Neath, Glamorgan, Wales, United Kingdom

Roman fort | Medieval period | Industrial and modern Neath | Sport | Transport | Plans

🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 Neath is a market town and community situated in the Neath Port Talbot County Borough, Wales. The town had a population of 50,658 in 2011. The community of the parish of Neath had a population of 19,258 in 2011. Historically in Glamorgan, the town is located on the River Neath, seven miles (eleven kilometres) east-northeast of Swansea.


Roman fort The town is located at a ford of the River Neath and its strategic situation is evident by a number of Celtic hill forts, surrounding the town. The Romans also recognised the area's strategic importance and built an Auxiliary Fort on the river's Western bank around 74 AD.

Much of the site is on the grounds of Dwr-y-Felin Comprehensive School but archaeological digs have also found gate-towers that extended out beyond the fort's walls (a feature unique in Roman Britain) and a large Roman marching camp that would have accommodated thousands of troops. These finds indicate some of the unusual measures the Romans took during the resistance of the native Silures. The fort at Neath was abandoned around 125 AD for fifteen years and again around 170 AD for a century before the final Roman withdrawal around 320 AD.

The Antonine Itinerary (c. 2nd century) names Nido (or Nidum) as one of nine places in Roman Wales.


Medieval period St Illtyd visited the Neath area and established a settlement in what is now known as Llantwit on the northern edge of the town. The church of St Illtyd was built at this settlement and was enlarged in Norman times. The Norman and pre-Norman church structure remains intact and active to day within the Church in Wales. The Welsh language name for Neath is Castell-nedd, referring to the Norman Neath Castle, the English kings Henry II, John, and Edward I visited.


Industrial and modern Neath Neath was a market town that expanded with the arrival of the Industrial Revolution in the 18th century with new manufacturing industries of iron, steel and tinplate. The Mackworth family, who owned the Gnoll Estate were prominent in the town's industrial development. Coal was mined extensively in the surrounding valleys and the construction of canals and railways made Neath a major transportation centre and the Evans & Bevan families were major players in the local coal mining community as well as owning the Vale of Neath Brewery. Silica was mined in the Craig-y-Dinas area of Pontneddfechan, after Quaker entrepreneur William Weston Young invented the blast furnace silica firebrick, later moving brick production from the works at Pontwalby to the Green in Neath. The town continued as a market trading centre with a municipal cattle market run by W.B.Trick. Industrial development continued throughout the 20th century with the construction by BP of a new petroleum refinery at Llandarcy.

Admiral Lord Nelson stayed at the Castle Hotel en route to Milford Haven when the fleet was at anchor there. Lt. Lewis Roatley, the son of the landlord of the Castle Hotel, served as a Royal Marines officer with Nelson aboard HMS Victory in the Battle of Trafalgar.

The River Neath is a navigable estuary and Neath was a river port until recent times. The heavy industries are no more; the town is now a commercial and tourism centre. Attractions for visitors are the ruins of the Cistercian Neath Abbey, the Gnoll Park, and Neath Indoor Market.

Neath hosted the National Eisteddfod of Wales in 1918, 1934 and 1994.


Sport The Welsh Rugby Union was formed at a meeting held at the Castle Hotel in 1881. Neath Rugby Football Club, the famous and successful "Welsh All Blacks", play at The Gnoll.

Motorcycle speedway was staged at the Abbey Stadium in Neath in 1962. The Welsh Dragons, led by New Zealander Trevor Redmond, raced with some success in the Provincial League but, because of local problems, a number of the "home" fixtures were raced at St Austell. The Dragons introduced the Australian rider Charlie Monk to British speedway. After a season at Long Eaton Archers, Monk went on to have considerable success at Glasgow. The team also featured South African Howdy Cornell. In the early 1960s there was also stock car racing held at Neath Abbey, opposite the monastery.

Neath Athletic A.F.C. was the town's largest football team, playing at Neath RFC's ground, The Gnoll, and played in the top flight of Welsh football, the Welsh Premier League, until the club was wound up in 2012. In the 2006–07 season, Neath Athletic A.F.C. were promoted from the Welsh Football League First Division to the Welsh Premier League. Neath Athletic A.F.C. had an average of 300 supporters attending a domestic, Welsh Premier League game, which was typical of the Welsh Premier League.


Transport Neath railway station is on the South Wales Main Line. Great Western Railway and Transport for Wales serve the station with services westbound to Swansea, Carmarthen and the West Wales Line and eastbound to Port Talbot Parkway, Bridgend, Cardiff Central and London Paddington. Trains also run via Hereford and Shrewsbury to Crewe and Manchester Piccadilly.

Neath bus station is at Victoria Gardens, a five-minute walk from the railway station. National Express services call at the railway station. From Victoria Gardens, First Cymru provides direct inter-urban services to nearby Swansea and Port Talbot in addition to South Wales Transport who provide many similar local services.

The A465 skirts the town to the north east and provides a link to the M4.


Plans In 2008 plans were announced to regenerate around 1,000 acres (400 hectares) of land in and around Neath town centre. The site once occupied by the previous civic centre was to be redeveloped as a new shopping centre. The area around the Milland Road Industrial Estate and with the area around the Neath Canal were also to be redeveloped. The proposals included an "iconic" golden rugby ball-shaped museum, a library, heritage centre and other new facilities.

In March 2008, the county's new radio station, Afan FM, announced plans to install a new transmitter for the Neath area. This would give residents of Neath access to the radio station, which already transmitted to the neighbouring area of Port Talbot. The new transmitter for the Neath area was commissioned by Government regulator Ofcom on Thursday 23 October 2008.


Neath has a population of over 51,000 people. Neath also forms one of the centres of the wider Neath Port Talbot District which has a population of over 462,000 people.

To set up a UBI Lab for Neath see: Twitter:

Twin Towns - Sister Cities Neath has links with:

🇩🇪 Esslingen am Neckar, Germany 🇵🇱 Piotrków Trybunalski, Poland 🇮🇹 Udine, Italy 🇫🇷 Vienne, France
Text Atribution: Wikipedia Text under CC-BY-SA license

Antipodal to Neath is: 176.2,-51.663

Locations Near: Neath -3.79982,51.6627

🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 Port Talbot -3.827,51.61 d: 6.1  

🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 Swansea -3.941,51.623 d: 10.7  

🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 Ammanford -3.993,51.8 d: 20.3  

🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 Bridgend -3.578,51.507 d: 23.1  

🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 Tonypandy -3.451,51.622 d: 24.5  

🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 Aberdare -3.445,51.714 d: 25.1  

🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 Llanelli -4.193,51.787 d: 30.4  

🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 Merthyr Tydfil -3.375,51.761 d: 31.2  

🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 Pontypridd -3.342,51.602 d: 32.3  

🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 Carmarthen -4.316,51.856 d: 41.5  

Antipodal to: Neath 176.2,-51.663

🇳🇿 Dunedin 170.474,-45.884 d: 19248.1  

🇳🇿 Balclutha 169.75,-46.233 d: 19250  

🇳🇿 Christchurch 172.617,-43.517 d: 19070.6  

🇳🇿 Canterbury 171.58,-43.543 d: 19048.6  

🇳🇿 Invercargill 168.373,-46.413 d: 19199.7  

🇳🇿 Queenstown 168.658,-45.033 d: 19091.9  

🇳🇿 Wellington 174.767,-41.283 d: 18855.8  

🇳🇿 Hutt 174.917,-41.217 d: 18849.4  

🇳🇿 Lower Hutt 174.917,-41.217 d: 18849.4  

🇳🇿 Upper Hutt 175.05,-41.133 d: 18841  

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