Smith & Jones Design Consultants



Guardian Visitor Centre

Ty Ebbw Fach, Six Bells

In 1960 an explosion blew through the pits in Six Bells, claiming the lives of 45 local men.

A fantastic memorial, called Guardian has been installed in Six Bells, design by artist Sebastian Boyesen.

We designed the visitor centre space allowing visitors to find out more about the tragedy, discover how Guardian was made and installed, and offer a look back to the 1960's and what life in Six Bells used to be like.

We created a mock 1960's room, filled with local images from the time. A stories chair fitted with an audio player and buttons allowed visitors to hear stories from locals that grew up in Six Bells in the 1960's. We sourced a period sideboard and refurbished the drawers, allowing visitors to see objects from the time.

A set of industrial steel lockers were used to house interpretation relating to the life of a miner with some sections being converted into glazed display cabinets.

The walls of the space around the Guardian interpretation were painted black, creating a real contrast with the roomset. We installed digital touchscreens with video content and stories, replica newspapers with stories of the explosion and a mock incident report.

The Prince of Wales opened the visitor centre space to much acclaim.