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Open Doors - The Hetty Colliery Engine House


The winding engine house, headgear and fanhouse are the only surviving buildings of the Great Western Colliery, which supplied coal to the Great Western Railway, and once employed over 2,000 men. The engine house contains the original steam winding engine, built by Barker and Cope of Kidsgrove, Staffordshire, in 1875, which has been restored to working order by volunteers. The fanhouse, which will be open to the public for the first time this year, contains the ventilation machinery which drew dangerous gas out of the workings. The headgear, built in 1896, is the oldest of its kind in the UK.

This is the only big steam engine in Wales in working order. Visitors will be able to see it working, on compressed air, and to talk to the volunteers who have restored it. They will also have the opportunity to drive the engine under supervision, and to operate the signalling systems. Models will illustrate earlier methods of winding before the steam engine was invented. Guided tours of the fanhouse will show the 12' diameter ventilating fan, and the instruments used to monitor barometric pressure and speed of the air circulating underground. Post code - CF37 2PG.The Hetty pit site stands alongside the main Rhondda road (the A4058) between Hopkinstown and Trehafod, west of Pontypridd.

Public transport - Rhondda buses from Pontypridd; nearest railway station is Trehafod.

Limited parking on site, but plenty of parking at Barry Sidings Country Park opposite. Steep steps and uneven ground surfaces. Suitable footwear recommended, especially if taking the tour of the fanhouse.


  • Free