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LOCAL
GOVERNMENT
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confidence which they had placed in him. The figures of the poll were: Mr. D. J. Thomas, 542; Mr. W. J. Giles, 378; Mr. Evan Hopkins Jones, 97.

The Welsh Nationalists held a number of meetings at Fochriw during 1942/43 but it was not until the 1960’s that they began to make inroads in the district.

Between 1906 and 1911, Merthyr put forward proposals to include Fochriw and Bedlinog within its political jurisdiction. This was probably due to the fact that both Fochriw’s and Bedlinog’s origins owed themselves to the coal mines which were opened by the Dowlais Iron Company and strong ties existed with Dowlais. Most of the workers lived at Dowlais and, in the case of Fochriw, out of a total workforce of about 1500, only about 300 lived locally. This was fiercely resisted by the Gelligaer Distric Council as the following two newspaper reports show.

1 December 1906   Merthyrs Proposals to Annex Fochriw and Bedlinog: Gelligaer to Oppose   At a meeting of the Gelligaer District Council at Hengoed, on Wednesday, Mr. John Jones in the chair, Mr. F. T. James, clerk, who is also in member of the Merthyr Council, reported to the meeting that at the last meeting of the Merthyr Corporation, a scheme was submitted to plan for the annexation of the whole of the Bedlinog and Fochriw wards in the Gellygaer area, and the Nelson ward in the Caerphilly area, to the Merthyr Corporation district. He stated that he had opposed this plan at the recent meeting, protesting against the policy of "grab," which was based on the mineral wealth of these wards. The Council voted unanimously to oppose the scheme.

9 December 1911  Proposed Extension of Merthyr: Gellygaer Will Oppose Extension to Include Bedlinog and Fochriw   At the meeting of the Gellygaer District Council on Tuesday, the Clerk said, in reply to a question from Mr. E. Richards concerning the proposed intention of Merthyr to seek powers for extending its boundaries to embrace Bedlinog and Fochriw, that he did not know what steps the Corporation were taking at present, but as a member of the Corporation, he would oppose it as he had always done. [Hear, hear.] A response from Merthyr might take six months, but when this happened, the Parliamentary Committee would be called to decide what action was necessary. Mr. E. Richards then proposed that legal advice be taken, so that they were prepared when the time came for action. He also proposed that Mr. Gus Jones, and the Fochriw and Trelewis members be added to the Parliamentary Committee. This was agreed to, and it was decided to call a meeting of the committee for the 19th.
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