Fonds GB 0210 JOHADA - John Haydn Davies Papers

Identity area

Reference code



John Haydn Davies Papers


  • 1895, 1922-1991 (accumulated [?1922]-1991) (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

1 box, 1 vol., 12 folders, 9 envelopes

Context area

Name of creator

Biographical history

John Haydn Davies (1905-1991), musician and local historian, is best remembered as a conductor of choirs and festivals and for his distinguished contribution to Treorchy Male Choir.

He was born in Blaenycwm in the Rhondda Fawr Valley on 3 February 1905, the son of Daniel and Lucy Davies. He received his education at the local school in Blaenycwm, Tonypandy Grammar School and Caerleon Training College. Having completed his course at Caerleon he returned to Blaenycwm as a teacher, becoming headmaster in 1955. In 1960 he was appointed headmaster of Bodrinallt School in the Rhondda. He retired in 1970.

John Haydn Davies became conductor of Blaenselsig Male Choir in 1933, and conducted Blaenycwm Choral Society between 1935 and 1947. After the Second World War he was invited to become conductor of Treorchy Male Choir which, under his baton, gained a huge reputation, performing in concerts throughout Britain and winning eight first prizes at the National Eisteddfod. In 1961 he was awarded the MBE for his contribution to music. He retired as conductor in 1969 but continued as Conductor Emeritus until his death in 1991.

During his tenure as conductor he also adjudicated regularly at local, semi-nationals as well as the National Eisteddfod, and also served on the Music Committee of the Eisteddfod. He took a keen interest in the history of the Rhondda Valley and especially in the Rhondda choral music tradition. He contributed to Rhondda Past and Future, a work published in 1975 under the editorship of K. S. Hopkins. He was a prominent and active member of Blaenycwm Welsh chapel.

Archival history

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Donated by Mr Geraint Davies, Rhondda Cynon Taf, son of John Haydn Davies, November 2002.; 0200213216

Content and structure area

Scope and content

The fonds comprises papers, 1895, 1922-1991, relating mainly to Treorchy Male Choir and the history of the Rhondda.

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling

Action: All papers donated to NLW have been retained..


Accruals are not expected.

System of arrangement

Arranged according to provenance at NLW into two groups: Treorchy Male Choir and research papers; and one series: speeches and miscellaneous papers.

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Readers consulting modern papers in the National Library of Wales are required to sign the 'Modern papers - data protection' form.

Conditions governing reproduction

Usual copyright laws apply.

Language of material

  • English
  • Welsh

Script of material

Language and script notes

English, Welsh

Physical characteristics and technical requirements

Finding aids

A hard copy of this list is available at NLW.

Allied materials area

Existence and location of originals

Existence and location of copies

Related units of description

Photographs of John Haydn Davies and Blaenycwm Chapel are in NLW, Special Collections.

Related descriptions

Notes area

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Description control area

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Rules and/or conventions used

This description follows NLW guidelines based on ISAD(G) Second Edition; AACR2; and LCSH.


Level of detail

Dates of creation revision deletion

December 2002


  • English



Archivist's note

Compiled by Barbara Davies.

Archivist's note

The following sources were used in the compilation of this description: obituaries in The Independent (5 July 1991), Seren Cymru (2 August 1991) and Y Gloran (September 1991); Treorchy Male Choir 1946-1996: fifty golden years, edited by Dean Powell (1996).

Archivist's note

Accession area

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Physical storage

  • Text: John Haydn Davies Papers.