Cwmbran has long been a town centred on its community. ELIZABETH BIRT looked back at some of the biggest events held in the town over the past seven decades.

THE Cwmbran Big Event has been held every year since 2011 - but this year's was slightly different, as it was the first to be entirely-run by Cwmbran Community Council. Thousands attend the event each year, with businesses, community organisations and more all coming together to help make a successful day for the town, with games, demonstrations and activities.

(Some of the crowds at the Big Event earlier this year)

(A sporting demonstration at Cwmbran's Big Event this year)


Trevethin man jailed for assault

Garndiffaith man loses almost nine stone in under a year to help control his Type Two diabetes

Poppy Appeal rewards Pontypool youngster for collecting spare change

Chairman of Cwmbran Community Council, Cllr Anthony Bird said “We knew how important this event was to the people of Cwmbran.

"It was such a wonderful chance for the whole community to come together. In such a special year for the town, we were delighted that we were able to put on such an amazing event for everyone to enjoy. “

(The raft race is a popular addition to the Big Event. This is the Be The Best Military Fitness A team taking on the Cwmbran netball Team in 2015)

This year’s event saw people sign the ‘70th birthday’ card for the new town.

Cllr Bird said: “I am delighted that Cwmbran Community Council was able to step in and deliver this wonderful event.

"As I stood on the stage to formally open the event as chairman of the Council, I could not help but bristle with pride at our achievement in staging such a fantastic event. It was wonderful to see the whole town coming together in this, the 70th year of Cwmbran as a New Town.

"A wonderful day for a wonderful community.

"I wish to record my personal thanks to the event team, who worked so hard to deliver such a marvellous occasion. I want to pay particular tribute to the hard working council staff who did so much in the build up to the day and at the event itself. They even kept the rain at bay!

"Thanks also to our sponsors and partners who helped deliver the event and the elected members of Cwmbran Community Council for their vision and ambition to stage such a huge community celebration.

"I can’t wait for 2020!”

(Father Christmas abseiling down the side of a building before the Cwmbran Christmas lights switch on in 2016)

Cwmbran Shopping Centre is also a hub for activities, with free events taking place regularly over the last few decades. There have been visits from Welsh rugby internationals with the World Cup relay ball, the recent Hallowe’en wizarding fun and many more. But the big one is the Christmas lights.

(Hundreds of people wait for the switch on of the Christmas lights in Cwmbran in 2015)

Switching on the Christmas lights is a big deal for Cwmbran Centre and its visitors. In the past, the likes of Welsh footballer Danny Gabbidon, radio hosts Kam and Sally and band Only Boys Aloud have all thrown the switch, watched by thousands as they perform and/or press the button to light up Cwmbran.

Centre manager Rikki Teml said of the event last year: “Our traditional light switch on is something that people look forward to all year long, including myself. There’s nothing we love more at Cwmbran than watching families having fun together.”

(Race for Life 2019 in Cwmbran. Picture

The annual Race for Life is also an important fixture in the town's calendar. As well as raising vital funds and awareness for charity, the event organisers also do their bit for the community, with regular litter-picking sessions.

(World Cup rugby ball in Cwmbran Centre. L-R Graham Price, Daniel Harris of Cwmbran RFC, Keri Ann Jones of Ysgol Cwmraeg, Paul Rosier of Croesyceiliog RFC. Back row: Alan Carter, Mayor of Torfaen and Kenny Walters. November 3, 1991.)

(Cllr Fiona Cross, Executive Member for the Environment, Tony Reynolds, Mike Villars, Jane Dorsett, Samantha Lowery, Lynne Howles, David Haylins, and Ron Ford at the launch of the Caru Cymru litter picking hub in Cwmbran. Picture: Keep Wales Tidy)

This is part of a series of features marking the 70th anniversary of Cwmbran:

Seventy years on: 'It is incredible to see how much Cwmbran has changed'

Burtons, Lucas Girling, Saunders Valve - a look back at the economic history of Cwmbran New Town at 70