A project which allows people to read about the history of Wales on their smartphones is providing an insight into a teddy bear factory in Abergavenny.

HistoryPoints has teamed up with Abergavenny Museum and builders’ merchant Robert Price to tell the story of Wendy Boston’s soft toy factory, and they are doing it with a very modern approach.

Barcodes on the building opposite the old site of Wendy Boston’s factory – which is no longer there – on Queen Street, Abergavenny, can be scanned with a smartphone or tablet. After scanning the code, users will receive a short history of the factory directly from the HistoryPoints website.

Molly Pike, Robert Price Marketing Manager, said: “We’re delighted to have assisted with this HistoryPoints barcode location. As a local business based in Abergavenny for over 170 years ourselves, we’re pleased to see this nod to the past to help mark the history of our terrific town.”

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Wendy Boston Bears, with their pioneering safety and hygiene features, were once ideal Christmas presents for children around the world. They revolutionized bear manufacturing by introducing the first washable bear to Britain in 1954.

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(One of Wendy Boston's famous teddies)

Mrs Boston and her husband Ken moved to Wales in the Second World War after an air raid damaged their home in Birmingham, and started making and selling soft toys. Their business eventually employed 100 people. Most of their employees were women from Abergavenny, Crickhowell and Hengoed.

The company also pioneered locked-in nylon eyes – eliminating the risk of dangerous wires becoming exposed.

By 1964 they were producing over a quarter of UK’s teddy bear exports. Denys Fisher Toys took over the company in 1968 and closed down operations in 1976.

Ms Pike added: “Some of our staff who grew up in this corner of Abergavenny remember the Wendy Boston factory well. The codes now enable residents and visitors to access the story of this remarkable business as they pass the factory site.”

The site is one of 45 places in Wales where the public can scan HistoryPoints codes to discover stories relating to people, businesses, institutions and objects which moved here in the Second World War.

For more information on HistoryPoints, visit their website at http://historypoints.org/index.php?page=site-of-teddy-bear-factory-abergavenny.