Beggars Bush: A Perambulation through the Disciplines of History, Geography, Archaeology, Literature, Philology, Natural History, Botany, Biography & Beggary

Margam, Glamorgan Beggars Bush 1799

Thanks to Sylvia Robbins for drawing my attention to the very clear place name on the Yates map of Glamorgan (1799). The 1885 OS Survey which shows it at the junction of what are now the B4238 Water Street and A48 roads, east of the M4 to the south of Margam Country Park. It is shown directly above the word Smithy, by some buildings the western side of the B4238 road. It is not shown on the 1877 1:2,500 map. The name is still in use and shown on modern maps.

Thomas Gray wrote, probably about the same site:

“At Cwrt-y-defaid is a bridge over the mill-race stream called Pont-yr-Offeiriad, the Priest’s Bridge. On the opposite side of the road from the Mill at Cwrt-y-defaid is a mound called Beggar’s Bush- — why so named I could never find out, unless the beggars going from the Abbey in old days rested there to enjoy the food given them at the Abbey ; or, I think it still more probable, the mendicant friars, who were not regarded with friendly eyes by the Monastic Orders, may have used the knoll as a resting-place, preaching from it and begging from the passers-by : hence the name, “Beggars’ Bush”. The high road passed close to the Abbey in those days; it was diverted several years ago from the Abbey and straightened.”

Neither of these explanations is likely; there is no record of the name here before the Dissolution and only one record nationally.

OS Reference

SS 805 855

Further Reading

Thomas Gray, Esq., V.D., J.P., M.Inst.C.E. ‘Notes on the Granges of Margam Abbey. Part II, Journal of the British Archaeological Association NS Vol 11  1905, p.11 (p.28)


Mansel Jones

Sylvia Robbins

Posted: April 17th, 2012 | Filed under: Places | Tags: , | 1 Comment »

One Comment on “Margam, Glamorgan Beggars Bush 1799”

  1. 1: sylvia robbins said at 9:45 am on March 5th, 2014:

    Yates map 1799 shows Beggars Bush. Somone has posted it on Port Talbot Old and New facebook.

Leave a Reply