Blaenavon Ironworks is the best preserved blast furnace complex of its period and type in the world. It is a key attraction within the Blaenavon World Heritage Site and is well worth a visit.
This mighty iron foundry once formed the cutting edge of technology and was one of the biggest ironworks in the world. It operated from 1789 to 1902. It was steam powered, with three blast furnaces.
The ironworks were at the heart of the industrial landscape of South Wales – without them, none of the quarries, mines, spoilheaps, tramroads, railways, canals, workers houses or civic buildings would have come to exist. The works developed and grew over time and a visitor to the site today can see the remains of six blast furnaces, the casting house and the water balance tower, a hydraulic lift.
The refurbished workers’ cottages and the reconstructed company shop also provide a vivid window onto what conditions were like for the people who worked here. The site is brought to life through careful interpretation, audio posts and exhibitions.
Visiting Blaenavon Ironworks
The site is managed by Cadw and admission is free.
How to get there
Blaenavon is south east of Brynmawr and north of Pontypool. The museum is signposted in Blaenavon. Bus route 30 from Cwmbran.
Nearest town or village
Mar–Oct daily 10am–5pm; Nov–Mar Mon–Thu closed, Fri–Sat 9.30am–4pm, Sun 11am–4pm
Blaenavon Ironworks, Blaenavon NP4 9RN, tel 01495 792615, www.cadw.wales.gov.uk
On site, including a toilet with disabled access.