Theme - People

The Blaenavon Industrial Landscape is an important place of study of the Industrial Revolution and is an ideal venue for schools studying changes in people’s daily lives in the 19th century, and the changes that happened in Wales, Britain and the wider world between 1760 and 1914 and people’s reactions to them.

The Blaenavon World Heritage Centre was established to provide a focal reference point to the area’s rich industrial legacy, telling the story of the ordinary men and women who have shaped this landscape from the earliest days of the Industrial Revolution to the present day using film, audio and graphic and interactive displays.

Before the founding of the Blaenavon Ironworks in 1787, Blaenavon was an isolated, rural area which was home to a small, scattered, Welsh-speaking community who relied largely on the land for their living. Almost overnight the area was transformed to one where the majority of its inhabitants were no longer governed by the cycles of the seasons and the vagaries of the weather but by the demands of new industry. At Blaenavon, students can explore how people’s lives were transformed by the Industrial Revolution.

The town and pattern of community at Blaenavon provides valuable evidence of the beginnings of a new kind of human experience - an industrial society – producing new patterns of settlement and land use. It is a monument to the working-class culture which emerged in the South Wales valleys and exhibits the tensions between employer and employee, the Established Church and Dissent, Welsh speakers and English speakers all of which are represented in the built heritage of the town comprising homes of workers and masters, churches, chapels, shops, public houses and Workmen’s Hall & Institute. The unusually complete survival of the landscape of work and society provide an exceptional testimony to early industrialised culture.

The information resources within the Blaenavon World Heritage Centre provide an excellent starting point and stimulus to a study on this theme. Our topic web below provides some suggestions for developing the theme of ‘People’.


Key Stage 2 Resources 


People Topic Web


People - Foundation Phase Topic Web


People - Key Stage 2 Topic Web