The Open Hearth, Panteg

button-theme-canalThe Open Hearth, Panteg

This pub is named after the steel-making process once used at the nearby steelworks. It stands alongside the navigable Monmouthshire & Brecon Canal. This section was built in the 1790s as the Monmouthshire Canal.

The pub was previously known as the Railway Inn. It was close to Panteg & Griffithstown station on the Pontypool to Newport railway, which was opened in 1852 by the canal company. The tracks have long since vanished – their route is now a cycling and walking path – but the main road which ran alongside them is still known as Station Road. The tracks were further west than those of the surviving railway through Pontypool & New Inn station.

When it was auctioned in 1876, the Railway Inn’s facilities included a “bar parlour”, large taproom, club room, three bedrooms, a stable, coach house and garden. The inn was a venue for community activities. In 1892 the local branch of the National Amalgamated Labourers’ Union (later part of the T&GWU) was formed here.

Panteg steelworks opened in the 1870s, partly as a facility for rolling steel into sheets. It also made steel, using the “open hearth” process which had recently been invented by German engineer Wilhelm Siemens. The process used pre-heated gas to burn scrap steel and blast-furnace iron. It was slower than the alternative Bessemer process, but this enabled closer control of the steel’s quality.

The factory was owned by Baldwins from 1902 until it became part of the national British Steel Corporation in 1967. British Steel was privatised in 1988 and Panteg ceased steel production in 1996. In 2003 a decision was taken to close the stainless-steel rolling facility, with the loss of 116 jobs. The site was redeveloped for housing.

Postcode: NP4 5DR    View Location Map

Website of The Open Hearth

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