Pen y Cymoedd Wind Farm Community Fund is delighted to support the development of a major new community resource for Aberdare and the Cynon Valley. St. Elvan’s Church is an iconic building in the heart of the town and is set to re-invent itself for the 21st century and beyond. The Church’s Community Heritage Project has been awarded a Vision Fund grant of £491,869 by the Community Fund – along with £786,700 from the Heritage Lottery Fund, £47,000 from Cadw, £40,000 from the National Churches Trust and £12,000 from the James Pantyfedwen Foundation.
The pioneering proposals for St Elvan’s, which towers as a landmark above the town, centre on a complete refurbishment and the creation of a community heritage space to make a more welcoming facility for all those who live in and visit the Cynon Valley. Plans include the creation of a cafe and Tourism Information Centre, an arts and crafts area, an exhibition area, additional rooms on mezzanine levels for community use and the provision of interactive history facilities.
Marc Phillips, Chair of Pen y Cymoedd Wind Farm Community Fund said “this is a substantial grant award, and the benefits to be delivered match it. Not only will this iconic building be safeguarded, its redesign will provide a range of new community facilities for Aberdare and the surrounding area. We are particularly pleased to be supporting the creation of a new Community Heritage Officer post, the recruitment and training of a volunteer team and the provision of work & educational placements. The Welsh language and Welsh culture has a long and powerful history in the Valley, and the project will highlight and celebrate this rich heritage.”
Father Robert Davies SSC, Vicar of Aberdare said, “The Community Fund award is fantastic news for our parish and the community. It is our mission through this project to give confidence to the wider community by re-ordering St Elvan’s church and creating a vibrant hub that will serve and support people’s needs both culturally and in practical terms.”