The First Minister Carwyn Jones will visit the site of the worst mining disaster in British history later to launch a major appeal for the first ever Welsh National Mining Memorial.
440 men and boys were killed in 1913 after a huge explosion at the Universal Colliery site in Senghenydd. The disaster affected the lives of almost every household in the Aber Valley.
The Aber Valley Heritage Group has invited the First Minister to the village to launch an appeal for a poignant mining memorial.
The Heritage Group are developing plans to erect a landmark memorial close to the former Universal Colliery site that will be dedicated to all mining communities across Wales, while also honouring the victims of one of the worst colliery disasters in British history.
The project is moving forward thanks to financial support from Caerphilly County Borough Council, Heritage Lottery Fund and various community contributions.
HLF has awarded Aber Valley Heritage Group £48,800 for a programme of activities that will raise awareness of the disaster in addition to creating the memorial. These include researching public record office archives to identify the victims, training in oral history, digital story telling and creative writing and ceramic workshops to produce the commemorative tiles for each miner to be used in the new memorial.
The project will include a landscaped garden, a wall of remembrance, a small parking area together with a statue to be designed by artist Les Johnson providing a symbolic, poignant and recognisable landmark which will be a focus of respect for Welsh Miners.
For more information about the scheme or to find out how you can make a donation please contact Aber Valley Heritage Group on (02920) 830444 / 5 or email firstname.lastname@example.org