Victorian Bridgend: A Timeline



1837: The new Bridgend Market Hall (Caroline Street - then Eastgate Street) opened on Lady Day.

1837: A Workhouse of the Bridgend and Cowbridge Union was completed near Quarella, replacing the former Poor House off Nolton Street.

1837: Union Street (now Market Street) came into being.

1839: Public meeting held at the old Town Hall to consider erection of a new gas works as the present works were in disrepair. No company was formed at that time.

1841: Bridgend became the headquarters of the Newcastle and Ogmore Police District.
1841: Dr.Verity reconstructed the gas works.

1842: A Wesleyan Sunday School established in "The Rhiw" with 30 scholars.
1842: London House was sold to Edward Loveluck.

1843: The Old Town Hall was demolished. The Leicester House Pub and some cottages were also demolished, making way for the New Town Hall. - The Foundation Stone was laid on the 18th of September, 1843.

1843: Bridge Cottage was used as a temporary Court House whilst the New Town Hall was being completed.


1845: During this year the New Town Hall was completed on land donated by the Earl of Dunraven. The hall was handed over to the committee of trustees on the May the first of that year. The first committee was held at the hall on the 2nd of June 1845. The Earl of Dunraven instructed that the land was to be leased to the town for 999 years and any building that was erected there was not to be used for political use.

1846: A new cattle market opened on the Election Field off the West Side of Adare Street.

1847: The Police Station situated at the Town Hall was lit by gas for the first time.

1847: A serious epidemic of Typhus occurred at The Bridgend Workhouse. It was reported that Dr. Abraham Verity and the Matron were amongst those taken ill.

1848: Alterations begun at the Town Hall to provide for Magistrates Courts and the new County Court.

1848: A Lancasterian School opened in Bridgend. (site unknown)
1849: The North aisle was added to St. Illtyd's Church, Newcastle Hill. The church was reopened by the Bishop of Llandaff on the 23rd of December, 1850.


1850: The first Hope Chapel was erected in Queen Street. (now The Zone)
1850: The South Wales Railway was opened through Bridgend.
1850: The Bridgend Railway Station was reported on the 3rd of August to have been fitted with gas lamps.

1852: Heavy Floods were reported in and around Bridgend in November, causing considerable damage to property.

1854: It was reported that Iolo Farddglas (Bard) had died at the Bridgend Workhouse, aged 80.
1857: The Bridgend Volunteer Force was re-established.

1858: The New County Lunatic Asylum was completed.
1859: The roof at the Wesleyan Methodist Chapel,  Newcastle Hill Had collapsed.
1859: A new gallery was installed in the Town Hall.

1860: A drinking foundation and memorial was erected by Caroline, Countess of Dunraven at the foot of Station Street (Court Road) .

The Randall Memorial:

During 1826 the management of the Dunraven Estate was taken on by John Randall from Salibury, Wiltshire. Due to his professional and far-sighted supervision the Estate was to prosper for the benefit of  both the landlord and tenants.

Upon his death in 1859, Caroline, Countess of Dunraven (Bridgend seat: Dunraven Castle) who was a friend and admirer of Randall's loyal work in Bridgend, commissioned the design and silting of the drinking fountain in his memory. The fountain was one of two that Caroline has erected in the town, this one being known locally as 'The Randall Memorial'.

John Randall was succeeded by his son Henry who continued his fathers work. The Dunraven Estate was in the capable hands of the Randall's for over 100 years.


1860: A Telegraph Service was installed at Bridgend Railway Station in April for public use. This was the first system of its kind in Bridgend.

1862: Hermon Chapel, Nolton Street opens.

1866: The Central Glamorgan Gazette commenced publication in Bridgend.

1867: Several thatched cottages at The Square, Newcastle Hill were destroyed by a fire.

1869: The Bridgend Gas and Water act is passed

1877: Serve floods on the 12th of August caused great damage in Bridgend. A wooden bridge was washed away and the water was said to be six feet deep in the Wyndham Arms Hotel.

1877: The First Boar School (Penybont) was opened on Quarella Road.
1877: Bridgend Rugby Football Club first formed.

1880: The first issue of the Bridgend Chronicle was published.
1883: The New English Congregational Church was erected in Wyndham Street.
1884: The Cottage Homes, Merthyr Mawr Road opened.

1885: A schoolroom for the Sunday School of Hope Baptist Chapel in Queen Street was opened almost opposite.

1887: The last remaining toll gates and bars in Bridgend District were taken down by the Glamorgan Highways Board.

1887: A new Mental Asylum was built at Parc Gwyllt.

1890: The foundation stone of the new Ruhamah Welsh Baptist Chapelin Wyndham Street was laid by the Countess of Dunraven.

1892: The Davies' buildings on the corner of Caroline Street was built by George E. Davies.

1893: St. Illtyd's Church was enlarged.

1893: A Conservative Club opened in Wyndham Street.

1896: The Cottage Hospital, opened at the foot of Court Road. It was Bridgend's first real hospital.

1897: A stage and dressing rooms were installed in the Town Hall.

1898: A spire was added to Nolton Church.

1899: Coed Parc was built by Samuel Llewellyn.

1900: An extension was made to the Workhouse to provide an Infirmary for sick and poor patients.

1901: A Public Library was constituted in the former Reading Room of the Mechanics' Institute on the ground floor of the Town Hall.



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