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Aber Bargoed, Caerphilly County
Aberbargoed (not to be confused with its neighbour Bargoed) is situated in the heart of Caerphilly county, South Wales. In former times it was a hub for coal, with the Bargoed Colliery opening in 1897, and by 1903 engines were working to raise the first four trams of coal. With the closure of Bargoed Colliery in 1977, the town descended into a grim state, with leftover coal waste tips and a high level of unemployment.
Thankfully these days Aberbargoed is a much quieter and peaceful place. The unemployed have gained work in larger towns such as Pontypridd, Cwmbran and Merthyr Tydfil, whilst the former tip has been made into a beautiful country park.
Bargoed Woodland Park is Caerphilly's newest country park. Walks can be taken along the Rhymney River and it's hard to believe that this quiet and natural place was once the site of the highest coal tip in Europe. Visitors can explore the fragments of old woodland that escaped the ravages of mining. The river, once trapped in a huge tunnel, is now alive with dippers, herons, kingfishers and otters.

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