The Story of the Miners' Hospital

Our 2021 Heritage Project

The Caerphilly Miners Heritage Project is made possible with The National Lottery Heritage Fund. Thanks to National Lottery players, we have been able to look into the heritage of Caerphilly Miners Centre, speaking to and hearing from people whose lives have been part of the Miners’ history – primarily from years it was a hospital serving the local community until the 1980s.

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Changing Lives - Concept

Caerphilly Miners Centre for the Community was established to preserve the social heritage embedded in the Miners building and to breath new life into the building.  One of our charity objects is to celebrate the heritage of our building.  Our vision for the Miners has been to create a 21st century resource to support the health and wellbeing of our community, equivalent to the endeavours of the Miners in the early 20th century in safeguarding their health through a hospital. So, our Board was excited at the prospect of being able to create a digital record our social heritage. 

 

The project

Our plan was to create a collection of short videos about Our Life with the Miners as an archive of people’s personal history, to train people to make and edit films and to recruit people willing to tell their stories.

 The project started in mid-December just before the winter Covid lockdown which lasted for the whole life of the project.  We were also challenged by serious illness in our project lead.  This led to fewer films being made and the launch of the webpage, online contact form and social media campaign taking place later than planned.     

 

Developing digital skills

Although we were unable to train volunteers in filmmaking, our marketing group found other ways to engage our community, develop digital skills and maintain our profile and community engagement. As well as online Zoom events, we asked our community to tell us what comes to mind when they think of the Miners, we had an excellent response with lovely comments and we have captured and share these here.

 We also involved 50+ community members in making a film of our outreach activities. This process itself have helped to improve the filming and film-making skills of our community and led us to engage new volunteers with digital skills, interests in filming, and confidence in speaking to camera. The people involved as well as people in classes that were part of the video were all excited by the process and it really made a difference to the emotional wellbeing of several of our members – breaking up ‘long winter months in isolation’.

 

Recruiting story tellers

On 10th March 2021 we started a Facebook campaign with a post asking our community if they were born, had given birth, or worked at the Miners. To our amazement we reached 25,531 people, received 4982 engagements and 255 comments within a few days. 

We created another Facebook post on 12th March asking for volunteers to create short films telling the story of My Life and the Miners.  Instead, with a reach of a further 16,600 people, we received 1895 engagements and 47 comments about their fond memories of experiences at the Miners. We boosted this post for 4 days from 12th -16th March and we promoted our page for the rest of the month, which reached a further 8,313 people with 797 engagements.

 

These can be seen below. We hope you enjoy and continue to share your stories with us...

Memories of the Miners

Dawn Edmonds

Memories of the Miners

Susan Paul

Memories of the Miners

Suzanne Gulwell

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Our Miners

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Our Miners

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Our Miners

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Our Miners

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MY LIFE WITH THE MINERS

On 10th March 2021 we created a Facebook post asking our community if they were born/ had given birth or worked at the Miners? To our amazement we had reached 25,531 people, received 4982 engagements and 255 comments.  

Here’s a list of the comments received:-
 

Kristina Harries: I was born there in October 1981 then did my comprehensive school work experience there too with the physiotherapists.

Denise Williams: I was born there. I had my tonsillectomy there when I was about 8yrs old. Remember the balcony on the big house which remains to this day. My father took me there when my leg become swollen after a bee sting and I had injections for this. My father had shrapnel removed from his arm years after the war. I had my daughter there. Did 3 months of my conversion course there to become an RGN.The staff were lovely to work with. I accompanied patients there for treatment and went on lots of training courses there. What a great hospital sorry it's gone. Pleased we have their main building and they use it for a purpose.

Margaret Church: My youngest son was born on Christmas Day 1980 and went into the Christmas Crib, we were made a real fuss off. Photos in paper, special flowers and cards.

June Davies: Born there in 1959, last time I was there in 1996 was to say a last goodbye to Mam - the warmth and kindness of the staff I’ll always remember. It seems now that it was an end of an era as however hard they try in Ystrad it’s not the same - big single rooms which are harder for staff and very frightening and lonely for elderly patients (my sister was there for a while - I popped in every evening after work and it broke my heart to see how unhappy she was).

Lyn Bourne: I had both my children there in 89’ and 92’. My grandmother was a nurse there, she started her training when she was in her 40’s. I remember her being on the children’s ward with the balcony when I was taken in after being knocked down. We always called her nanny nurse. In her later years she was a terrible patient because she would compare how it was in her days, from making the beds to the nurse's uniform. She was a very proud nurse and looked lovely in her uniform.

Susan Jones: I was born there in 1955 as were all my siblings and I had my children there as well. A wonderful hospital and amazing staff, miss the Miners hospital very much now we have nothing.

Sian Saunders: I had both my children there in 1986 and 1991. I worked there from 1983-1986 as a theatre sister. Fab hospital, loved my time there.

Jaci Keep: My two boys were both born there. Spent a week on maternity ward after both births. Caring, thoughtful staff.

Marilyn Warburton: Had three of my children there: - 1973, 1975 & 1978. Had all my operations there. My father was a patient there. Was a great hospital.

Kathryn Virgo: I can remember being taken there by my (very cross) mother when I got a stone lodged up my nose as a child.  Was also treated there in A and E for a nasty scald. Took my son there too, once or twice. Sadly, some loved ones passed away there. I did some bank shifts there as a staff nurse in the mid-nineties. And I worked and volunteered in the Miners Centre Cafe for about four years.

Sheila Jones: I was born there in 1954. My eldest two children were born in Pontypool and then we returned to this area to live in Bedwas and my youngest boy was born in the Miners in 1983. Great delivery and home in less than 48 hours.

Shirley Thomas: Both my sons born there. My youngest was the first baby born in 1984. Loads of attention including picture in local newspaper.

Louise Tugwell: I was born there in 1984 and went back in 2008 on placement when I was a student nurse.

Judith Parfitt: Both myself and my husband were born in Caerphilly Miners in 1958 and 1957. In the 80s I attended all the pre-natal appointments there and our 2 children were born there. My first daughter was delivered by sister Betty Parfitt (no relation) who lived opposite my mum. It was a sad day when it closed.

Wayne Evans: I had a deep vein thrombosis about 15 years ago and the staff in the miners were exemplary. They really were. Very kind and thoughtful. Nothing was too much trouble.

Johnny Rogers: I was born in the Caerphilly Miners' Hospital but unfortunately I don't remember it.

Shan Price: My son was born there 1988, also my dad was in hospital many times from 1966 always the best of care there.

Mair Thomas: I had my baby in an ambulance and they took me to Caerphilly Miners. They were all very good to me and baby was well cared for. My daughter has her birth certificate and she will be fifty nine this year.  All the best to you all.

Karen and Pete O'Brien: Both our children were born at the Miners hospital; our daughter in 1982 and then our son in 1985. A great local hospital we still miss it.

Victoria Reece: I had both my boys in the Miners. Best hospital. Amazing place x x

Nathan Carter: Hospital should never of been closed. The people of Caerphilly have been truly shafted with the closure of the Miners and given Ystrad.

Janine Sommers: I was born there, my eldest daughter was born there and I worked as a student midwife there! Lovely memories.

Steven Skivens: My Mother, Aunty, Wife and Mother in law all worked there. 3 of my kids were born there. Many friends worked there.

Andrea Tuckwell: I was born there in 1950, had my two children there, one of which was born on Christmas Eve.  It was such a lovely atmosphere, the nurses came around in the evening carrying candles and singing carols, lovely memories. It should never have been closed.

Eleanor Burton: This is me in August 2001 when my daughter Ksenia Sarah was born in the Miners. I also worked as a podiatrist there from 1987 to 1998.

Marie Hughes: My daughter was born there in 1999, fab maternity unit, lovely care and staff x

Ellen Rigler: I was born there in 1975 and my daughter was born there in 1999 (in the same room I was born). My son was born there in 2002 and my last son was born there in 2007. This was a great hospital for our area.

Sian Stafford: My mother nursed there. I was born there in 1958 as were my 2 children in 1988 & 1990!

Ann Prosser

Had my tonsils out there and my son was born there. My mother was a domestic there for 26 years. I worked there in catering as assistant then Chef for 32 yrs. Great memories there, some not so nice when I was put on traction with bad back to see Christmas Day babies doing turkey run around wards.

Harry Howells

All three of my children born here, 1974, 76, 78...had my first speeding ticket rushing from college in Rhydyfelin to see my first born in the miners...Wife was not amused. (Welcome Niel)

My second child I was told, would not arrive for a number of hours, so i went home...rang a short time later to find that "she" had already arrived! (Welcome Maria)

I was able to be present at my third child's birth..... (welcome Steven)...afterwards the snip!

I hasten to add, nothing to do with you Son. (Fond Memories)

Emma Phipps-Magill

My mum was admitted to the hospital in 1947 as 6 mths old baby. She had a diseased cheek bone. They tried everything but no medication could stop the infection. The minster was called and she was given last rights. But one doctor asked my grandmother would they be willing to try a new antibiotic on her to see if it would work. We know this today as penicillin. We believe she was the first patient to have the drug in the Miners and it saved her life.

26 years later I was born there and a further 22 years later I had my son there in the very same room I was born. Loved the hospital but hated that St Martins Rd walk at 9 months pregnant for checkups.

Elizabeth Mary Bergelin: Nessa (Ruth Jones) from Gavin and Stacey TV series gave birth in the Miners too.

In the same room I gave birth to my youngest son (8/2004). Some new mums and I raised money for the new maternity unit which sadly didn’t last very long.

Glennydd Kirkby: I was born there in 1962 and had a tonsillectomy there in 1970 on the children’s ward.

Sian Cole: I didn’t give birth there but did have my scans etc there, and met some fabulous other Mums there at post-natal group, with whom I am still good friends 15 years later.

Abby Jones: I was born here in 1973 and have birth to my daughter there in 2004! Was a great hospital with amazing staff. I don't have photos of the actual hospital though, sorry xx

Vivienne Penfold: I was born there, my daughters were born there, and my grandson was born there. Xxx

Emily Jayne Bradford Bolwell: Blessed to have had my 1st child there in October 2006! Midwife team were amazing especially as I was an absolutely petrified teenage parent. They never judged me, and offered so much support and advice. If I remember correctly at the time it was the only place in our trust with a birthing pool!

Also remember plenty of trips to the non-emergency A&E during my school years for various injuries and they were always fab. 

Jenny Jones: Emily Jayne Bradford Bolwell so nice to see our birthing pool. We have 2 in Ystrad now. Loved the miners such a lovely place to work

Annette Roberts: I was born there as well Jen 1956 and I had Leanne there 1974 and Louise 1978, also Louise had Tomas there 1999. It was a lovely hospital. XX

Nicola Marie: I had my twin daughters there. It was a battle to have them born there as they had stopped multiple births by then.

My son was very young and I wanted his dad to bring him to see me every day. So glad I fought to have them, they may have been the last twins born there

Mandy Surridge: I was born in The Miners Hospital in 1966, had my two son’s there and worked there from 1984 till it closed in 2011 and we all had to move up to the new hospital in Ystrad Mynach. Will always miss the Miners Hospital, such a lovely place to work.

Andrea Powell Was Webber: I had my daughter there 25 years ago this year, two other ladies had boys the same day and we shared the same room. All children’s names started with a J and they all ended up in comprehensive school together.

Julie Louise Jones: Both my boys were born in Caerphilly Miners and in the same room. They were also delivered by the same mid wife. Such a lovely hospital.

Norma Kift: I had my tonsils out there! My mum and dad Norman and Ivy Holt always spoke very highly of the Miners.

Rhian Morgan: My dad used to work on the switchboard. X

Lisa Edwards: I was born there on 13th August 1976 and on the same day 17 years later, 13th of August 1993 I gave birth to my daughter in the same room as my mother and brother, who also share this birthday xx

Welsh Webby: My Grandad gasped his last there......Dust and Woodbines....Horrible night....Caring lovely staff who comforted us.

Wendy Summerhayes: The Miners hospital should NEVER have been destroyed, the money spent on Y.M. Hospital should have gone on updating the Miners, they wouldn’t have needed as much as they spent on that waste of space. The miners paid for it so it should have stayed in gratitude to the men who contributed to its existence. My two boys were born there.

Pamela Lintern: I was born there in 1954. I used the accident and emergency a few times for different things, they always looked after you well, the staff were lovely xx

Karen Lee: I had my 4 children there in 1978, 1979,1983 & 1985 under the care of Mr Stout. I had my tonsils, adenoids and sinus operation there in September 1970 and my carpal tunnel operation in 2005. My father passed away there in 1993. The care and friendliness of all staff there was brilliant.

My grandmother who was in her 80's had a prolapse womb in the 1980's and was under the care of Mr Stout too. My grandmother was hard of hearing and kept calling him Mr Trout. I can remember telling my mother that his surname is Stout so she tried explaining to my grandmother that his name was Stout...my grandmother replied...”no he isn't very”. Can always remember that. X

Maionia Parry: My daughter was born there in 1968. They’d just built a new maternity unit at the back - very modern for the time. Spent 48 hours there. My Dad had many ‘spells’ there - as did most of the miners in our village (Cefn Hengoed - Penallta Colliery). He was upset when he could no longer go to Caerphilly but had to go to Llandough Hospital as he knew this meant his chest was deteriorating . My Mam was lovingly cared for there for 6 weeks before she sadly passed away. The hospital felt like ‘ours’ to all the locality and it was a sad day when it closed.

Margaret Church: I had my three children there 1972, 1975 and 1980. Worked in Physio outpatients for many years in Ystrad Mynach Hospital, CDMH physio dept was part of us.

Joy Vickie Henderson Morgans: All my 3 children were born at the Miners hospital from 1980 to 1987. A lovely friendly hospital.

Sian Tomas: Born there in 1974 and had both of my children there 2002 /2006.

Maxine Mary Williams: I had my daughter there in 2006 and I worked there as a domestic from 2004-2010.

Shane An Joe Faulds: I was born there and so was 4 of my 5 children. I also worked there as a HCSW and cleaner and met friends for life there, especially Mama bear Jacqueline Maclennan.

Shirley Taylor: Gave birth to my youngest son here on the 6th November 1980 at 12.25 pm weighing 7 pounds 12 ozs.

Jean Heath: Had my twins there in 1963 when I was 18 yrs and youngest, 1968 should be there.

Jill Rice: I was born in 1960 there and had my own three children there x

Sara Bodman: Both my kids were born there 1996 and 1998, there was a picture of my son as you went up the stairs for years after.

Stephen George: I was born there but says on my birth certificate east glam.

Devhan J Johnson: Both me and my husband were born there in 1990.

Cati Peinado: Devhan J Johnson Me too!

Carolyn Barnaby: I was born there in 1969, then had both my kids there, brilliant hospital, should never have closed. 

Jessica Fones: I was born there in 1988 and gave birth to my second born there in 2009.

Kay King: My 3 children were born there, boy 7-12-78, boy 24-7-81 and a girl 25-11-83.

Kirstie Howarth: I was born here in 1993. I also went there in 2010 to have my leg bandaged as I got bit by a dog.

Anna Matthews: I was born there 85, my eldest in 2006 and second oldest in 2010.

Dawn Winslet: I was born there and had my daughter there in 1998 and my mum used to work there as well and many visits there with my daughter I think they knew us in the end there lol

Aled Turley: They strapped a broken toe for me once. Will I make an appearance in the history books?

Tasha Gittings: My brother and I were born there. 1986 (me) & 1988 (him).

I now volunteer at the Centre and run the Stay & Play groups. 

Carly Louise Wicks: My grandfather worked here, I was also born here and my brothers xx

Kelly Brightman: Born there in 1975. Smoking wasn’t banned outside and my mum waddled out for a cigarette during labour to ease the pain. Different times! I know she had a lovely experience there and staff were really kind to her.

Then in 1994/95 I helped Caerphilly Lyons with a friend and did their Xmas rounds with them and the ladies choir. I was 15 years old and was dressed as Santa’s helper with my friend Lea Avery. We gave out small gifts to people on the wards.. mostly older people. I loved doing this and did it for a few years.

Also did some community work with midwives in around 2004/5 where we were finding ways to support younger parents.

More recently I joined the amazing Side by Side choir and we use one of the older rooms on the left as you go in to sing. Since covid I’ve missed this enormously and can’t wait to come back.

I might have a picture of me after being born if that’s any good but you can’t see the hospital at all. Great project.

Jayne Davies-Ellis: Many of the happiest days of my nursing career spent there.

Elisa Jenkins: My daughters were born there Eva Jenkins 22yrs ago tomorrow and Katy Jenkins 20yrs ago delivered by my wonderful Auntie Rose Llewellyn who was also my Midwife. A very special and wonderful time. Forever grateful x x x.

Linda Seaborne: I was born her. I had my eldest son here. Now I live on the site.

Jessica Penny: I was born here in 1987. My friend’s mum Beth was the receptionist here Amy Evans x

Paul Ann Giffard: Wonderful Hospital, had my three children, there very homely.

Jacqueline Maclennan: Beautiful hospital, had best time's there. I worked there as a cleaner & had my 4 beautiful babies there.

Jennifer De'arth: I was born here January 1954, my 1st born a girl March 1975, my second a boy September 1976. Lovely Hospital x

Susan Matthews: My eldest daughter was born there in 2006. Was a lovely hospital xx

Rhian Morris: I was born there in 1972 and both my boys were born there in 1998 and 2003.

Lovely hospital x

Shened Hodges: A lovely hospital, with a community feel to it.

Samantha Johnson: I was born there 1980. Had my son there in 2010.

Remember my sister being born there in 87 Rhiannon Reeby; do you remember coming to see Sophie?

Kay Gilbert: I was born there and my two daughters.

Mark Jones: Yes I was born in the Miners Jan 1977.

Amanda Jane: Was born there in 1969.

Vicky Jex: Had both my girls there it was a fantastic hospital.

Beci Newton: Geraldine Auntie Margaret would have some lovely memories. Her and Uncle Tommy were there at the same time.

Jayne Reynolds Petty: I had my 3 in the Miners, very good hospital.

Toria Andrea: I was born there in 1984, my mum was an auxiliary nurse there. I then went there in 1999/2000 for work experience. I had my ante natal care there with my first in 2008 but unfortunately had to go to the Gwent to have her.

Best memory ever was being cared for by Tracy Mitchard in A&E when I was a teenager and ending up working with her in RGH before we both left. She's still amazing.

Maria Edwards: I was born here in 1976 and my first born daughter was born here in 1998.

Jeanette Williams: My daughter was born there in 1956.

Anne Ricketts: My daughter was born there.

Nesta Price: Had my tonsils out there!

Angela Melvin: I was born there in 1970.

Allison Read: I was born there in Jan 1970.

Sue Rands: Yes I was born in the Miners, it was a shame it went!!

Peter Harris: My mother worked there and my brother and I believe were born there.

Kirsten Stone: I was born in the miners in 1996.

Tyron Smith: Was born there 10th Feb 83.

Michelle Willetts: I was born in this hospital.

Katie Griffiths: I was born here.

 

We created another Facebook post on 12th March 2021 asking for volunteers to create short films telling the story of Caerphilly Miners’ Hospital but received more comments of their fond memories instead! We had reached 16,600 people, received 1895 engagements and 47 comments.  This post was boosted for 4 days from 12th March – 16th March and reached a further 8,313 people with 797 engagements.

Sarah Gillian Fellows: I was born there in March 1975 and I was the biggest baby born up until that point in that year hehehe. My poor mum.

Jan R DeSouza: I was born in CDMH 1955, both my sons as well, then I ended up working there as RGN, loved every moment.

Linda Phillips: I had my tonsils out there when I was I fifteen, lol.

Dawn Parkes: Great hospital.

Georgina Arnell: I had my leg plastered there after falling down two steps in 1975 xx

Jackie Rapps Edwards: I was born there in 1961 and I had my son 1986 and my daughter 1996. It was a great hospital and it should not of been pulled down, the Miner's worked hard and gave their money to the people and for what.

Carol Carr Dew: My life was saved at Caerphilly Miners. At 5yrs old I suffered from a perforated appendicitis. Dr Dutta a surgeon at the hospital, performed surgery on me which saved my life.

Cilla Messenger: I was born there in 1973. Then went on to have 3 of my children there: - 1993,1995,1998

Cheryl Edwards: My eldest son was born there and my mother was a nurse there.

Brenda Rees: My 3 sons were born there!

Sandra Terry: Been there great hospital.

Linda Greenway: I was born there 1950.

Denise Hall: I was born there.

Ann Bancroft: One of my granddaughters was born there.

Helen Evans: I was born there.

Jackie Dearnaley: My daughter Nicola was born there in 1970 x

Carl Meredith: Born there and had an op there.

Andrew Baggott: I was born there.

Ian Smith: I used to live up the hill from the Miners Hospital. Sad to say I had to give a doctor who worked there a furious telling off!

Deborah Merriman: My Mum was a cook there x

Clive Walby: And me.

Joanne Sullivan: I was born there 1974  and then, as a baby, had my appendix removed there.

Suzann Martin: Had my two children there 1984 & 1987.

Jan Smith: My son was born at Caerphilly Miners.

Patsy White: I was always in A&E lol.

Peter Harris: I was born there and my mother worked there.

Calvin Morgan: I was born there.

Tracey Edwards: I was born there in 1965 and both of my kids, very sad when it closed.

Charlotte Coxe: I was born there so was my eldest.

Kirstin Morgan: I was born in the miners, so were both of my daughters.

Steve Maitland Thomas: Both my sons were born there.

Jackie Bushen: I was born there and my children

Daisy Distancing: My eldest children were born there. I was also sterilized there back in the days when my (then) husband had to sign to give me his permission to have an operation on my body!

Chris Parfitt: I was born at the Miners 65 years ago in March 1956, visited many times in the seventies and nothing but good memories.

Heather Latham: My daughter Sharon was born here 6/9/71 and they were great. My daughter was a big baby 9.6 but we made it through the rain!!!!!

Gwyneth Spadaro-Dutturi: My daughter was born there in 1983. It was election time and the consultant knew I was voting Labour so refused me permission to go to the polling station. I accused him of being a Tory.

Steven Skivens: Born there, 3 of my kids born there, Mom, Aunty, Wife and Mother in law worked there. Dad died there.

Went on trips, parties there and lots of A&E visits.

Nicola O'connell Palmer: My dad was in there when he was 18 yrs with appendicitis and they removed his appendix. Talking many years ago when he worked down the pits. They saved his life, must of been 1920's 30's if I am right.

Leslie Tubo Webster: Wonder if there's a plaque there for the miners? After all they did pay a percentage of their money to build the hospital, just wondering.

Sheila Drew: I had a tooth removed by the butcher dentist. It was such a traumatic time, this was in the 40s.

Kerry Bowden: I was born there 1951!

Penny J Rich: My father, the late Mr D L Arnold was the Obstetrician and Gynaecologist there from about 1958 to about 1978, the Matron then was Matron Thomas. My father really enjoyed working there, they were happy times for him.

Eleanor Burton (newspaper article)

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Emily Jayne Bradford Bolwell

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Tasha Gittings photo of baby bibs:

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In addition to the Facebook comments we received 38 messages through our website in March 2021.  Most of these were from people who were born or gave birth in the Miners.  We also received 6 offers of volunteer help (V 😊) which we are following up. 

TD 😊 I'm an animator who was born in Caerphilly Miners, would love to contribute anyway I can in bringing the history and people back to life, here are a few of my videos https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZUUik3a5OKc https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wY5f30hrVIk

 

SR 😊 I would be interested in volunteering to help in creating videos of the history of Caerphilly miners.

 

SG 😊 I would like to volunteer to help with the history of the Miners project. Please let me know if I can be of assistance 

I was a patient at the maternity unit and after 10 years of trying for a baby and numerous IVF cycles I had my first scan that showed my miracle baby at the miners. I had all may maternity appointments at the miners and saw my midwife there a lot. I had issues so couldn't give birth there needing a consultant but I was back and stayed in to establish breast feeding. My care and experience at the miners was amazing and I miss the hospital and its staff. (Story recorded)

 

ECC 😊 I would like to have more information about volunteering to collect and research stories and information

 

PD 😊 Very interested, how can I help?

 

CR 😊 I am not a resident of Caerphilly but I am a miners daughter, grand daughter and great granddaughter. I am a teacher in Tonyrefail Community School and I live in Gilfach Goch. I don’t know if this would exclude me from this project. I hope not but if possible, I would like to volunteer.

 

TM - I was born in Caerphilly Miners Hospital, the youngest of 8 children in May 1960. I was premature, and my mother passed away shortly after giving birth and I was taken to Cardiff Royal Infirmary as I was less than 2lbs in weight. My father couldn't cope with 7 children under 11 and a prem newborn, so I was adopted by his brother and wife. I have fond memories of the A&E department as I got older, as I was like an accident looking for somewhere to happen. I was so sad when it had to close

 

BSW - I was born in the Miners, my Mam had, had 2 miscarriages she wouldn't buy anything, so when I was born she didn't even have a baby vest, so my Grampi rushed out to get clothes, & it was also Pancake Day so he took her some Pancakes too.

 

CC - During research into my family tree, I have discovered that my great grandmother, who we had always thought had lived her life in Dover, died at the 'Wesley Annexe' in 1946 which I have discovered was the Wesleyan Hall which was annexed to the Caerphilly Miner's Hospital. She is buried in Penyrheol Cemetery. Do you have any further information on the Wesleyan Hall and what type of patients they treated there? I am not aware of any connections between my family who are all from Dover and Reigate with South Wales so it is intriguing to learn that she left her family to live there. Any help you can provide would be much appreciated.

 

RJ - My father was a local historian, so I probably have photos / books. I also did my two weeks work experience there in the planning department and am now a draughtsman.

 

Lucy Collins

My dad died suddenly in 1998 when I was 17, we all rushed down after the ambulance but found out he had passed outside on the main entrance where my mam auntie and little sister were. Every time I go passed it always reminds of awful day because the entrance is still there. 3 years later in 2001 I had my first baby a daughter who I named Seren because she was like a little shining star to me always has been which helped me to get through the grief

 

LP - I gave birth to my son Mathew at Caerphilly Miners Hospital on 2 January 1969. Mathew has lived and worked in Vancouver Canada for many years now and is a member of Vancouver Welsh Society. A few years ago another member of this society asked him was it true that Mathew came from Caerphilly. Mathew said that he was born in Caerphilly Miners. It turned out that this man was a junior doctor at The Miners when Mathew was born. He and his wife had retired to Vancouver. He asked Mathew if I could recall any of the staff working there at that time! Well I could name most of them and remember him, as I was there for nearly two weeks. Small World.

 

KG - I was born in ‘The Miners’’ in 1950; my wife in 1951. My brother-in-law in 1956 and my brother had a hernia operation in 1958. I remember having to stand outside and wave to him whilst my mother brought him to the window - children weren’t allowed in in those days. As an apprentice for BT (then Post Office Telephones) I was taught how to repair the telephone switchboard system (I think the switchboard operator was a gentleman named Blaydon, but I may be wrong). Don’t know if these facts are of interest.

 

KB - Hi my son was born here in 14-10-2000 what a lovely experience with such good midwives

 

KJ - My Dad was there for along time with fractured pelvis about 1947ish and I gave born to 2 sons there 1979 and 1981

 

HE - I was born in the Miners  although later transferred to St David's in Cardiff, as I was premature). I worked as a Midwife in Caerphilly from 1989-2001, some of the happiest times of my life. My daughter was born there in 1992, delivered by my great friend and wonderful midwife, Maggie Davies. My Grandfather Timothy McCarthy was one of the many Miners that contributed money that resulted in the hospital being built. I was very proud to work here.

 

DE - The Miners Hospital holds a lot of memories, having my son Thomas Born in 1992 and my daughter Holly in 1998, the staff were amazing, from the anti-natal classes - scan appointments through to the births, we also attended the A&E department several times, with broken bones being reset, all the memories were happy ones as it’s was small and friendly. Now my son lives on the new estate Beech Tree View, almost on the spot that he was born. Unfortunately no photographs to show the hospital, as before mobile phones.

 

JJ - I was born in the Miners Hospital in 1974. My mum passed away there in 2002 and in 2003 I gave birth to my daughter there.

 

JS - My son Paul was born in dec 24th 1971 in the Miner’s hospital

 

SP - My children were both born at Caerphilly Miners Hospital. My husband was the first father to have been present at the birth of a baby there. He witnessed the birth of our son David. The midwifery staff did everything they could to persuade me to change my mind and not have him with me. In fact right up to just before David’s birth they were still trying to prevent him from coming into the labour ward. They were not impressed when I told them he had a right to be there that they relented.

 

JP - My husband was born in the miners in 1957 and myself in 1958. Our 2 children were born there in the 80s. My first delivered by sister Betty Parfitt (no relation). We visited numerous relatives in the miners as well as using the a&e for our own children with falls bumps and breaks..it was a sad day when it closed.

 

KR - Regarding your 'memories of CDMH', I was born there on 31st October 1959. My mother had been admitted 3 weeks prior to my birth as she had toxaemia. I was born healthy and weighing 10lbs 1oz. We left the hospital 10 days later. At the age of 2, I was admitted into Llanbradach ward (the children’s ward) to have an adenectomy. In those days parents weren't allowed to stay with their child, and I remember breaking my heart every time my parents left. Thankfully my aunt Phyllis Thomas was a domestic at the hospital and she would come and give me a cwtch and my bottle. Over the years I had various other operations and procedures at Caerphilly Miners' and on the 24th June 1987, I gave birth to my daughter in the maternity department. She weighed in a healthy 9lbs 12ozs. The Miners' Hospital holds many memories for me, it was a wonderful hospital with wonderful staff.

 

GB - I have a huge fondness for the Miners. I had my first baby there in 2002, and it was they were fabulous. In 2006 I was pregnant with me second baby - and at the scan was told it was second and third - TWINS! In what was quite a stressful time, the staff at the hospital were amazing. I'd be happy to share my story.

 

EK - My mother was a Nurse, I was born in Caerphilly miners and worked as a Midwife there. We are a Abertridwr family.

 

SM - My son was born 5/9/1972 in Caerphilly Miners. I think the maternity unit had only been open a few weeks. It was the same week Carrefour supermarket opened in Caerphilly (the first large supermarket in the area, perhaps Wales). I remember watching the queues of traffic on the road to get to Carrefour, the bypass wasn’t built then.

 

CW - I was born in the Miners hospital in the 90s my grandparents also worked there as a nurse and hospital porter

 

DM - In 1992 I had my daughter in Caerphilly Miners and I got talking to another lady on the ward and during our conversation we realised that we were both born in Caerphilly miners on the same week and we were both having our children in Caerphilly miners and both our brothers were born in the same week at Caerphilly miners.

 

KG - Born here in 2001 January

 

JB - I was born in the Miners 1961. My 2 children born there in 1986 1988

 

AM - I was born here, at 11.55pm on the 13th March 1984 during the miners strikes and electricity cuts and at a time when even wards were closed off due to lack of money and staff and power. Thanks to all the staff that helped my mother to have me. My siblings were all born here too, and the endless trips to A&E, and outpatients, physio etc..... Seems a lifetime ago. Something put in the community by the community, then taken away. So sad

 

JD - I have birth 3 times here. The third time I was in the newspaper whilst on the ward for having a smoke free baby on 08.03.1999

 

CT - I was born there

 

GE - Both my sister and I were born in the Miners. My oldest cousin was also born there and I have a vivid memory of being called by my uncle to go to his home and get the overnight bag for them - I’d only recently passed my driving test and was terrified!

 

KD - I was born in the Miners in 1967. It remained our hospital as we stayed local. I was fortunate enough to give birth to my 3 children there also, two of them in the same room. I think I was the first to give birth after it became midwife led on March 4th 2002

GH -  I worked there as a nurse and a midwife 1965 -68 and again 1972 - 80 and again 1990 -2000


EB - My son was born in the new maternity unit in the Miners, August 2004. My oldest son was born in The Gwent in 2002, but I came back to the miners maternity unit for a couple of days to recuperate. This was in the old maternity unit.

MS - My mam gave birth to my twin brothers at the miners in October 1961. 16 months later she gave birth to me and my twin sister My twin sister and I were born in the miners in February 1963. My mam had to travel from Penybryn (Gelligaer) in an ambulance The story goes that we were almost born in the ambulance as the ambulance got stuck in the snow

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