History and Heritage

E D Lewis


The first Headmaster of Ystalyfera County School was Arthur Blount Sully who took up the post at the opening of the school in 1896 and left in 1913. He was succeeded by Harry Rees who held the post for thirty years, from 1913 to 1943. Ben T Jones, already a veteran of the school, took over from 1943 to 1945. Then from 1945 E. D. Lewis was Headmaster.

From the book 'The First Fifty Years' by Rees John Davies, M.A. (published 1946) comes this :

Mr Ben T. Jones, M.A., was succeeded at the end of January, 1945, by the present headmaster, Mr E.D. Lewis, M.A., formerly History master at Gowerton County School. Mr Lewis is a very distinguished scholar of the University of Wales, well steeped in the history and culture of his native land.

From the South Wales Voice, Saturday December 16th 1944 comes the news that E.D. Lewis has been appointed Headmaster of Ystalyfera County School, temporary for the duration of the war:-


As we briefly reported inlast week's issue, Mr Evan D Lewis, Senior History Master at Gowerton County School, has been appointed Headmaster of Ystalyfera County School in succession to Mr Ben T Jones, who retired shortly.
Mr Lewis entered the University College, Cardiff, with a Rhondda Higher Scholarship and a Glamorgan Free Studentship. In 1930, he graduated with First Class Honours in History and was awarded the Gladstone Memorial Prize for work in Economic and History. He was also granted a research scholarship of the University, but accepted instead the Gowerton post at the age of 21.
In 1940, he was awarded the M.A. degree and the Prince Llewelyn Ap Gruffydd Memorial Prize for a thesis on 'The Economic Development of the Rhondda Valleys'. He had been a part-time lecturer in the Education Department of the University College, Swansea, and an examiner in History to the Joint Matriculation Board of the Northern Universities.
Mr Lewis has been particularly active in the Llwchwr locality as a tutor and lecturer with the W.E.A. and has taken great interest in the drama movement. He is a Welsh-speaking Welshman and lectured to various Cymmrodorion societies.
He is 35 and will start on his new duties in January.

From the South Wales Voice, Saturday 23rd December, came more information on the appointment of E.D. Lewis:-


Mr Evan D Lewis, Gorseinon, Senior History Master at Gowerton County School since 1931, was appointed temporary Headmaster of Ystalyfera County School at a meeting of the governors on Tuesday.
Mr Lewis who is 34, is a B.A. Wales, M.A. Wales, and graduated with First Class Honours History. He has conducted four sessions of evening classes and is a W.E.A. lecturer. The post is temporary for the duration for the war.
A Welsh-speaking Welshman, Mr Lewis has always taken a keen interest in social, religious, and educational matters. He commenced teaching at the age of 21.

The South Wales Voice newspaper of Saturday 25th December 1948 shows that E D Lewis was still Headmaster in 1948 when he was appoinnted to a national position:-


Mr E D Lewis MA, Headmaster of the Ystalyfera County Grammar School, has accepted an offer from the Ministry of Education to serve on the History and Economics Subject Panel of the Secondary School Examination Council of England and Wales.
The number of persons serving on these Subject Panels will be small and all will be specialists and this indicates the honour bestowed upon Mr Lewis.
Mr Lewis’ appointment is a recognition of his conscientious endeavours in the field of education; that he is well qualified for the post is evident from the fact that he has for many years been Examiner in History on the joint Matriculation Board of the Northern Universities.
These Subject Panels are the logical sequence to the termination of the old CWB and are necessary for the introduction of the new examination system for the General Certificate of Education, in 1951.
Me Lewis, who graduated when 19 years of age, has a 1st class honours degree in history and was awarded his MA with distinction.
A native of Porth Rhondda, he made his home in West Wales in the early stages of his scholastic career, serving on the staff of the Gowerton County School for many years, before succeeding Mr B T Jones MA and the late Mr Henry Rees, as headmaster of the Ystalyfera County Grammar School.