Castleton Baptist Church

St. Mellons Road, Marshfield, Cardiff, CF3 2TX


By David Bateman

A Castle at Wentloog is mentioned in the Norman Pipe Rolls of 1184, these pipe rolls describe rolled up parchments on which records were originally written and stored, and are recorded as Castell Behan / Remmi or Remni (1184), the details were researched by John Leland (1503-1552) a historian, described as the father of local history.
It would have been a timber built Castle.
All that remains today are the earthwork of the site.
The earthwork measures 25 M across its base, 12M across the top and 5M high.
The rounded wooden castle structure would have been built on the raised earthwork, called a Motte, and usually with an enclosed courtyard.
History shows that there was a small Norman encampment in that area (1088) and the Normans used it to control the local people in the Wentloog area.
It is feasible that this castle (Castleton) was indeed part of a Norman fort and the stream formed part of the encampment providing an ideal place for a Baptism across the road from the Chapel with converts and congregation walking to the stream.
The pioneer names in Baptist / Non-conformist history within the locality as early as 1644 include three or four men who were not Baptists.
The suggestion is that they were Quakers, men such as Henry Walters, Watkins Jones and Thomas Quarrel. Henry Walters is reported to have built up his own house fellowship and in 1648 he was made preacher of a district extending from Bedwas and Machen to Aberbeeg.
Its reported that Watkin Jones from Bedwas used his baptism pool as a watering station for his cattle! Thomas Quarrell joined John Powell in serving what was a unique gathered church at Marshfield House in 1669; this seems to be the earliest date for the beginning of Baptist worship at Castleton.
The two men spread the gospel to the surrounding areas, including St Melons (llaneurwg), Llanederyn, Lisvane, Rudy and Bedwas.
Pastor Joshua Jones from the Pontypool and Abergavenny area had two missionary preachers in his team, one of them William Meredith was reported to be a good walker, referred to as nimble footed, he had to be because he walked the 20 mile journey to preach at Castleton at midday and then preach again somewhere else in the afternoon, and then walk back to Llanwenarth the same day.
Speakers from Hanged Chapel also came to Castleton to lead worship at house gatherings. The earliest record of our present day house groups!
Walter Williams an independent preacher held meetings in 1692 at the home of a Jane Reynolds from Marshfield. The records for 1700 or earlier show that non conformist preachers both Baptist and Presperterians preached on a regular basis at Castleton gathered meeting, or Casbach as the local Welsh speaking locals called it.
The Baptist history of Monmouth shire notes that the squire of Marshfield, who lived in Marshfield House, taught his private army about Christianity.
After 1710 it was Baptist preachers that lead services at these gathered or settled meetings.
Documents show that in 1713 the early Church at Castleton was established.
The first converts were baptisms at Castleton in 1713. The baptisms were conducted in a stream near the Wentloog Castle (Castleton) called mill stream (which became known as Mill Road).
The 1851 Religious census refers to the Mill as being in that area.
Converts were received into membership at Llanwenarth Baptist Church near Abergavenny and there were a number of travelling mission preachers, namely William Meredith from Llanwenarth Baptist Church.
On the Wentloog level it would be difficult to overstate the importance of Castleton Baptist Church in the Parish of Marshfield and its history can be traced from two sources: A History of Castleton Baptists which was produced to mark the centenary of the Church in 1923 and supplementing this, a History of the Baptist Church at Bassaleg, Monmouthshire, translated from a Welsh text of 1850 by Rev. Hugh Walker in 1929.
You can also picture these earlier Baptist men travelling on horseback and arriving at the home of Thomas Anthony of Casbach House, Castleton 1700.
He was a travelling Taylor and a generous man, freely opening up his house for worship and meetings to men such as Thomas Llewellyn and other preachers from LLanwenarth, regularly visiting Castleton and Tydu in 1705 to preach and Castleton members were considered a branch of Llanwenarth Baptists.
Thomas Llewelyn of Llanwernarth was a founder of the Welsh Baptist Association and is reported to have ridden by horse to North Wales to ensure his church had a vote in the union.
Its recorded that a non-conformist meeting was being held in Castleton in 1715 with an average attendance of 70 folk.
Laanwenarth founded 12 daughter churches throughout Gwent, and player a major part in building Baptist witness throughout Wales.
The Lord’s supper 1729-1738 was delivered by preachers, Miles Harry from Pontypool, Roger David from Llanwenarth and Morgan Griffiths from Hengoed.
Many lives were won for the Lord at this time, but to travel to Llanwenarth particularly during winter proved to be impossible. In about 1726 the three men above agreed to break bread at Casbach in turn every month.
The meetings at Castleton / Marshfield attracted many people travelling from a radius of 20 miles to the gathered group for Christian worship. Eventually the entire group of Baptist leaders ranging between St Mellons in the west to Caerleon in the east decided to build a central meeting house within the locality.
In 1742 it was decided by these Baptist leaders to build a Chapel at Tydu (Black House) in Rogerstone and it would be called Bethesda (The place of mercy). This would become the central meeting house with the membership at Bethesda totaling about 70 people from the local area and Castleton who transferred their membership from Llanwenarth.
The Baptists of Castleton travelled to Bethesda for the morning service and returned for the evening service at Castleton. I can imagine that the roads were poor and it took determination to complete the journey on a regular basis.
The villages of Castleton and Bassaleg were designated as sub-centers for Bethesda and were not considered as Churches for another 70 years. But the folk at Castleton continued to worship at gathered meetings in farm houses and people’s homes. In 1756 the Rev Evan David from Llangloffan a small village 11 miles from St David’s in West Wales lead a small team of evangelists who went out before him to various locations such as Caerleon, Machen, Lisvane Risca, and Ararat, Cardiff. Their brief was to encourage growth of the gospel and win lives for the Lord.
Pastor David looked after Castleton himself, and he proved to be popular with people and very much at home with country folk. Unfortunately he began to suffer from failing eyesight and he became blind toward the end of his ministry. He was joined by James Edmunds and he continued to direct a network of preaching centers or gathered meetings at Castleton and Marshfield.
Although Castleton was a daughter church of Bethesda in Rogerstone, in that the church was incorporated, this meant that its membership was instructed by leaders from Bethesda, also Castleton was really a preaching out station from Llanwenarth Baptist Church (established in 1652) which is two miles from Abergavenny on the banks of the river Usk.
Many visiting preachers came from Llanwenarth to Castleton and Marshfield and lead meetings at gathered meetings. It is reported that converts were baptized in a "reen" - a derivation of the Welsh word Rhewin meaning ditch, near the Gout Farm which is now an 18 hole golf course.
Converts were registered on the books of Llanwenarth. Timothy Lewis was sent by Llanwenarth Baptist Chapel to look after things at Castleton.
Records show that there were four traders and 8 farmers who are registered in the 1715 survey. These could have been the first deacons or leaders of Castleton. The Lords supper was delivered by preachers from Llanwenarth, Hengoed and Pengam.
In 1785 a young man John Heir from Llangoffan Pembrokeshire, from the same church as Pastor Evan David, was studying at Bristol College and he became an important figure in the history of Castleton Baptist Church.
His association with Castleton was an unusual and strange appointment. He was returning home on the ferry from Bristol to Newport, a female member of Bethesda Mrs Blanche Williams was also on the ferry and they began to talk. The result was that he was invited to come to Bethesda and stay at her home and lead an occasional service.
He agreed and then became the pastor at Bethesda. He was a preacher and shop keeper and had a business in Castleton.
The link between Castleton, Bethesda and his business resulted in him leading services at house gatherings. The revival meetings of 1780-86 inspired John Hiers to continue to develop cottage / gathered meetings further at Castleton. In particular at the large home of Benjamin Thomas of Castleton, whose wife was sister to the then Baptist statesman Dr Thomas Llewellyn who became the founder of The Baptist Union.
The Francis family from Tyn-y-pwll owned a small farm was also used for these gatherings. John Heir shared his duties with Pastor Evan David. Pastor Evan David died in 1788. John Heir suffered from ill health toward the end of his ministry and was forced to give up his business at Castleton. He had to be carried into the pulpit, where he continued to show his love of the Lord in the same way as when he started out in his ministry.
The first proper Chapel Building in Casbach was erected in 1804 in place of demolished cottages near the bus shelter, and where the old graveyard is now situated at Castleton, called Salem Particular Baptist Chapel (Salem being an Hebrew word meaning peace).
The Church at Castleton as we know it was called New Salem.
However, the Baptists would still be members at Bethesda and there was no separate independent church until 1823. We have no details of the structure of the first church although it must have been large enough to hold the growing numbers of gathered meetings which were up to 70 people.
The Chapel was extended in 1826, but was not large enough to hold meetings for the increasing numbers of people, and so mid week meetings continued ti be held in farm houses and homes.
In 1823 the deacons at Casbach invited a 21 year old preacher from Llanrwyst a village on the edge of the Snowdonia National Park, Caernarvonshire. Rev Evan Jones, his Bardic title being Gwrst (confessor) as he was an established prominent poet, had presumably been involved with the Welsh National Eisteddfod movement.
He left Carnarvon and came to South Wales amd was an established preacher before he was 25. He came to Casbach Chapel, and St Brides Chapel, and also gathered meetings at Coedkernew, St Melons, and Peterstone. Unfortunately after his first ministry of 33 years at Castleton and the extensive travelling between all his flock to preach the word of God, in all weather conditions, he died at 65 in 1855 from acute Asthma. The Rev Evan Jones preached powerfully during his time at Castleton, and it is reported that his delivery swept through congregations like a wind! The chapel was enlarged in 1826 but was still not large enough for the growing congregation, mid week services still being held in farmhouses and homes.
Two members entered the ministry during Pastor Evan Jones’ time at Castleton; John Williams went to Aberystwyth Bible College and eventually became a minister at Nash Baptist Chapel Newport. E P Williams went to New College, Pontypool, and became the first minister at Rehoboth Baptist Chapel at St Brides in 1844.
In 1840 there were 190 members at Castleton with a Sunday school of 140 children and 12 Teachers.
An Association letter of 1856 records the membership as 206 and a Sunday school of 286 with 45 teachers.
Castleton lost 37 members to St. Mellons, the church there being established in 1841, and 27 to St Brides.
More would soon move to the new chapel at Peterstone which began its life in 1865. Between 1856 and 1863 there were 91 baptisms at Castleton and 160 restorations. Pastor Jones was keen to ensure that the young people of the Sunday school knew about scripture. but his methods were mechanical and stressed repetition rather than understanding; it’s recorded that during a year the children learned.
100 Chapters containing 2,300 verses 115 Psalms containing 482 verses 1,400 Single Verses!
Its good things have changed!
The Baptist association meeting at Castleton 1816 endorsed this need to set up pastor fellowships and mission urging churches to set up societies “to extend Christs cause.” to the most needy.
Money would be provided from subscribers. Pastor Jones of Castleton raised 16 pound in one year. This was a significant amount and was used to support these travelling evangelists.
One such evangelist, Marmaduke Jones, thought nothing of walking 15 miles and preaching 4 times on a Sunday. He completed about 1000 miles a year and preached over a 10 year period.
There was no pastor at Casbach between 1855 and 1862, a period of 7 years, yet there were 91 baptisms during that time.
The original Chapel was demolished in the 1870’s, the site then became the burial ground for the New Chapel. It was then that the New Salem Chapel as we know it was built between 1857 and 1859. It cost 2000 pounds to build, a year before the revival of 1859. It was built by R G Thomas Architect and Structural Engineer and Surveyor from Commercial Street, Newport.
The building materials were transported from Machen Quarry by local farmers and people using whatever means they had to provide the materials to construct the building.
The colors were described as romantic and a constructive collaboration of pink sandstone, yellow glazed, bright blue and brown brick. Indeed eye catching for its time with a wheel window as a central feature denoting the Agricultural Community.
Research stated that Castleton was unexpectedly elegant in particular the pulpit area and it attracted much attention seeing it was a rural chapel!
The funds raised would be given to the costs incurred in building the chapel at Castleton 700 pounds had already been donated by the religious community.
The Davies family from Bryn Ivor Hall, were Baptist supporters and they entertained Charles Spurgeon at their home. A covered stand was built and at 10 o’clock Spurgen began to speak, he began with a prayer and the congregation sang a hymn to the tune of the Old Hundred, after which he read the 28th chapter of Matthew in its entirety.
It is said that you could hear a pin drop.
A Welsh hymn followed, announced by Rev Davies from Haverford West, then Spurgen began to preach and preach he did. His sermon covered two themes, "The Risen Lord" in the morning session and in the afternoon: "The Lamb of God". It is recorded that between 5000 and 7000 people attended the open air meeting which were held at Pen-y-Cae (top of the field) near Holly House at the top of Bakery Lane.
The Monmouthshire Merlin Newspaper dated July 23 1869 records that a steam train of about 20 carriages left Newport station and arrived at Marshfield Station, full of the faithful on the way to hear the great man.
The immense party had to walk through Castleton and to the field where Spurgeon was preaching. Along Marshfield road on the way to Castleton there were feeding stations with local residence providing refreshments for the vast crowds.
It was the biggest Non-Conformist service ever held in South Monmouthshire.
I am sure our current ladies and their catering skills, would have been up to that challenge!

There is some interesting data from the 1851 Religious census Church and chapel data from the Religious census of 1851: a Calendar of the returns relating to Wales, Vol 1, South Wales. Ed. by I.G Jones, & D. Williams. UWP,Cardiff, 1976. The names given towards the end of each entry are those of the informants.Check with Gwent RO to see what extant records are held, and possible names of chapels/churches established after 1851. Marshfield Parish; Statistics; Area 1270 acres; Population; 271 males, 255 females, total 526 Marshfield Parish Church Attendance; Morning 26 + 9 scholars, Welsh and English alternately, by the curate Samuel Evans.   Salem Particular Baptist Erected 1807 Attendance: Morning 350 + 90 scholars, Evening 640 + 56 scholars, John Davies, Secretary, Castleton Sion Calvinistic Methodist Erected 1836 Attendance: Morning 18 + 15 scholars, Evening 50 + 12 scholars, Edward Cosslett, Steward, Castleton Loft near The Mill, Castleton, Wesleyan Building erected before 1800 Attendance: (not used exclusively as a place of worship) Morning 24, Afternoon 20, Evening 60 Thomas Maule, Steward, near the coach and horses, Castleton In 1851 the Baptists were the largest denomination in Monmouthshire, the Congregationalists in Glamorgan, Carmarthenshire and Breconshire, the Established Church in Pembrokeshire, Radnorshire, Montgomeryshire and Flintshire, and the Calvinistic Methodists in the five other counties.
In 1816 at a Baptist meeting held at Castleton and it was decided to build the first Welsh language Chapel in Newport.
Charles Street was the nominated site, supported financially by local philanthropist John Williams - a local taylor.
The new minister installed at Castleton in 1862 was Rev Robert Lloyd of Casbach, a native of Moelfre, Denbighshire. He was a traditional Preacher delivering his sermons full of Calvinistic vigor and flare and he had a fluent grasp and use of the English Language which was delivered with a golden voice. He became president of the Baptist Union in 1883 and he stayed at Casbach for 36 years which ended in 1895.
It is reported that there were 60 fewer members than when he began!
He was responsible for and supervised the transfer from the use of Welsh into English. Mr Edgar Spooner in his hand-written memoires, wrote that as a small boy was present at one of the last cottage meetings that it was conducted totally in Welsh, and that all the folk understood and spoke Welsh.
The Rev Lloyd left for a post at Llandaff Road Baptist Church Cardiff, and during his time at Castleton he enrolled 471 new members, 355 were baptized in an enclosed baptistery in the Chapel, but in Peterstone and St Brides it was performed in a nearby reen.
Many local men had moved away to work on the Great Western Railways, some went to work at the docks in Cardiff, and the void was taken up by English speaking men and families from Bristol and Magor.
This obvious need to introduce more English speaking into the community was a clear catalyst for the movement from Welsh into English. The Rev Lloyd is buried in the old church graveyard in Castleton.
John Bevan of Post Gwyn farm, 1886 (Grandfather of Lawson Bevan), described as the Grand Old Man of Casbach, was given the responsibility for cottage meetings and to develop a Sunday School in his home for the folk of Marshfield and Blacktown districts.
During that time a Band of Hope was also set up (and its members would sign the Pledge "I promise by Gods help to abstain from all intoxicating liquors and beverages").
Each Autumn John Bevan was Invited to conduct prayer, song and teaching in the cottages. He had a good voice and he used a tuning fork to control the pitch of the singing. He always read out the lines of bible verses slowly, but when he prayed it was said that you could feel the presence of the living Christ, and would not dare to whisper.
Before he became blind, he was keen to give Welsh lessons, and it is reported that he always showed patience and courtesy to English families who came to live in the area.
The Sunday School was a success, and it was decided to build the Blacktown Sunday School building in 1886 which seated 100 people. This "out-building"/smaller schoolrooms/additional meeting place was a feature of Baptists throughout Monmouthshire toward the end of the nineteenth century.
Castleton's out building is now called Gateway, the name being derived from the Old Testament book of Deuteronomy "may this be the gateway to Heaven to all who enter therein".
Mr Henry (Hendry) Coslett who was reluctant to pray in English was given permission to teach the young men and boys at Blacktown to read the Welsh Bible.
Toward the end of the 19th century, Pastor Evan Jones from Casbach took services in peoples homes in Peterstone, being that they already had a Sabbath School in the loft over a local thatched roof tavern The Six Bells close to the Parish church.
The Baptist leaders decided that they would hold services in the schoolroom.
Deacons David Baker from Court Farm and Daniel Jones from St Brides were the authorized representatives of Castleton Baptist Church.
The services began on August 19 1860 and subscriptions were collected to pay for the visiting preachers. One report said that there was a spirit of refreshment and great joy!
This was a time of language transition from Welsh into English and keeping with such, within the cottage and chapel Sabbath School, and finally in the Pulpit, messages were delivered in English.
People realized that it was the people that mattered the most and not the language of delivered and worship.
In 1862 it is recorded that Castleton tried out a mixture of sacred and secular songs, in two languages, this bilingual approach was to try and satisfy both Welsh and English speakers.
Chapels realized that it was better financially to use the language of the people!
The transition from Welsh to English was proving to be a problem. There was a financial aspect to this as it was seen that when chapels turned to worship in English, it could double its hearers and its offerings maintaining its paid ministry.
Following preachers at Casbach, the Rev H J Harris (1900-1902) and G H Bebb (1911-1921) were master preachers within the delivery of sermons through the English language.
The Welsh language continued although in decline and lasted for another 20 years, before the Welsh Tradition ended.
The tradition of choral singing has always been a feature at Castleton Baptist Church, and the choir of 1890-1909 was indeed special because in 1895 it performed at Crystal Palace in London, conducted by Mr Daniel Baker who farmed at Mardyr Farm. The choir also won numerous prizes at Eistedfordii throughout Wales.
The chapels were a source of great joy for many folk, and it's reported that the Christian elders at Castleton projected that "God was real!" and that "Jesus Christ a living personage!". That’s a challenge for us all at Gateway today.
The Castleton choir was rather special especially between 1890 and 1908.
In 1895 as well as performing at London the choir won prizes throughout Wales.
In the Monmouthshire Merlin Newspaper there is a report of a concert held at St. Brides Baptist Chapel on Wednesday, 13th February, 1884 and "there were recitations as well as choruses from the choir conducted by Mr. Daniel Baker. Much credit is due to Miss Williams, Miss Phillips, Miss Rees and Miss Baker who sang and played several solos. Trios and quartets were sung and a most enjoyable evening was spent".
Mr.Baker farmed the Mardyr Farm and all his seven children were educated entirely by himself at his home. All achieved successful positions in life.
The Sabbath was an important day in most of the farms and many cottages where the day started with family prayers and only essential work was allowed between attendance at services and Sunday School.
High standards in learning, reciting, playing and singing were encouraged and monitored by the Newport Sunday Schools Union which held regular examinations in scripture knowledge, as well as concerts at the Temperance Hall.
An extraordinary contribution was made to the cause of education in Peterstone by the daughter of a deacon at Castleton Baptist chapel, namely Miss Lilian Harris.
As soon as she completed her professional training at Hereford Teachers College after the First World War she was appointed to the post of Mistress of Peterstone School and there she remained until she retired forty years later in the 1960's, loved and respected by generations of pupils.
For most of the time she was a familiar figure in the district, riding her cycle from her home in Castleton to take charge of her dozen or so children whose ages until 1946 would range from five to fourteen.
In in 1902 a Manse was built on Marshfield Road, the total cost for the build was £718, 9 shillings and 5 pence.
The builders were local; Mr Harris and Fursey of Fernleigh, Castleton.
David Pretty was used for haulage of materials and Mr E Coslette of Castleton completed the ironwork for the roof, gates, rain shutes and conservatory.
A hand pumped pipe organ was installed at Castleton in 1904, followed by electricity and coal fired heating in 1924.
The building was in poor state of maintenance at this time, and a severe gale in 1927 resulted in severe damage to the building.
However, because of the severe social depression of that time the repair work was delayed until 1938, when a complete renovation was completed.
In 1964 additional work was completed including a new roof and internal decoration featuring a stained glass window called Dawn on Easter Day - fitted in memory of Mrs Kelly who played the organ at the church for 33 years.
In the early days Eisteddfods were an annual event in the life of the Church. They included song and recitation with many people in the locality and church members involved in these events.
Whitsun was always a time of great celebration within the life of the fellowship with Whitsun sea and races organized at Walk Farm. Sunday School trips to St Brides travelling by horse-drawn-carts was a time of great excitement for the church - this was extended in later years with trips to Barry Island by train and motor vehicle, and was established as an annual event in the life of the church.
The Church and Sunday School Anniversary Services were also an important time for celebration in the Church calendar, with guest speakers leading Anniversary services and children and young people taking an active part in these special times in the life of the fellowship.
The following highlight some generally interesting facts about Marshfield and its ongoing relationship with the Church at Castleton., also an indication of the residence in the Castleton area.
MARSHFIELD was originally known by the Welsh speaking residence as Mairyn, which is a corruption of Ynys Mair or Saint Marys Island. so called by the rising on which St Marys church was built and was surrounded by water from the river Ebbw. Gradually St Marys island became Marys Field and then Marshfield.
Marshfield is a parish on the Cardiff and Newport road with a station (in the parish of Peterstone), 1¼ miles south-east from the village on the Great Western (South Wales) railway, 6½ miles south-east from Cardiff, 1½ miles from the Bristol Channel, 150 miles from London and 5½ south-west from Newport, in the Southern division of the county.
The parish has two hamlets now merged into one, Castleton in the north and Blacktown in the south.
The name Blacktown is a mystery, although it is believed to be associated with the flood of 1606, and that the people drowned are buried in the area.
The land in Blacktown is well known for the reins that drain the land and subdivide the area, their existence is thought to date back to the middle ages.
The parish is intersected by the rivers Usk, the Ebbw and the Rumney. The Usk is navigable as far as the ancient city of Caerleon.
The church of St. Mary is an ancient edifice of stone in Norman and Early English styles, consisting of chancel, nave, transept, south porch and a lofty tower with spire containing 6 bells: the restoration of the church, begun in 1867, has been since continued. In 1883 the chancel floor was relaid and erected by Capt. Ferdinand Walker. An organ has been placed in a new chamber on the north side of the chancel and the south porch is entered through a fine Norman arch. The church seats over 300. The Wesleyan chapel is a stone building in the Decorated style, erected in 1854 at a cost of about £2,000, with seating for about 200 persons.
The register dates from the year 1656:
"The living is a vicarage, net yearly value £205, including 35 acres of land and residence, a gift of the Dean and Chapter of Bristol.
There is a Calvinistic Methodist chapel to seat about 150 persons.
Craig-yr-haul, the residence of Colonel Frederick John Justice.
Wentloog Castle, the residence of Sir George Ferdinand Forestier-Walker, D.L., J.P.
Bryn-Ivor Hall, the residence of John Wyndham Beynon esq.
Llwynarthan, the residence of Franklen George Evans esq. J.P.
are the principal mansions in this parish.
Lord Tredegar, who is lord of the manor, Charles Theodore Halswell, Kemeys-Tynte esq. of Cefn Mably, Cardiff, and J. H. Stubbs esq. are the principal landowners.
The soil is rich loam with a gravel subsoil.
The chief crops are wheat, barley, oats, roots and pasture.
The area is 1,271 acres of land and 2 of water; rateable value, £2,517; the population in 1891 was 564.
Following is a census from Marshfield/Castleton in 1901:
Parish Clerk, William Morgan.
Post Office, Castleton: Edward Cosslett, sub-postmaster. M.O. &, T.O., T.M.O., Express Delivery, Parcel Post, S. B. & Annuity & Insurance Office.
Letters through Cardiff, arrive at 7.10 a.m. & 3.30 p.m.; dispatched at 3 & 6 p.m. 
Post Office, Blacktown: Mrs. Fanny Jones, sub-post. mistress. Letters through Cardiff arrive 7.5 a.m., dispatched at 5.35 p.m.
Postal orders are issued here, but not paid. Castleton is the nearest money order telegraph office
Wall Letter Box at Cross roads, cleared at 5.15 p.m., week days only.
National School (mixed), erected, with masters residence, in 1861, at a cost of £1,500, for 100 children; average attendance, 70;
William Thomas, master; Miss Gwendoline Harris, mistress
Railway Station, Walter Treharne, station master
Beynon John Wyndham, Bryn Ivor hall
Bishop Rev. Arthur Edwin (Baptist)
Evans Franklen Geo., J.P., F.R.A.S., F.R.Met.Soc., Llwynarthen
Forestier-Walker Sir George Ferdinand bart. D.L., J.P. Wentloog Castle
Forestier-Walker Rowland
Harding Rev. Gower (Congregational) 
Jones Rev, Robert (curate)
Justice Col. Fredk. Jn. Craig-yr-Haul
Nichol George, The Lodge
Price, Miss
Price Thomas Jones, New Park house 
Rolls Edgar, Ty-coch
Williams Howell, The Elms
Baker David, farmer, Groes farm 
Baker Matthew, baker
Bevan Jessie, market gardener & assistant overseer
Chappell Henry, baker
Cosslett Edward, blacksmith & post office, Castleton
Edwards Stephen, butcher
Edwards William, market gardener
Evans Edmund, cooper
Evans Edward, market gardener, Lower Pentwyn
Fursey & Harris,carpenters & builders, Castleton
Gatehouse Sidney, beer retailer
Griffiths Rachel (Mrs.), shopkeeper
Harris William, mason
House John, beer retailer
Jones Ann (Miss), farmer, Reubina farm
Jones Frederick, farmer & cattle dealer, Ty Mawr
Jones Jane (Mrs.), Angel inn & grocer, Castleton
Jones James, baker
Jones, Thomas, Market gardener, Castleton
Jones, Thomas, farmer, Well House farm
Jones Thomas Davies, farmer, Court farm
Jones Watkin, farmer, Black town
Jones William, butcher & farmer
Kendall Edward Ambrose, tailor, Castleton
Kyte Jenevus J. boot & shoe maker, Pen-y-cae
Lawrence & Staley, grocers & drapers, Castleton
Morgan Edward. farmer, Spring court
Morgan Thomas, farmer, Lower house
Morgan Thomas, farmer & butcher, Black town
Morgan Wm., market gardener, Castleton 
Parsons James, farmer, Gelly Bear 
Parsons Mark, Coach & Horses P.H. & wheelwright, Castleton
Pretty David, market gardener
Roberts Eleanor (Mrs.), farmer, New house
Robinson Joseph, farmer
Samuel Rachel (Mrs.), market gardener
Sheppard Samuel, saddler, Castleton
Sydenham Charles, market gardener, Gwaunllwydd
Tucker John, coffee tavern, Castleton 
Williams Evan, market gardener"
At the beginning of 1900 young men of the villages used to meet at a coffee house in Castleton village for the purpose of discussing the content of various books, they called themselves the Young Mens Friendly Society.
In 1923 Lord Tredegar made a gift of money to build a stone building in Castleton for these young men and it is now known as the YMFS Institute.
The YMFS also had a tennis court for men which was used by women, but were not allowed to be members.
The Pastors at Castleton since 1900
1902 Rev Arthur Edwin Bishop …details not known name from 1901 census
1925-1936 James Howard Jones BA Wales
Came from Bethel Tonypandy ( 1921-1925)
Left fir Nazareth Mountain Ash (1936-1946)
Hope Cardiff (1946-1957)
Memorial Chapel Builth Wells ( 1957-1964) ( Retired)
Ebenezer Pearl Street, Cardiff (1965-1969)
Died September 24 1974
1938-1950 Lleufer Griffith Thomas B.U
Came from Croes – y – Parc, Pererstone- Super- Ely, Cardiff (1936-1938)
Left for Grangetown, Cardiff ( 1950-1957)
1950-1957 No pastor Listed.
1953-1957 Alwyn Griffiths BA BD Wales.
Came from Mount Zion, Cardigan , West Wales ( 1949-1953)
Mount Calvery Manselton , Swansea (1946-1949)
Church Street, Tredegar (1942-1946)
Left for Educational appointment Cardiganshire in 1957.
1958-1963) George Hayes
No details available. Left in 1964.?
1964-1971 Ian Edwin Morrison
Left for llanthewyn Road, Newport ( 1971)
1971-1981 Samuel James Gordon Jackson Ll.B
Came from park End Worcester (1968-1970)
Beulah Cilfynydd (1956-1957)
Coedpenmaen (1948-1957)
Rev Peter Richmond
April 1984 - May 1989
Deer Park Baptist Church Tenby
Rev Roger Foster
Rawtenstall Baptist Church lancashire
Bristol Baptist College September 1990 part Time Post at Castleton while studying, and then a full time post at Castleton – Present Retired after 27 years service.July 2017, Lives in Newport
Rev Rafael de Lima St Juliens Baptist Church Student pastor September 2017
Rafael de Lima Induction and Ordination at Gateway in September 2017
Rafael born Brazil and attended Bible College in Brazil.
However thr qualification is not recognised in UK and Rafael ( Raf ) was required to obtain his qualifications at Baptist College in Cardiff.
The chapel building at Castleton had become a financial and physical burden, in that it needed major structural building work due to erosion of the original materials used and the construction practices at the time of building (which do not compare with materials and building techniques used today), and the costs to repair the building structure would have been exorbitant (not including services such as heating and lighting etc).
After careful consideration the Church membership decided to vacate the building, and so on Easter Sunday 2001, the Pastor, Rev Roger Foster, led the service at New Salem Castleton for the last time.
At a point during in the service the whole congregation left the building and walked together with banners and singing down Marshfield Road to Gateway to finish the service there, marking the beginning of worship at Gateway on a permanent basis.
The end of a chapter in the life of Castleton Baptist Church, but the beginning of a new opportunity in the witness for God in the area of Castleton and Marshfield.
The move to Gateway has proved to be a great success, resulting in a growth of activities within the community and reinforcing Christian worship in new ways, with the fellowship bonding and working together with a greater sense of purpose, growing in faith, worship and outreach into the community.
The Gateway to Castleton Baptist Church remains at the heart of the community and many activities and initiatives have been introduced; including Holiday Club, children and young people evening activities, mens breakfast meetings, monthly worship services at Pentwyn House Nursing Home and open worship meetings.
Gateway is also used by other groups such as venue for childrens birthday parties, the well-known Slimming Club, Coffee Club and Luncheon Club introduced in 2010.
This has been a success in that the church is reaching out into the community and this has provided access for some folk into the church.
Lives continue to be won for Christ with baptisms being held indoors in a constructed baptismal pool.
Its 300 years since the first house group began, yet forward to today and groups of worshipers meeting in homes continue to be at the heart of the Church as they were all those years ago.
In 2010, it was decided to restructure the leadership of the Church by introducing Church Elders.
The Diaconate would remain, but roles and function would be changed, no roles more important than the other, but complimenting each other as we seek to care for the fellowship and advance Gods kingdom in the community.
The elders would provide a wider spiritual role within the Church with a particular emphasis on supporting the pastor Rev Roger Foster.
The first elders were Roger Evans and Reg Dodd.
The Deacons had a similar role yet focused on the management and stewardship of the Church, both elders and deacons coming together to form the Leadership Team for the church, meeting on a regular basis to ensure the spiritual development, teaching and discipleship of the Word of God, and bringing others to faith in God.
The Deacons in 2013 were Joan Cosslett, Mrs Ann Thomas, Jennifer Spear - Church Secretary, Gareth Thomas, David Greenway, Peter Bosley - Treasurer and David Bateman - Chairman and Lay Preacher. Mr Gareth Thomas sadly passed away during this term and he will be greatly missed by all who remember him - a gentle giant with a smile to match.
At a church Meeting in March 2014 the meeting agreed that the Deacons should report to the meeting only those issues that the meeting needed up dating or to seek a decision on substantial spending.
The Church Elders have a more pivital spiritual role in developing people and the fellowship.
In 2013 another development took place within the fellowship regarding Church Membership which is usually through Belivers Baptism.
It was decided through prayer, heart searching and many hours of debate seeking Gods will, to support applications for membership to those who have come from other fellowships that do not practice Belivers baptism, but provide evidence that they have been actively involved in that fellowship, displaying Christian teaching, faith and values.
The process requires candidates to be visited by representatives of the leadership team, following discussions with the candidate recommendations are made by the leadership representatives at a Church Meeting and, if favourable, the candidate can then be accepted into membership.
However, the option of Belivers baptism is the preferred option into membership and is offered to those candidates under the new rules of membership, but remains an open invitation if they decide to take this route in the future.
All other candidates without the spiritual background experiences outlined above will be required to be Baptised, as previously required for church membership.
The fellowship agreed that church meetings should include less information business agenda, but should concentrate more on spiritual matters and development, as the Diaconate were responsible for these practical items.
Approval on some issues would need church meeting approval.
This approach would take time to become embedded in the church.
The 300 th Anniversary of the first recorded Baptism in 1713 was an important landmark in the life of the church during 2013.
The celebrations featured around a number of events, the Pastor from lLanwenarth which was the mother church at the time of the early baptisms, lead the Church Anniversary Services also marking the 190 Church anniversary of the Church.
Another event was a church away day held in May 2013, when the fellowship of the church went to Kensington Baptist Church, Brecon, for a day together comprising of worship, teaching and a time of simply being together as a fellowship.
The BBC Sunday morning worship radio programme called Songs of Praise recorded two programmes in Gateway which were broadcast on national radio through out Wales on Sunday April 14, 2013.
The fellowship also held a Songs Of Praise afternoon and evening event at Gateway, including the singing of favorite songs and hymns, followed by refreshments and then followed by an evening service.
An updated history of Castleton Baptist Church and the role of Gateway Christian Centre was also produced as part of the 300th anniversary of these first baptisms.
The year 2013 was indeed a year to remember in the life of Castleton Baptist Church.
We go forward once again in His strength into the future.
In 2015 two new deacons were appointed Doctor Charlotte Edwards and Doctor Rhoswen Hailwood.
Mr David Greenway senior deacon, has decided through poor health to resign as a deacon. Davids contribution to the fellowship stretches back over many years and has held many posts in the Church. His knowledge of people in the fellowship, their families and experiences relating to codes of practice within the baptist church is formidable. David passed on in 2015, he will be sorely missed.
The Reverend Roger Foster announced his intended retirement in 2017, and the Church began to plan for that event.
In July 2017 new Deacons were appointed, as 4 existing deacons will complete their 5 year term on the diaconate in 2018: Nathan Evans, Stephen Shackell, Dorothy Thomas and Kath Lavell.
Rev Roger Foster retired in July 2017, and a number of special events were celebrated to mark his retirement.
During his ministry a number of important developments were implemented in the church, he was highly respected in the community and many people were baptised and committed their lives to the Lord.
The fellowship were greatly blessed during his ministry.
In September of 2017 a new pastor, Rafael De Lima - a young Brazilian pastor was appointed to the open position after much prayer and discernment.
His appointment marks a continuation of Castletons long tradition of employing young pastors and his ministry has been much loved in the 6 months since his arrival.
In late 2017 David Bateman, Chairman of the Deacons and compiler of this history, began to lose his fight with Parkinsons Disorder and he passed on in mid 2018.
A kind man, he was known across Glamorgan for preaching to those parishes without permanent pastors.
A 35-year resident attendee of the Church, he will be missed by all who knew him.