The Forge Hammer Inn – Abertillery.
The Forge Hammer Inn was situated on Hill Street, Abertillery. The inn was owned by Mr William Webb, of Aberbeeg Brewery. The early censuses show it was between Middleton’s Row and Lewis James Houses, close to the Western Valley Terrace and Castle Street although since then the street names have been altered. The 1891 census stated the then landlord lived at 17 Hill Street, Abertillery.
Mr William Edwards.
The earliest landlord reported at the Forge Hammer Inn is Mr William Edwards. Mr Edwards was licensee at the Forge Hammer, Abertillery in the late 1860’s.
In 1870 Mr William Edwards transferred the license of the Forge Hammer Inn over to Mr John Tarrant.
Mr John Tarrant.
In 1870 Mr John Tarrant became the landlord at the Forge Hammer Inn, Abertillery. Mr John Tarrant was born in 1823 at Somerset, England, his wife Mrs Maria Tarrant was born in 1825 at Wiltshire, England. They lived at the Forge Hammer with their family – Masters James Henry Tarrant, born 1844 at Somerset, Joseph Tarrant, (Railway Policeman), born 1854 at Monmouthshire, William Henry Tarrant (Grandson) born in 1874 and John Tarrant (Grandson) born 1878.
Mr Edward Plummer.
By 1876 Mr Edward Plummer was the landlord at the Forge Hammer Inn, Abertillery. The following year he transferred the license to Mr Isaac Austin. Mr Plummer later became landlord at the Forge Hammer Inn.
Mr Isaac Austin.
In 1877 Mr Isaac Austin was landlord. Mr Austin was only at the Forge Hammer Inn for a short while before transferring the license over to Mr Arthur Williams.
Mr Arthur Williams.
In 1879 Mr Arthur Williams became landlord at the Forge Hammer Inn.
Mr Morgan Price.
In the early 1880’s Mr Morgan Price was licensee. Apart from the licence transfer notice in the local papers there is no other information on Mr Price.
Mr Ralph Wilson.
In 1883 Mr Ralph Wilson was licensee. Apart from the licence transfer notice and a court case brought about in February 1884 by Mr Wilson in which he was assaulted at his beerhouse as reported in the local papers, there is no other information on Mr Wilson.
Mr and Mrs Moses and Mary Adams.
In 1884 Mr and Mrs Adams became licensees at the Forge Hammer Inn, Abertillery. Mr Moses Adams senior was a colliery contractor and licensee, they lived at the inn with their children – Moses Adams junior, Lewis Adams, Edwin Adams and Bertie Adams. Mrs Mary Adams nee Lewis left her husband in 1891 after a well publicised court case and Mr Adams later moved from the inn to reside at Castle Street, Abertillery.
Mr John Williams.
In 1892 Mr John Williams was licensee at the Forge Hammer Inn, Mr Williams left the inn in 1899.
Mr William Tippins.
In 1899 Mr William Tippins was licensee at the Forge Hammer Inn, Mr Tippins was born in 1854 at Abertillery, he lived at the inn with his wife Sarah Ann Tippins nee Jones, born in 1856 at Blaina.
The Abertillery Harlequins Seconds.
In July 1900 the Abertillery Harlequins Seconds Football Team held a meeting at the Forge Hammer Inn, the South Wales Gazette reported that Mr William Tippins was their president. At the same time the Abertillery Harlequins First Team held their meetings at Wilkins Temperance Hotel, Somerset Street, Abertillery, their president was Mr William G. Wilkins, proprietor.
The Proposed Closure of the Forge Hammer Inn.
In the late 1890’s Messrs Webb’s of Aberbeeg were the owners of the Forge Hammer Inn and many other pubs in the district, they wanted to add another licenced premises to their stock and proposed to have a new hotel built on the new Alexandra Road, the main road from Abertillery to Six Bells. This hotel was to be called the Cwm Hotel, built on land owned by the Cwm Estate. When applying for planning permission the magistrates were not impressed with the monopoly they had in the industry within such a small area and issued them with an ultimatum.
The Webb Brothers had to close two of their old premises close by and forfeit those licenses in order to build a new hotel. They abided by the magistrates wishes and offered to surrender the licenses of the Forge Hammer Inn and of the Ivorites Inn on Castle Street. While the new building went ahead and the closure of the other two inns was put in motion Mr William Tippins was put in place as landlord in order to oversee the undertaking.
The Licence Surrender at Forge Hammer Inn.
In November 1902 Mr William Tippins with the backing of Messrs Webb’s, Aberbeeg stated his intention to surrender the current licence at the Forge Hammer Inn and to re-apply for a new licence at the Cwm Hotel, Alexandra Road, Abertillery. This application coincided with the Ivorites Inn licence surrender and re-application to the same new hotel.
The Closure of the Forge Hammer Inn.
In December 1902 the Forge Hammer Inn officially closed.
On Monday 23rd February 1903 Mr J. H. Jones was instructed by Messrs J. R. & T. A. Webb, Ltd of Aberbeeg to auction off fixings and furniture both the Forge Hammer and the Ivorites Inn, Abertillery. The auction was held at the new Cwm Hotel, Alexandra Road, Abertillery.