Merthyr Castle Museum
Attraction in South Wales Valleys
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”. The museum houses the first steam whistle, the first voting ballot box and dresses by Laura Ashley and Julien McDonald. The surroundings, Cyfarthfa Castle, home to William Crawshay II and family, serve as a reminder to the Ironmasters dominance over the town and the wealth the iron industry brought to the area. At the Castle you can admire the extensive fine and decorative art collections. This includes Swansea, Nantgarw and Wedgwood porcelain and art by Penry Williams, the Welsh Turner, and George Frederick Harris. 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.