Once described as being a “little Switzerland” due to its winding roads and pine forests, Pontrhydygroes is a village lying in the picturesque Ystwyth valley which still has remarkable visible mining heritage in the form of a count house, miners bridge - and the Miners Arms Inn!
Pontrhydygroes was integral in playing its part in the mining industry of Mid Wales with several mines and buildings in the area being a hive of activity at the time - two pubs the Lisburne Arms and the Miners Arms
(which is still thriving today), the Counting House - the place where the miners were paid and a mining college was also set up to educate the miners. Numerous chapels in and around the village were built due to the various religions bought in by miners from various parts along with mining cottages a row of which, even though now modernised, can still be seen on the outskirts of Pontrhydygroes, called New Row.
The Miners Bridge originally collapsed in 1920 and with the help of funding from a Cydcoed grant, the Plynlimon Heritage Trust through Pentir Pumlumon
went ahead and the bridge was re-built in 2002. The footbridge enables direct access to Coed Maenarthur,
where there is a walk provided by the Forestry Commission Wales.
The Hafod Estate
, is recognised as one of the finest examples in Europe of a Picturesque landscape. Its most celebrated owner, Thomas Johnes (1748-1816), built a new house in this remote location and laid out its grounds in a manner suited to displaying its natural beauties in sympathy with the 'Picturesque principles' fashionable at the time, with circuit walks allowing the visitor to enjoy a succession of views and experiences. Johnes also used the land for farming, forestry, and gardening, in each case trying out new ideas and experimental methods. Hafod became an essential destination for the early tourist in Wales.
The walks have been recently restored, making the Hafod an excellent place to enjoy the scenic countryside.
The Hafod Estate
is another popular attraction for those looking for the tranquility of the Ystwyth Valley. Hafod meaning Summer House, lies near the village of Pontrhydygroes on the B4574.