New Book: The Elan Valley Clearance by David Lewis Brown
This new book by David Lewis Brown is available at Radnorshire Society and Visitor Centre.
The Fate of the People and Places Flooded
by the 1892 Elan Valley Reservoir Scheme
The Elan Valley dams have stood for more than a century, but what
happened to the 298 men, women and children who lived there
before the valleys were flooded?
Most were shepherds and farmers, living in a little-known and
inaccessible part of Mid Wales. But then, in the 1890s, the two
valleys were identified as a water source for the rapidly-expanding
city of Birmingham, some 70 miles to the east. In far-off council
chambers and the Houses of Parliament the fate of the valleys was
The 1892 Water Act was passed, over 45,000 acres of land was
acquired and the process of clearing the valleys began.
With five maps and more than 100 images (including previously
unseen Victorian survey plans and contemporary photographs) this
book describes the valleys as they were, the political machinations,
the building of the dams, and traces for the first time what became
of the people and places of the Elan and Claerwen valleys.
David Lewis Brown has known, and been fascinated by, the Elan
Valley since childhood. His ancestry is deeply rooted in the area, and
a number of his relatives worked on the dams. This book is the result
of years of careful research into the Elan Valley Scheme and the
people it affected.