Pontypridd Museum, Bridge Street
The museum occupies the former Tabernacl chapel, built in 1861 for Welsh-language Baptist services. Local Baptists had first met in houses and then, from 1809, in an upstairs room at the White Horse Inn, adjacent to where the Maltsters' Arms was later built.
It’s said that Tabernacl chapel was designed by Rev Edward Roberts, the chapel’s own minister, although this was not mentioned in obituaries when he died in 1895.
The porch was added when the chapel’s interior was remodelled in 1910. Pontypridd’s prosperity was then at its height , and this is evidenced by the Art Nouveau stained glass and fine ceiling which visitors can appreciate inside the museum.
The interior woodwork was made from Russian and Polish pine. Ships which carried export coal from the South Wales coalfield often returned with cargoes of timber, some of which was used in construction projects. Large quantities of timber were also needed for pit props (lining the tunnels in coal mines to prevent roof collapse).
The chapel closed as a place of worship in 1983, reopening as a museum in 1986. Its pipe organ is still used when occasional concerts are held in the building.
The museum features a permanent exhibition about the history of Pontypridd, and hosts temporary exhibitions.
Postcode: CF37 4PE