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Aberdare Boys’ Grammar School

Sporting Activities

Old School

This page describes the Aberdare County School Challenge Shield.

The Challenge Shield was presented to the school by the Llewellyn family of Bwllfa House, Cwmdare. It carries hallmarks which indicate that it was manufactured in Birmingham around 1910. The shield is one of a pair presented by the Llewellyn family: one for boys’ sports and the other for girls’ sports. In 1910 the boys and girls were both at the same building in Hirwaun Road, Trecynon. Indeed, the girls school shield carries an engraving of a large number of girls performing synchronised ‘drill’ on School Lawn in front of School House. However, when the girls moved to Plasdraw in 1913, their shield went with them.
There are 13 engraved small badges of the winning houses, from the years 1909 - 1934, fixed around the perimeter. We don’t know why there are so many missing years. Perhaps somebody out there will tell us.
It is evident that although a House system was in place before 1910, the practice of naming the Houses after heroic Welshmen followed later, at some point between 1914 and 1925. When first introduced there were initially six of these ‘named’ houses. In the 1933 Sports Day programme, the six, together with their associated colours, are listed as follows : Llewellyn (Red); Caradog (Green); Glyndwr (Yellow); Penri (White); Tudor (Black) and Dewi (Blue).
It was in his first staff meeting on becoming Headmaster in January 1937, that Mr. W.R. Williams reduced the number of Houses to 4, leaving: Dewi, Llewellyn, Penri and Tudur. Mr Williams comments in his 1938 report that this reduction ‘will improve the school games’.
The Sports Day programme for 1944, suggests that it was the W.M. Llewellyn Cup that was presented for the best performing House in Athletics. We can only presume that the presentation of this Cup took over from the Shield about the time of the Second World War.
Detail of each of the engraved badges is presented below the main photograph.
 
Challenge Shield

Aberdare County School Challenge Shield

 
b1

1909 -10
Mr. Thomas’s House

Captain

Brinley Reynolds

b2

1910 - 11
Mr. Thomas’s House

Captain

Warren Lewis

b3

1911 - 12
Mr. A. Roberts’s House

Captain

W. Oxenham

b4

1912 - 13
Mr. D.T. Davies’s House

Captain

D.S. Nicholas

b5

1913 - 14
MR. E.O. Williams’s House

Captain

W. Pontin

b6

1925 - 26
Dewi House

Captain

H.E. Davies

b7

1926 - 27
Dewi House

Captain

H.E. Davies

b8

1927 - 28
Tudur House

Captain

J.E. Robertson

b9

1928 - 29
Penri House

Captain

T.J. Barling

b10

1930 - 31
Tudur House

Captain

L.M. Rees

b11

Tudur House

1931 - 32

Captain

D.G. Parry

b12

Tudur House

1932 - 33

Captain

J. Roderick

  b13

Tudur House
1933 - 34

Captain

D.E. Davies