Victorian Powys for primary  schools
Powys Digital History Project
The Elan Valley dams
  Lost beneath the new lakes  

There was an old corn-mill near the church, and the local school was just along the road. Postcard of Nantgwyllt valleyThe shop used by the little community, seen here in another postcard view, was by the road close to the River Elan. Now the Caban-coch dam closes off the narrow end of the valley in the background of the picture, and the site of the road and buildings now lies deep underwater.

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The Bethania Baptist chapel, pictured on the postcard shown here, was just below the Garreg-ddu dam and very close to Postcard of Baptist chapelthe banks of the River Elan.
When the dams were built by the Victorians, they also had to replace many of the buildings which were going to be lost when the valleys were flooded. A new church was built close to the Garreg-ddu dam, and a new school and a Baptist chapel were provided near the Caban-coch dam.
  Postcard of  Elan ValleyThis old postcard was sold as a reminder of the Elan Valley 'before the Waterworks Scheme'.
The road ran close to the river along the floor of the valley.
You can see from this picture that the area was ideal for making huge lakes by closing off the narrow ends of the valleys with stone-built dams.
You can also see that there weren't many people living there, but there are fascinating old photographs of some of the people of the flooded valley of Nantgwyllt on the next page...

The people of the lost valleys...


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