Cyfarthfa Castle Museum and Art Gallery

Cyfarthfa Castle Museum and Art Gallery
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The 'Ironmaster' William Crawshay commissioned Cyfarthfa Castle in 1824. This grand castellated mansion overlooked his immensely successful ironworks and has been called, "the most impressive monument of the Industrial Iron Age in South Wales".

At the Museum, you can admire the extensive fine and decorative art collections, including Swansea, Nantgarw and Wedgwood porcelain. Stroll through the atmospheric social and industrial history galleries, which chart the rise of this once great ironmaking town; learn about Richard Trevithick's Penydarren Locomotive of 1804, the first locomotive to pull a load along rails; discover the roots of the Labour movement, from the Merthyr Rising of 1831, and the martyrdom of Dic Penderyn, to the first Labour MP - Keir Hardie; see our 'museum of a museum' including curiosities from around the world - ancient Egyptian grave goods, Greek and Roman artefacts, and Far Eastern decorative arts.

Enjoy the elegant surroundings of this interesting museum and once family home, set in beautiful parkland, on the edge of the Brecon Beacons National Park.

Venue Type:

Museum, Heritage site, Gallery, Garden, parklands or rural site, Historic house or home, Industrial heritage site, Castle or defences

Opening hours

April-September, Mon - Fri 1000-1730, Sat-Sun 12.00-17.30
October-March, Tues-Fri 1000-1600, Sat-Sun 1200-1600

Admission charges

Adults - £2.20
Over 60s and Students - £1.10
Children (under 16) - Free

Discounts

  • National Art Pass
  • Museums Association
Getting there

Use Postcode CF47 8PA for satnavs.

Just off the A470

Collection details

Archives, Natural Sciences, Costume and Textiles, Decorative and Applied Art, World Cultures, Fine Art, Music, Coins and Medals, Personalities, Science and Technology, Social History

Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
Open Art Exhibition

Cyfarthfa Castle Open Art Exhibition 2020

  • 17 March — 14 June 2020 *on now

17th March – 14th June – Cyfarthfa Castle Open Art Exhibition 2020
The annual Open Art Exhibition at Cyfarthfa Castle! Come and see a huge range of artists, both amateur and professional. If you would like to be a part of it and submit a piece of art then please use the contact details below and email or call for more information.

Facebook: @cyfarthfa website: www.Cyfarthfa.com
Phone: 01685 727371 E-mail: museum@merthyrleisuretrust.co.uk

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

Standard museum entry fees apply.

Events details are listed below. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all. For events that don't have a specific date see the 'Resources' tab above.
Lizzy Jones by Hilary Barry

Pit Girls by Hilary Barry

  • 3 March — 31 May 2020 *on now

The centre-piece of the exhibition consists of the 12 head and shoulder “Pit Girls” portraits by Hilary Barry, based on the photographs taken by William Clayton. Around these, Cyfarthfa Castle Museum has drawn on its own collection of artefacts to add to and expand on the story of the women and the conditions in which they lived and worked.



Exhibition background


Hilary’s interest in the Pit Girls originated with a piece on BBC Radio 4, in which the commentator suggested that women being recruited into the workforce during WW1 were the first recorded instances of female industrial labour. Hilary was sure she recalled stories from her Welsh background of women working down the mines long before that date.



Looking into it further she remembered Jeremy Deller and Roger Malbert’s book “All that Is Solid Melts into Air”, which included photographs taken by William Clayton in the 19th Century of women mine workers from Tredegar. One striking element common to all the images was that every woman, regardless of the condition of their other working clothing, wore a hat, decorated with whatever accessories she was able to obtain.



Further research revealed that Manchester Art Gallery owned the photographs, so she contacted them for further details. Acting on their advice, she learned about Arthur Mumby – a London solicitor who had commissioned the photographs – and in early 2019 visited Tredegar Museum to try to find more information on the women in the pictures. She was saddened but not surprised to learn that none exists, other than in the court records of the day as the women, paid less than the children who worked alongside them, were often forced to steal coal from the surrounding slagheaps and subsequently arrested.



Working in appalling conditions the “Pit Girls”, as they were called, continued in the mines until 1842, when a Parliamentary Act put an end to women and children working underground. Canny mine owners, not wishing to lose a valuable source of cheap labour, promptly moved them to equally arduous work above ground, where they were subsequently known as the “Tip Girls”.



In Hilary’s own words: “Next to no information exists about these women. In particular – and unlike their male counterparts, for whom at least one mine-owner commissioned a series of paintings, each identified by the name and trade of the sitter – none of their names are recorded. I wanted to give a voice to the portraits of these silent and forgotten women.” This formed the basis for a series of 12 portraits.



Hilary has exhibited widely and taken part in many Selected Group Shows throughout the UK, and had several Solo Exhibitions in London.



W: www.hilarybarryartist.com

F: www.facebook.com/hilarybarryartist

I: www.instagram.com/hilarybarryartist

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

Standard museum entry fees

Easter Toy Theatre

Easter Toy Theatre

  • 8 — 9 April 2020 11am-1pm, 2-4pm

Making a toy theatre was popular during the Victorian era. Come along and create your own Easter themed theatre to take away with you. Drop-in workshop, details below.

Drop-in workshop so no need to book, waiting times can vary.

For information on entrance fees and opening times or to book, contact us or visit our webpages
Facebook: @cyfarthfa website: www.Cyfarthfa.com
Phone: 01685 727371 E-mail: museum@merthyrleisuretrust.co.uk

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

Standard entrance fees into the museum.

Red Ted Art teacups

Make your own paper teacup & saucer!

  • 16 — 17 April 2020 11am-1pm, 2-4pm

Cyfarthfa Castle has an amazing collection of ceramics, from teapots to plates and everything in between. Come along and create your own teacup and saucer out of paper, inspired by our collection.

Drop-in workshop so no need to book, waiting times can vary.

For information on entrance fees and opening times or to book, contact us or visit our webpages

Facebook: @cyfarthfa website: www.Cyfarthfa.com

Phone: 01685 727371 E-mail: museum@merthyrleisuretrust.co.uk

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

Standard museum entrance fees apply

Life Drawing

Life Drawing

  • 23 April 2020 6-8pm

Drawing from the figure at Cyfarthfa Bothy.
Advanced booking advised as places are limited.
The session will take place at The Bothy (close to the greenhouses, behind Cyfarthfa Castle), Cyfarthfa Park CF47 8RE.
(Free parking, with easy access)
Cost: £9 per person

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

Advanced booking advised as places are limited.
(Free parking, with easy access)
Cost: £9 per person

Rianne Rowlands cartoon

Create a Caricature: With Beano artist Rianne Rowlands

  • 2 May 2020 2-4pm

Caricature art is one of the most popular and underrated art forms. Come and let Beano artist Rianne Rowlands take you through the basics of creating your own caricature.

All materials provided.
Booking essential.

To book, contact: 01685 727371 or museum@wellbeingmerthyr.co.uk

Admission

£15.00 per person (non-refundable).

Blodeuwedd by Gus Payne

Mono Printing the Mabinogion

  • 27 — 28 May 2020 11am-1pm, 2-4pm

Come along and look at images from the old Welsh folk tales written in the Mabinogion and make a mono-print inspired by them to take home.

Drop in workshop so no need to book, waiting times can vary.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

Standard museum entrance fees apply .

Evacuees

Merthyr Tydfil a Safe Place: The story of evacuees in Merthyr Tydfil

  • 20 June 2020 2-3:30pm

In June 1940 Merthyr Tydfil welcome over 1700 evacuated children, with more to follow. A seated talk is about this huge influx of people into Merthyr Tydfil and their experiences.

For information on entrance fees and opening times or to book, contact us or visit: Facebook: @cyfarthfa
Website: www.Cyfarthfa.com
Phone: 01685 727371
E-mail: museum@wellbeingmerthy.co.uk

Admission

Standard museum entry fees apply.
Booking essential.

Cilsanws dagger

British Archaeology Week - Archaeology in 3D

  • 18 July 2020 2-3:30pm

A seated talk which will take various objects out cases their and storage and tell the story behind them.

The Cilsanws Dagger, glass from the Roman fort at Penydarren and iron from the Cyfarthfa works are just a few of the archaeological finds house at Cyfarthfa Castle.

For information on entrance fees and opening times or to book, contact us or visit: Facebook: @cyfarthfa
Website: www.Cyfarthfa.com
Phone: 01685 727371
E-mail: museum@merthyrleisuretrust.co.uk

Admission

Standard museum entry fees apply.
Booking essential.

Colour-in gas mask

Evacuated: Create your own comic!

  • 29 — 30 July 2020 11am-4pm

In June 1940 thousands of children were evacuated to Merthyr Tydfil. Come along to this workshop and discover more by creating your own comic strip inspired by an evacuee’s stories. Drop-in workshop, details below.

Drop-in workshop so no need to book, waiting times can vary. Runs from 11:00am-1:00pm & 2:00pm-4:00pm. (Child friendly event)

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

These workshops are free, but standard museum entrance fees apply for over 16s.

William Crawshay II (1788–1867) by an unknown artist

Costumed Guided Tours: A special guided tour with Mr Crawshay

  • 9 August 2020 2-3pm
  • 23 August 2020 2-3pm

Guided tour with William Crawshay - Special Costumed tour

On August 9 & 23 take part in a unique guided tour of the museum & art gallery with William Crawshay.

Admission

The tour is free but standard museum entrance fees apply.

Paper doll

Paper Dolls & Pirates!

  • 12 August 2020 11am-1pm, 2-4pm
  • 13 August 2020 11am-1pm, 2-4pm

80 years ago, when evacuated children came to Merthyr Tydfil many of them played with paper toys. Come along and find out more and make a doll or pirate to take away with you.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

These workshops are free, but standard entrance fees apply for over 16s.

Arthur Giardelli: Pembrokeshire Panel

Assemblage Art: An introduction to creating unique artwork

  • 22 August 2020 10:30am-3:30pm

The renowned artist Arthur Giardelli came to Merthyr Tydfil 80 years ago this year. His technique of searching outdoors, finding and reusing natural objects for artwork is the inspiration for this workshop. Find out all about his history and about assemblage art, while creating your own unique artwork. Booking essential. Workshop costs £15.00 per person (non-refundable). All materials provided. Starts at 10:30am/finishes 3:30pm. (Adult Event – over 16’s)

For information on entrance fees and opening times or to book, contact us or visit our Facebook: @cyfarthfa website: www.Cyfarthfa.com Phone: 01685 727371 E-mail: museum@merthyrleisuretrust.co.uk

(Image: Arthur Giardelli "Pembrokeshire Panel" detail)

Suitable for

  • 18+
  • 16-17

Admission

Booking essential.
Workshop costs £15.00 per person (non-refundable).
All materials provided.

Flip book

Create a fabulous flip book!

  • 26 August 2020 11am-1pm, 2-4pm
  • 27 August 2020 11am-1pm, 2-4pm

Toys were hard to come by during WWII so children made their own.
Come and create your own flip book inspired by the 1940s. Drop-in workshop, details below.

*Drop-in workshops run from 11:00am-1:00pm & 2:00pm-4:00pm.
There is no need to book, waiting times can vary. Suitable for children of all ages.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

Standard entrance fees apply

Inside the Drill Hall art exhibition

The Great 1880 Exhibition at Merthyr Tydfil

  • 5 September 2020 2-3pm

In 1880, the largest exhibition of art and historical objects was opened at the Drill Hall in Merthyr Tydfil. This seated talk will tell the story of the exhibition and how it led to the founding of Cyfarthfa Castle Museum and original objects from the exhibition will be brought out of storage and shown.
Booking essential.

Suitable for

  • 18+
  • 16-17

Admission

Standard museum entry fees apply.

Cyfarthfa Castle at night

Ghost Tours of Cyfarthfa Castle Museum & Art Gallery

  • 22 October 2020 7-8:30pm, 9-10:30pm
  • 23 October 2020 7-8:30pm, 9-10:30pm

This is a guided tour around Cyfarthfa Castle Museum and Art Gallery by torchlight. Ghost stories will be told about all the mysterious things to happen at the Castle over the decades and you will have a chance to do your own paranormal investigations.

PLEASE NOTE: The tours will only take place within the Museum section of the building.

Tour starts at 7:00pm – 8:30pm & 9:00pm – 10:30pm on both dates.

Suitable for

  • 18+
  • 16-17

Admission

£10.00 per person (non-refundable).

Children's Halloween picture

Halloween Hunt

  • 27 — 31 October 2020

Take part in our Halloween hunt through the museum and earn a prize!
For a hunt answer sheet please go to reception on arrival.
Runs when building is open; please check opening times.

Standard entrance fees apply for over 16s for all workshops.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly
  • Especially for children

Admission

Standard entry fees only (under 16s: free)

Children's Halloween picture

Halloween Pop-up Scene

  • 30 — 31 October 2020

Come along and create a glow in the dark, pop-up Halloween scene.

Drop-in workshop so no need to book, waiting times can vary.

Runs from 11:00am-1:00pm & 2:00pm-3:30pm.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

Standard museum entry fees apply.

Felt bird

Festive Bears, Hares & More

  • 14 November 2020 1-4pm

To help get you into the festive mood early come along to this felt craft workshop and created your own festive animal.

Starts at 1:00pm. (Adult Event – over 16s)

Suitable for

  • 18+
  • 16-17

Admission

£15.00 per person (non-refundable).
Booking essential.
All materials provided.

Victorian wreath making workshop at Cyfarthfa Castle

Victorian Christmas Wreath Making

  • 5 — 6 December 2020

Make a classic Victorian Christmas Wreath with fresh evergreens.

Starts at 1:30pm

Suitable for

  • 18+
  • 16-17

Admission

£15.00 per person (non-refundable).
All materials provided.

Getting there

Use Postcode CF47 8PA for satnavs.

Just off the A470

Cyfarthfa Castle Museum and Art Gallery
Cyfarthfa Park
Brecon Road
Merthyr Tydfil
CF47 8RE
Wales

Website

http://www.cyfarthfa.com

E-mail

museum@merthyrleisuretrust.co.uk

www.museum@merthyrleisuretrust.co.uk

Telephone

01685 727371

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.
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