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Wales Online
Wales Online
Nino Williams

Historic Clydach social club The Mond is closing after more than 100 years

The historic Mond Social Club in the Swansea Valley is to close after more than 100 years.

The club, which includes a public bar and function room, was built in 1914 as part of the Vale Clydach Refinery, more commonly known as ‘The Mond’, after the original factory owner Ludwig Mond.

Over the years, it has played a central part in the recreational life of Clydach, hosting weddings, concerts, children’s parties, and a host of other functions, including wrestling.

In addition to the public bar, its function room is able to accommodate up to 200 guests.

But its days are finally numbered, after Vale Clydach Refinery bosses announced its closure, due to a need to modernise and expand the refinery.

The nickel refinery next to the club is facing 'excellent prospects' which means the factory needs to expand (Adrian White)

In a letter to employees, operations manager at Clydach, Darren Poland, told employees the refinery was facing ‘excellent prospects’ but in order to remain ‘a benchmark in our industry’ the decision had been taken to re-purpose the Mond Club to meet the needs of the business.

The cost of repair to the canteen alone was estimated at more than £140,000.

The club will now close to the public at the end of April, although dates booked before April 30 will still be honoured.

The refinery employs approximately 193 full-time workers, and 55 full-time contractors, in addition to a number of part-time contractors, while the Mond Club has seven employees, only two of which are full-time.

Carly McClarnan, UK corporate affairs specialist at Vale, said: “With the expected growth in the nickel market presenting excellent prospects for us as a high performing refinery, there is a need to invest in modernising our business, and so with a heavy heart, we have decided to make the difficult decision to repurpose the Mond Club.

“It was a hard decision to make, but we had looked at all the options, and to ensure the longevity of the company we have taken the decision to close the club at the end of April.

“It was opened over 100 years ago by Ludwig Mond, and not many businesses would these days build a mining facility with a pub in-house.

“We have met employees to give them the news as we are a close community in Clydach, and Vale is one of the biggest employers in the area. The Mond Club is steeped in history, and we recognise this news will be viewed as an end of an era for many.

“Everyone working there will be offered recruitment assistance because we want to support those who are working at the club.

“Every single appointment will be honoured up until we close at the end of April, and we are working very closely with those who have events scheduled after this date.”

Clydach councillor Gordon Walker said the closure marked the end of an era for the village.

He added: “It is a sad state of affairs. The Mond Club has been part of the community for donkeys years, and it is a real shame to see it go”.

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