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     AND HIS

    This little volume was put
  together by the Merthyr Tydfil
   Exciting Writing Squad, with
 the help of poet Francesca Kay.

     The contributors were :
 Bethan England, David Harris,
  Elliot Morgan, Alex Thomas,
  Jack Manuel, Chenise Payne,
  Aimee Green, Erin Osborne,
 Carys Urmston, Katie Roberts,
Seana-Lee Morris, Caitlin Tasker,
 Peter Llewellyn, Chris Mansell,
Samuel Roper and Michael Jones.
This pocket sized volume celebrates Richard
Trevithick, an extra ordinary man with astonish-
ing ideas! A man, who against all the odds, creat-
ed the very first steam engine, right here in
Merthyr Tydful! The Penydarren Locomotive
was an innovation of a machine with incredible
speed, or so it seemed back then. A bet of 500
guineas and a breathtaking ride later, Trevithick
had proved he could do it! What an astonishing
inventor from the turbulent age of the Industrial
The Exciting Writing Squad have worked very
hard to bring you this entertaining book! They
have done lots of research. So we hope you enjoy

In the early 1700s Merthyr Tydfil was a rural
dream. Lush green mountains and peace and
quiet. The people were farmers who lived a quiet

life, herding cattle and tending the land.
By 1804, Merthyr had changed. For better or
worse? Let’s look at the facts. On the one hand
Merthyr had more business, money, industry,
invention, and a place in the world. On the other
hand, it was noisy, filthy, with polluted air, and
the workers lived in pretty grim conditions,
although the bosses were living in luxury.

It was into this world that we place Richard
Trevithick and his locomotive.
  Will the steam choke you with excitement?
    Does the locomotive knock you over?

           A report from Daily Prophet

Yesterday, a self running steam powered locomo-
tive made the first ever journey, carrying 10 tons
of iron, plus around 70 people, from Penydarren
to Abercynon.

Richard Crawshay and Samuel Homfray made a
bet for 500 guineas, Mr Crawshay saying that the
locomotive wouldn’t move. However he is now
500 guineas poorer!

A young boy who travelled on the journey com-
mented “We was wooshin’ past! Me vision went
all funny! I nearly fell off with excitement!”

So, will this open new doors? Or will the door to
success be slammed in Richard Trevithick’s face?
Will this locomotive go far, or stall half way? This
reporter hopes not.

                             More news next week

Yesterday a man named Richard Trevithick made a
miracle happen. He made a steam locomotive that
moved itself on a track, on a journey of 9 miles. It
is the first time someone has made such an engine.
This has left everyone in Merthyr Tydfil astonished.

Mr Samuel Homfray, the ironmaster, had made a bet
with doubting Mr Crawshay that Richard Trevithick
would complete the journey.       The bet, for 500
guineas, has not yet been paid, and Mr Crawshay is
very angry that he has lost so much money.

Mr Trevithick said a few words to the crowd, “I am
glad that I have made this happen. It will definitely
catch on, and is a useful invention”.

We look forward to seeing some more inventions
from Mr Trevithick

On 21st February the first locomotive that could trav-
el on an unaided journey was revealed to Merthyr.
The man who was thought too crazy yesterday showed
everyone that his idea worked. Richard Trevithick’s
locomotive, which is steam powered, travelled nine
miles, and it only took four hours, which is astonish-
ingly quick. It travelled from Penydarren to

Mr Samuel Homfray, who is Trevithick’s boss, had
made a bet with Mr Crawshay for 500 guineas. Mr
Homfray was confident that Trevithick's invention
would work. On the other hand, Mr Crawshay thought
it was impossible, and he has now lost his money.

I spoke to Miss Vera Jones, who commented “I was
extremely worried and scared when I saw this train,
and I and several other ladies fainted”.

I also spoke to Mr Homfray, who commented, “I am
extremely happy with the progress that this machine
has made. When it took off I was astonished!”

Most people thought that Mr Trevithick would never
succeed, but he has proved the doubters wrong. Mr
Trevithick obviously has a lot of potential!

The steam train began in 1804,
Evolution was knocking at the door,
Dick Trevithick was considered a mad man,
But can he do it? Yes he can!

He created a train
Which moved rather fast,
A whole five miles an hour.,
But would it last?

It made the journey
Right to the end,
The rails were cracking,
Look out my good friend!

Dick Trevithick,
Can he fix it?
Dick Trevithick,
Yes, he can!

Richard Trevithick’s locomotive is better
than horses, better than walking, and
you could have had the ride of your life!!


Will Homfray win his money?
The train goes faster down the track,
The men hold on tightly.


Trevithick passes on his locomotive,
Clever Homfray wins his 500 guineas bet,
Everybody gives a big cheer.
This is a sad story,
Of a man with lost glory,
Hired by Homfray,
To find a new way,
Of riding to and from the quarry.

He first lived in Cornwall,
They thought he’d gone AWOL,
He’d moved to Merthyr,
Which was step further,
To creating an invention for all.

He worked night and day,
For hardly any pay,
And made his train,
With his mighty brain,
And made his train so it wouldn’t stay.

He won a bet,
And then he set
Back to Cornwall in pain,
Without any gain,
And died alone with no money to accept.

Steam blocking out the sky,
The train slowly trundles down the track,
People wondering where they are.

Trevithick watches his creation work,
As children look in admiration and awe,
The engine slowly moves past.

Spectators running away in fright,
As the noisy machine starts to work,
They can’t believe their eyes!

Many thought Trevithick was mad,
But today trains are part of life,
Hooray for the incredible Trevithick!

In 1804 the great locomotive ran,
Pumping and rolling as fast as it can,
Made by the Great Trevithick,
He was absolutely terrific!
Richard was just one great man.
Homfray made a bet with Crawshay,
He said ‘Trevithick will do this one day”,
500 guineas was the bet,
Crawshay doubted, but yet...
Trevithick’s plan worked, hip hip hooray!


On Dowlais Top I rule all day,
I am the one who gives out pay,
If men don’t work hard with the iron,
I’ll send them home, calling and crying,
Sometimes I find it really funny,
They work hard, I get the money,
They all work hard to earn their keep,
And they all get it, at the end of the week,
Some are good, some haven’t the knack,
The bad ones quickly get the sack,
The good ones can stay, honest and loyal,
I need them to sweat, work and toil.
In 1804, the impossible began,
Trevithick’s new engine down the tramway it ran,
Seventy men they all rode,
Down a 9 mile road,
Can the impossible happen? Yes, it can!


The locomotive - a massive monster,
a twisted traveller of metal and gears,
A dream come alive,
A puff of smoke ... gone,
A screaming of iron and steam,
A bad dream?
A bad nightmare?

There was a man whose
last name was Trevithick,
Richard was really terrific,
He invented a train,
That made people complain,
But their reasons weren’t really specific!
Gasp in amazement as Richard Trevithick’s
locomotive jumps into motion and pulls 70
tons of iron and 70 people at a death defying
5 miles an hour!

Relive the most fantastic moment in Merthyr

Also see the bet made between Richard
Crawshay and Samuel Homfray, and find out
whether the bet was paid, and catch a glimpse
of Richard Crawshay, the man behind the
‘Nine Mile’, a 5mph movie, is the latest from 19th
Century Fox, all about Richard Trevithick’s
inspiring invention. We’ll take you back to the
time of the Penydarren and show the great death
defying 9 mile journey from the Ironworks to the
Merthyr Canal. ‘Nine Mile’ stars The Rock, and
Sean Connery.

 ***** This is high octane action packed movie making
   ***** Even faster than ‘The Fast and the Furious”

                    Directed by Sigourney Weaver
From the people who brought you
“Benjamin Franklin, a static story”,
comes a new (by that we mean 19th
century) tale of an inventor. An inven-
tor who creates a machine that revolu-
tionises the industrial revolution.

Set in the heat of the Merthyr industri-
al era, a young Cornish man tries to
make it in the industrial world. With
500 guineas over his head, he must
create the train, prove his enemies
wrong and win the prize of his dreams.

With an all star cast including Robbie
Coltrane as William Crawshay, this is a
19th Century Fox Production.

Dear Mother,

Today I witnessed a self moving locomotive, the
invention of Richard Trevithick. I myself do not
think it will be successful.

I’ve lost a bet with Samuel Homfray for 500
guineas, but my wife is tight with money, so I’m
not going to give it to him.

Your loving son Crawshay.

My Dearest Mother,

It is such a pity that you weren’t here to see the first ever
moving locomotive. The noise and speed were outra-
geous, but it was still an incredible sight!

Many of the men jumped on, but I am a lady, and would
not dream of doing such a thing! However, you know I
always talk about the future, and I think this is the future!
Mr Trevithick is indeed a talented engineer. He must
have a vivid imagination, thinking of such a thing. I cer-
tainly wouldn’t have!

I hope to speak to you soon,
                          Your loving daughter, Isabelle.

                   A LETTER HOME

Dear Mum,

The locomotive is great! It runs along an iron track like
a big monster. It roars ever so loudly. I thought I would
go deaf, but luckily I didn’t!

I wish you could have seen it.
                              Your loving daughter Emily.
I would like to invent a television you could
take things out of and smell and taste. I
think this would be cool! I would watch
cooking programmes only if they smelt
nice, but ‘A life of grime’ would be bad to

I would also like to invent a new game of
Monopoly but with real money that grew
back once you’d spent it.
I would invent a flying obedient car,
With a fold and open roof,
With a door that would open and close
when you said “Door open door close”.

A flying car with blue headlights,
Air conditioning automatically
blowing out a refreshing smell,
A radio that played your
favourite tunes all the time,
An engine that could take you as fast as you
That’s what I would invent.

I would invent a flying car that could go
a thousand miles an hour. It would run
on sweet smelling air. My car would be
better than Richard Trevithick’s train.
The steam locomotive is a big part of Welsh
History. He may not be ranked as high as Albert
Einstein or Isaac Newton, but Richard Trevithick
is ranked to with Merthyr. He’s one of our finest
and most original geniuses.

Despite Trevithick inventing the locomotive, the
idea didn’t take off until Robert Stevenson and his
locomotive called Rocket. Trevithick got nothing
from what he had done, and died in poverty back
in his native Cornwall.
I think that some people thought that R.T. was
nuts, and his invention would never work in a bil-
lion years. But it did, and it was absolutely bril-
liant! Well, that’s my opinion.

I wish we could go back in time and see it all hap-
pening. It’s very dificult to imagine the sense of
excitement and amazement when the locomotive
started to roll slowly along the rails. I don’t think
we’d like all the noise and smoke!

There were lots of amazing people inventing
things in Victorian times. Isambard Kingdom
Brunel with his ships, bridges and tunnels, and
Robert Stevenson with the locomotive called
Rocket were just two of them. And although she
didn’t invent anything, Queen Victoria was pretty
amazing too!!
            We extend our sincere
       thanks to the following people :
 Francesca Kay without whose dedication this
 booklet would not have seen the light of day.

Members of the Exciting Writing Squad involved
  for their continued dedication to the Squad.

 Rhys Lewis of Nationwide Building Society,
 Merthyr Branch for their finanacial assistance.

          Terry Victor for his Richard
         Trevithick at the launch event.

         Mr A. Lloyd of Aberfan for
     providing the front cover illustration.

         Carolyn Jacob at the Central
     Library for her never ending support.

      Last but not least, the MTCBC for
  recognising the talent of our Writing Squad
     and their continued financial support.
                                        NTY B
                                 CO U            OR


               YR T

                                                       C OU

                                                        N CIL
                                                           UD F UL
          C YN G O R

                                                      YR T




                                 REF             LM
                                        SI R O


This is a child’s version of the event
 and may not be entirely accurate
The Penydarren Locomotive
    200th Anniversary
    21st February 2004

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