Discover our history
Welcome to Torfaen Museum
Here you will find a wide range of resources whether you are looking for support with a research project, interested in the history of Torfaen or planning to visit us. Drawing upon over 40 years of collecting and study, we have plenty of stories to share. Through them, come and explore Torfaen’s fascinating heritage.
The History of Torfaen
Pontypool 'Pooler' RFC
Meet the People of Torfaen
Torfaen Museum was established by the Torfaen Museum Trust in 1978, a registered charity with the purpose and intention to “preserve, interpret, disseminate and celebrate local culture and bring the culture of other communities to the communities of Torfaen and beyond.”
Guided by this mission statement, the Trust has developed the Museum over the last 45 years so that it may showcase the history of Torfaen, from Pontypool town’s early foundation in the iron and tin industries to the mining communities of Blaenavon and the development of Cwmbran New Town in the 1950s. It is hoped that through its policies of collecting and interpreting these stories, the Trust may better bring to life the history of our county for both current and future generations.
The Museum itself is governed by a strong Board of Trustees and run by a small team of staff. This includes a Curator, Administrator, a team of front-of-house staff and several dedicated volunteers.
The Building and Collections
Today the building remains divided by the original bays although now they house our exhibitions rather than horses. The central courtyard provides a quiet and tranquil spot for a cup of tea or to listen to the birds in the adjoining Pontypool Park.
The collections at Torfaen Museum are wide-ranging, from household white goods of the 1950s to the Blaenavon fire engine that protected the streets in the 19th century. Our social history collection represents the lives of a wide variety of people throughout the 19th and 20th centuries, with a special focus on childhood and toys. We hold a permanent art collection while artefacts from Llantarnam Abbey and the areas surrounding Cwmbran capture glimpses of life in the Medieval era and earlier.
We also hold the national showcase of Japanware, including items from the collections of Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum of Wales. Learn more about this beautiful art on our Japanware page.
Tel: 01495 752036
Amgueddfa Torfaen Museum,
10am till 4pm
1pm till 4pm