aberdulais.