Telegraph and Postal Services

The only information that has thus far come to light regarding the telephone and postal services are contained in the following newspaper reports

“Merthyr Express” 11 April 1868   The Atlantic Telegraph    One of the first telegrams we have known as coming to Merthyr was received by a respectable inhabitant a few days ago. It was five words only and cost £6. The intelligenc it bore was a true domestic tragedy. A person in America sent money home to his wife to pay for her journey across the Atlantic, and the same day that she received the money, she had the telegram to say that her husband was dead.

“Merthyr Express” 3 October 1903   Telegraph facilities for Fochriw. With Council becoming Guarantors at a cost of approximately 10 Guineas. The resolution was passed with one dissention this being the Rev T Rees of Pontlottyn who claimed that Pontlottyn had had the inhabitants to act as Guarantors and that Fochriw should have been the same.

“Merthyr Express” 3 October 1903   Telegraph Facilities for Fochriw   Mr. J. Jones proposed that the Council  become guarantors to the General Post Office for any deficiency  which may occur by the establishment of a telegraph office at Fochriw. In doing so, he set out the inconvenience of having no telegraph office nearer than Pontlottyn, and pointed out that from a communication he had received from the post office officials, this facility would be granted provided the usual guarantee were given. The letter from the Postmaster-General further showed that it was content for the District Council to become the guarantors. Mr. Jones, therefore, strongly maintained that as the legislature had provided for municipal authorities becoming the guarantors, it was their duty, in the interest of the public, to take advantage of this provision. Mr. Joseph Morgan seconded, and also argued that it was the duty of the representatives of the public to take advantage of their powers, in order to obtain this boon for Fochriw. The clerk, at Mr. Jones's request, explained that the Council had full power to become guarantors, and read the letter of the Postmaster-General, which showed that at most it would not mean more than ten guineas, and that the more telegrams sent, the less would be the deficit. The Rev. T. Rees objected to the Council becoming guarantors. When Pontlottyn applied for a telegraph office, the people of Pontlottyn became guarantors. Why should not the folk of Fochriw do the same? Mr. Jones urged that the legislature would surely not have made a provision such as the circular disclosed, unless they meant their  public bodies to serve the public in this way. The resolution was carried, the Rev. T. Rees being the only dissentient.

9 May 1908  Daring Burglary at Fochriw Post Office   In the early hours of Friday morning, the Fochriw Post Office was broken into, and coppers and other small coins, amounting in all to about 20 shillings, were taken; also a number of postage stamps. The pantry window facing the main road was the means of access. The catch was forced completely off, and thrown away, whilst some books on the window ledge were cast outside. The glass-panelled door separating the office from the house was carefully closed. Naturally, the cash-draw was the object of attention. This was smashed, and the contents taken. Luckily, Mr. Aneurin Jones, postmaster, had, before retiring, placed all the gold, money orders, valuables, etc., in the safe. The occupants of the Post Office did not go to bed until one o'clock, and then everything seemed to be quiet. Mr. Aneurin Jones (senior), father of the postmaster, aroused the household when he discovered the break-in, whilst on his way to work in the morning. Police Sergeant Gammon, Pontlottyn, and Acting-Sergeant Stead, Deri, were soon on the scene, and arrests were made by P.S. Nicholls and P.C. Williams at Bargoed on Sunday.

“Merthyr Express” 19 October 1929   Postal Facilities   Quite a boon has been conferred on the village by the recent improved postal facilities. A delivery of letters now takes place at 7:00a.m.