Cwm Coke Works

Cwm Coke is an abandoned coke works near Beddau in the Rhondda Valley, South Wales UK. Cwm Coke's origins lie with the Great Western Railway and its insatiable hunger for coal. The GWR sunk pits at the Cwm site in 1909 as well as in other areas of the Rhondda, but Cwm didn't become known for its coke until 1958 when the coking ovens and associated plant for producing coke and refining the by-products of the coking process were installed. During this time the existing colliery site saw a £9 million investment, by the 1970's the two pits 'Margaret' and 'Mildred' and the coking plant were the workplace of 1,500 men this combined effort produced 515,000 tons of coke per annum. The colliery continued production of coal right up until privatisation of the National Coal Board in 1986. 

The coking plant remained in use until 2002 producing the low sulfur coke that the foundries of Port Talbot required. The site now sits derelict and despite being quite heavily battered there is still plenty to see, however for me the most impressive aspect was the site's scale - the place is vast. It reminded me of the similar plants of Belgium and Germany.