Historic Timeline for the Pontypridd YMCA
Formation of the YMCA in Pontypridd
Ping Pong is the first ever activity at the YMCA in their old room on Taff Street except Bible studies and lectures
They consider forming a YMCA football club, not mentioned again until 1908
YWCA held a jumble sale in the YMCA building and paid the YMCA a share of the profit: £6
Plans are drawn for a YMCA building in Pontypridd. It includes a swimming pool, café, a hostel and a shooting range. These things were not part of the building that opened just five years later.
The YMCA decide to form a Ladies Auxiliary
First membership cards were issued, on leather. Members purchased them for three years memberships.
A New Buildings Committee is appointed and begins the purchase of the Leasehold Interests. They also begin raising funds for the building.
A Competition for Plans and Designs was launched this year. By September, 22 sets of Plans and Designs had been received; the winning designs being numbers 11, 12 and 3 respectively.
The Deed Poll is completed with copies sent to the General Secretary’s Office and the original deposited at the Bank. Plans for a swimming baths as part of the design were dropped to prevent further delay to the building.
Secretary proposed to open Youth Department three times a week, lowest age was 14.
March 25th the first sod is cut for the new building.
The new Pontypridd YMCA building opened by Sir Clifford Cory, MP.
The YMCA gets a rugby team.
Princess Mary visited the Pontypridd YMCA.
The YMCA is helping soldiers and sailors who fought in the war.
Due to an alarmingly high unemployment rate the YMCA offer unemployed people to use the YMCA rooms for free in order to keep people of the street.
Miners Strike used the rooms for shoe repairs.
Prince George and Princess Mary visited the Juvenile Institution Centre in Pontypridd on December 18th and the YMCA are lending out a helping hand to prepare for the event.
Boys’ Club opened on October 14th. The Boys’ Club had asked the YMCA for permission to built on top of the existing building. The Boys' Club was opened by H.R.H. The Duke of Gloucester K.G.K.T.
The YMCA Swimming Club meet for lessons in the Lido.
30th of October: Princess Helena Victoria visits Pontypridd YMCA to open the Michaelmas Fair.
She worked with YMCA, YWCA and founded the YWCA Women’s Auxiliary Force.
American soldiers came for tea and dances. Some white soldiers tried to deny black soldiers access to the YMCA activities but the YMCA board maintained that the YMCA was for everyone
Boys’ Club and YMCA have a grand concert in aid of Red Cross and St. John Fund.
The Shelley Players founded in the YMCA.
Cor Meibion Pontypridd (Pontypridd Male Voice Choir) were formed in the YMCA and they rehearsed in the Shelley Hall. Their original conductor was Gwilym T. Jones and when he passed away in 1956 a plaque in his memory was installed in the YMCA.
Frankie Vaughn (described on ticket to “a Grand Dance” as Britain’s Top Recording Star).
Shelley Singers perform in Shelley Hall on April 16th 1959.
Tom Jones performed in the YMCA almost by accident. He would have performed in Pontypridd before but never in the YMCA. The lead singer of Senators failed to show up for a gig and the band found Tom Jones is a near by pub and persuaded him to join the band for the evening - in exchange for beer. Alcohol was not yet permitted on the YMCA grounds.
Girls and women are increasingly taking part in the YMCA organisation generally.
HRH The Princess Royal visited the YMCA’s of South Wales on May 15th, 1962
There were 573 members, hereof 156 women
Tom Jones records himself singing in a bathroom in the YMCA. Years later the recording goes to auction.
Duke of Gloucester visit to Boys’ Club Week opening in October
September: Bronze in Duke of Edinburgh Award.
R. John a boxer from the Pontypridd YMCA participates in Junior Championships held in the London Albert Hall.
April: Silver Duke of Edinburgh expedition.
Boys’ Club finished their activities and the top floor became part of the YMCA.
Renovation of main hall, Shelley Hall and basement.
Friday Night Discos at the YMCA.
Shelley Ladies celebrated their 50th anniversary
International Youth Year - fair at the YMCA
Welsh YMCAs visit each other on a regular basis = a great community of YMCAs.
People First started their activities in the YMCA for people with learning difficulties.
Friday night dances stopped
12th May 1990 Annual YMCA football tournament at Hawthorn Comprehensive School, Pontypridd. Pontypridd YMCA players Ross Chalmers, Kieran Lacey, Robert Morgan, Ian Vinning, Christopher Perret, Craig Stanley, Martyn Williams, Darren Avery, Delme Davies, Kevin Hughes, Carwyn Lewis.
1st phase of refurbishment (middle floor) completed on September 5th. This
however meant that the basement and top floor went out of use.
Basement reopened and refurbished after having been unused since 1997
Blue Light Discos in the Shelley Hall- The police would have picked people up and drive them home again after the party
Nursery PY Angel Tots opened
New improved gym opened
The Centenary was celebrated in the YMCA with shows, speeches, an exhibition and a parade through town.
The Pontypridd YMCA closed its doors in November.
The Pontypridd YMCA Memories Project begins.
The Friends of the YMCA is still going strong.
A new era for the YMCA begins… Do you want to join us?