Former mill manager's house, Bridgend

Former mill manager’s house, Brewery Lane

This building, now the Riverside Tavern, was erected in the 1790s as the suitably grand home for the manager of Bridgend’s new woollen mill. Later it was home to a brewing family.

The Glamorgan Agricultural Society (formed in 1772 to encourage improvements to Vale of Glamorgan farming) decided in 1790 to erect a mill in Bridgend which would feature a Spinning Jenny, invented in 1764 to bring unprecedented automation to weaving. The new mill complex took the wool through various processes, previously carried out at separate sites. The society hoped that this demonstration of technology would inspire people to set up other mills across the region, to enable Glamorgan to sell more of its wool as finished cloth rather than as cheap raw material.

The manager’s house was called Cae’r Felin (Mill Field). The mill complex lasted for less than 30 years, after which the site was used as a tannery and then the Stiles Brewery. The Stiles family lived in Cae’r Felin, which was renamed Brewery House. In the 1920s the house became a pub, known as Brewery House until the 1970s, when it was renamed the Jolly Brewer.

Sidney Connolly, who was a haulier at Stiles Brewery, joined the army in 1914 and was wounded and gassed in France during the First World War. He was awarded the Military Medal in 1916 for his bravery. He died in action in April 1918, leaving a widow and two small children. He is named on the town’s war memorial.

The brewing heritage of this area of Bridgend is recalled by the names of Brewery Lane and Brewery Field, home to Bridgend Rugby Football Club.

Postcode: CF31 4AP    View Location Map