The Pool In The Park

A Memory of Bargoed

Although I was born and raised in Bristol, my dad was born in Bargoed, but not of Welsh parentage as grandparents moved there from Bristol in about 1909. Their 4 youngest children were born there, Dad being the youngest. So, I spent about 2 weeks there during school holidays at my uncle & aunt's house on Park Road. My Nan, who lived with us in Bristol, would take me with her on her visits when we would take the train to Newport, then catch the bus to Caerphilly and another one to Bargoed, then have to walk up the hill to Park Road. I still remember going to the Hanbury to see an occasional movie, particularly "High Noon" with my Uncle Bert (who worked as a Powder Monkey at the pit) and, of course, swimming at the open-air pool in the park. A very vivid memory as the water was always so cold, especially when you first got in, but it was always such fun. Unfortunately, the wet weather would frequently put a stop to that! Sadly, my Nan died at my uncle's house when I was 14 and is buried at Brithdir cemetery with my grandfather. My husband, myself and our daughters emigrated to Canada in early 1972 and when we are over visiting my brother in England, we try to make a visit to Bargoed and have to pass Factory Road (where Dad was born) on our way to visit the cemetery. Our last visit to Bargoed was in 2009, but I have a feeling that it will be our last, unfortunately, but at least I have the memories.

Comments & feedback

Mon Aug 4th 2014, at 9:02 am

rthomas commented:

I remember the pool very well. In 1955 my mother took my sister and I to the pool on a beautiful sunny day. She took turns wading us out and back for hours. While waiting for my turn somebody kicked me off the ledge and I ended up sitting on the bottom of the pool drowning. I saw all the feet around me and said to myself here I go. Suddenly a hand dragged me up by my hair, took me to the side of the grass verge and gave me mouth to mouth. Looking up I gazed into my mothers eyes and she said " welcome back my loved one it's not your turn yet " then threw me back into the pool for good measure. I was never scared of the water after that but the memory of the park pool has remained with me for 60 years and will always remain with me. Thanks Mam, God was with us that day. I love Bargoed and always will.

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