History of the welfare ground

1921 - Nelson Welfare Association Formed.

1925 - Miners Welfare ground secured.

1927 - Tennis courts completed.

1929 - Bowling green and pavilion added.


Children's playground and grassed area with paddling pool and toilets completed.

Football field and changing rooms added.

Putting green and seated walks added.

Nelson Welfare Association derives a weekly income of 2d per week from each Nelson man employed at the various collieries and works in the district. Also from a large number of private subscribers.

1944 - An agreement was reached on 8th June 1944 between the then District Council and Nelson Welfare Association agreeing that the council should pay the sun of £50 per annum less any rates due on the ground in order to support the Welfare. The three ward members of the Council would then be elected as members of the Association. Thus a partnership was formed and the council gradually took responsibility for the ground, though the miners continued with their subscriptions.

1950's - The grounds started to deteriorate after the war.

1970's - Ground now very run down. However the council did mark the football field, as it was still in use by the village football teams.

1981 - A draft proposal plan for Nelson and Treharris was drawn up (in conjunction with the Mid Glamorgan County Council) which designated our Miners' Welfare ground and the surrounding farmland for industrial use. Residents objected to the loss of the Welfare Ground and the necessary compulsory purchase of a total of 50 acres of greenfield site. A local public enquiry was held at the community center, but the inspector found for the council.

1983 - The local plan was adopted, followed five years later by the construction of the Nelson bypass.

May 1995 - The WDA applied for outline planning to raise a 47-acre earthen plateau with a view to construct a single user factory (3 buildings) for B1, B2 and B8 uses (High-Tech) to encourage foreign investment. Residents were wholehearted in their objection to the plan.

13th July 1995 - Nelson Community Council resolved to object totally to the planning application and seek the de-designation of the site as an industrial development area, and requests that sport and leisure facilities be re-instated there. It was also resolved that the clerk seek out a professional person to advise the council on these matters and if necessary attend RVDC planning meetings to state the community councils objections. This was done on 5th September 1995 by Mr. Laurence Forse of D.J.Harmer Ptns, who re-stated the numerous objections to this development. He pointed out that; "10 years on, collieries have closed and since no development has taken place so far, we question the necessity of despoiling 47 acres of green fields, when other sites were now readily available".

23rd August 1995 - A public meeting was attended by 400 residents, members of RVDC, Nelson Community Council and a spokesman for the WDA, who gave assurances that the WDA would never develop and area against the wishes of the residents.

24th August 1995 - A petition of 916 standard letters, representing 916 households was presented to the RVDC.

6th September 1995 - Planning meeting at Ystrad Fawr, Ystrad Mynach attended by great numbers of Nelson residents, who has previously handed in petitions to the Welsh Office and begged the secretary of state for Wales to intervene on our behalf. Our case was put to the councilors present and the vote was taken. All Plaid Cymru members and Independents supported us together with some Labour members. The vote went against the officer's recommendation by a small majority. Then the chairman decided another count was required, then a third count was taken; by which time the voting was drawn. The chairman used his casting vote for the development to be granted.

1995 - 1997 - Nelson Action Group has sought assistance from all political bodies. From local councilors , district councilors, Welsh Assembly members, the WDA and the european parliament - sadly to no avail.

1997 - 1200 signatories claimed "perspective rights" to the miner's welfare ground. Also in 1997 CCBC issued compulsory purchase orders for the welfare and 40 acres surrounding it belonging to two separate farmers. Nelson Action Group objected on behalf of residents, as did both farmers. There were 80 non-statutory objectors and 2 statutory objectors.

1997 - 1998 - CCBC purchased the Miner's welfare ground on behalf of the WDA for the paltry sum of £60,000.

24th March 1998 - Inspectors inquiry.

December 1998 - WDA applies for full planning permission.

January 1999 - Petition of 520 signatures and numerous letters of objection. 1999 inspectors' inquiry finds in favor of local authority.

28th July 1999 - Nelson Action Group applied to register the Miner's Welfare Ground as our village green. This was the first application of its type in CCBC. The next step should have been a local public inquiry by an independnet inspector. Later, three other applications were made, heard at local public inquiries and rejected. Nelson Action Group were not granted a hearing, but were informed by CCBC that our claim had not been refuted by the WDA who were now the landowners. However there were legal technicalities involved that could only be dealt with by the High Court.

15th / 16th January 2002 - Our case was heard at the High Court. Nelson Action Group was represented by a Bar Pro Bono Barrister from Bristol (Mr. Adams). Barrister Mr. Vivian Chapman, the independent inspector who had heard the previous applications, and could not refute our claim, represented CCBC. Barrister Mr. Graham Walters represented the WDA. At the end of the two-day hearing the judge reserved judgment.

23rd May 2002 - Judgment was made in favor of the WDA on a technicality, though CCBC still had to make the final decision. They wasted no time in calling a special meeting of the council and rejected our application.

July 2007 - The Welsh Assembly Government submits a planning application to CCBC for development of a "prestige business park and associated works" on the Ty-Du  / welfare ground site.