Children of Craig-y-Nos: A story of friendship, innocence and the strength of shared experience

Children of Craig-y-Nos airs on ITV Cymru Wales on Monday at 8pm

Nowadays Craig-y-Nos Castle is a place where couples can get married or where people can spend a relaxing night in picturesque surroundings.

However, one hundred years ago when the castle opened its doors as a sanatorium, it provided a very different kind of accommodation.

Its purpose was to act as a hospital to look after children and teenagers who were suffering from a widely feared infectious disease: tuberculosis.

Craig-y-Nos Castle, situated in the Swansea Valley, is now a wedding venue but in its past it was a very different place

Young children with the disease would be separated from their families and taken to Craig-y-Nos to be cared for.

Some would face strict isolation and enforced bed rest. Others had their beds placed on outdoor balconies to ensure they were breathing in fresh air - no matter what the weather was like.

Methods of treating TB at the time were extreme when compared with today's standards, but the accounts of those who stayed at Craig-y-Nos help to paint a picture of the fear and the uncertainty which surrounded the disease back then.And despite their experiences, Craig-y-Nos holds a special place in the hearts of many of those who spent their childhoods there.

Sylvia Moore spent five years in Craig-y-Nos but says her life would never have played out as it did had it not been for the hospital

Looking back fondly on her time at Craig-y-Nos, Sylvia Moore believes many of the positive things in her life would never have happened had it not been for those five years she spent in the hospital.

"Without this place I certainly wouldn't be here today," she says.

"I wouldn't have my children. I'm 80, it's a long while, and looking back on it, some people would say 'I don't believe it happened' but I look at it the other way round that it very much happened and I'm glad it did."

Several years after leaving Craig-y-Nos one former patient was so determined to chart her own history that, upon doing so, she "tapped into fifty years of lost Welsh history".

Anne Shaw took it upon herself to reach out and try and establish contact with some of those children who had experienced life at Craig-y-Nos.

Writing a blog and putting adverts in local newspapers inviting people to come forward, she said she and her husband were blown away by the response.

"He was flabbergasted, he said 'the phone hasn't stopped ringing all night!'" Anne explained.

"He said I've got all these people from Wales ringing me up and I don't know what they're talking about.

"I ended up with 150 case histories and that's when I kind of realised I had tapped into fifty years of lost Welsh history."

Children of Craig-y-Nos is a story of friendship, innocence, sacrifice and perseverance and offers an insight into a part of Welsh history many would not have known existed.

You can watch the programme on the ITV Cymru Wales website.