Vanished Wales: Bush Houses - The Valleys community that was wiped off the map

Visit Cwm Clydach Country Park near Tonypandy in the Rhondda and you’ll find a peaceful place.

Stroll through the park’s woodland and around its lakes, and you’d be mistaken for thinking it has always looked and felt this way.

But this modern green space was once home to the Bush Houses.

The houses were both typical of many valleys terraces, but also detached enough from the wider community to feel very unique.

Built in the 1860s, they were home to more than 300 people, and they formed a tight knit community that was full of life.

Made up of rows of typical Rhondda Valley terraced homes, the Bush Houses were isolated from other streets in the area, forming a community within a community.

In a similar way to other industrial mining communities from the Victorian period - such as Troedrhiwfuwch and Troedrhiwgwair - it came to an end in the second half of the twentieth century. 

In 1969 the Bush Houses were demolished, marking the end of a way of life.

Despite there being no physical trace of the houses left, the spirit of the community has lived on. 

Each year, former residents of the old Bush Houses reunite to celebrate their shared past.

Watch Vanished Wales on ITV Cymru Wales at 7pm on Friday, February 9, and catch up afterwards on ITVX.