History Book Celebrates The ‘Vital Role’ of The Stiwt in Rhos

NOTE: This content is old - Published: Saturday, Oct 8th, 2016.

History lecturers have launched a new book celebrating the role of a Miners’ Institute in Rhosllanerchrugog.

Kathryn Ellis and Peter Bolton, both senior lecturers of history at Wrexham Glyndwr University, wrote ‘The Stiwt: A Mansion for Miners’, based on the theatre in Rhos which has played a vital role in the social and cultural history of the area for 90 years.

Peter, who has been teaching history at Wrexham Glyndwr University for more than a decade, said: “Similar studies exist for the Institutes of South Wales, thanks largely to the records preserved at the South Wales Miners’ Library, part of Swansea University – of which there is no equivalent in this part of Wales. This book aims to redress that balance.

“Therefore, we thought it was important to create a lasting memorial to the miners of the area and to the ordinary working class people who saved the Rhos Institute from destruction and have contributed greatly to its success as a theatre.”

The book charts the rise, near demolition and eventual resurrection of the Miners’ Institute.

Built in 1926, largely due to the contributions of local miners, the building has welcomed royalty and the political elite, but has also provided culture and entertainment for the working people of the community.

The authors launched their book at The Stiwt’s 90th anniversary celebrations at the end of September which included performances by the famous choirs of Rhos, as well as the internationally acclaimed pianist Llyr Williams.

Kathryn, who was born and bred in Rhos and specialises in the socio-cultural history of the region, said: “We were delighted to play a part in the 90th anniversary celebrations and the packed theatre was testament to the Stiwt’s ongoing popularity and importance.

“The book sold out on the night but more copies will be available shortly.

“We’ve both enjoyed researching this project and we’re glad there is now a written record of this fascinating building whose very survival was once at stake.”

The lecturers and authors of this book bring together a wide range of archival evidence and photographs to trace the birth, decline and eventual resurrection of a building which continues to support the cultural and communal life of Rhos.

Kathryn appeared on S4C’s Heno last week to promote the book and the theatre.

The book will be available to purchase for £10.99 from The Stiwt, Rhos Library, local bookshops and online via Amazon. Alternatively you can contact the authors directly at ellisk@glyndwr.ac.uk.

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