Bridgend Bridge

19th. Century


19th Century

Iron founding and coal mining developed in earnest at the beginning of the century, but Bridgend stood outside the southern limit of the coalfield and retained its essential agricultural market character, as well as being the shopping and business centre for the coal mining valleys. In 1830 the Bridgend Railway was opened: a horse-drawn tramway which branched from the Dyffryn Llynfi and Porthcawl Railway of 1828 and survived for 30 years bringing coal from the upper end of the Llynfi Valley.

Brunel’s South Wales Railway opened its Bridgend station in 1850. The Vale of Glamorgan line of the Barry Railway was built in 1897.


New roads to Cowbridge and Aberkenfig together with a new traffic bridge in the 1820’s and 1830’s opened the town to more through traffic and much more trade ensued.


The area has also been an important centre of limestone quarrying and in particular for a famous building stone in a part of Bridgend known as Quarella. The last large building to be mainly constructed of this particular stone was St. Mary’s Church, Nolton, completed in 1887, with its tall spire added in 1898.