L © The Bonau Cabbage Patch THE POOL AERATED WATER WORKS, PWLL, LLANELLY (REES & RICHARDS POP WORKS) MESSRS REES, RICHARDS & WILLIAMS A brief history: (Williams was only with the firm until 1906) An early advert placed in the Llanelli & County Guardian promoting their wares, was dated April 1888. Originally water for the soft drinks was drawn from an Artesian Well, situated inside the factory. After this well was covered in, water from the mains was specially filtered for the purpose.  Horse and cart was used in the early days for deliveries. Long hours were worked at the end of deliveries as the horses had to be fed, watered and groomed. Thomas Richards and John Hughes Rees took turns to stay late every other night. Occasionally, a horse would bolt and the load would be tipped. (This photograph was taken between 1888 and 1897. The two buildings behind the Pop factory are of the Wauneos Woollen Mill which was in production from 1874 until just after World War I ). The last horse was sold off in 1943. Lorries could not be replaced at the beginning of World War II. One lorry was commandeered for the war effort. Deliveries were zoned from the commencement of war to October 1947 to conserve vital fuel supplies. Rationing continued for a few years after the War ended - only limited supplies of raw materials and new bottles could be obtained. For much of the war years only the same quantities as empties returned could be delivered. During the 1939 - 1945 war, an air raid shelter was built at the rear of the premises, and a night watchman was employed in case of incendiary bombs etc. Young girl employees would take turns to stay until 10pm when the night watchman would take over. About 18 people were employed in the 1950’s. Early bottles had the firms name imprinted on them. Rees, Richards and Williams bottles were of the Hamilton and Codd type, the Codd bottle having a marble as well as a washer to act as a seal to keep the lemonade fizzy. Children would attempt to break these bottles to get to the marbles. Stoneware Bottles were for Ginger Beer, then came bottles with swing stoppers and then internal threaded stoppers. The stoppers were made of ebonite and had replaceable rubber washers for when the rubber perished as the stoppers were washed and reused just like the bottles. The stoppers also had the name of the company imprinted on them. In the 1950’s there were two lorries out every day doing deliveries, and in summertime an extra lorry was used to cope with the higher demand. In wintertime there would only be 2 or 3 days production per week - the rest of the week being spent on maintenance, such as painting the factory walls, repairing wooden crates etc. Rees, Richards & Williams Pool (Pwll) Mineral Wks Ginger Beer Bottle (c 1890) This bottle was recently sold on E-bay for £160 Rees & Richards Pool (Pwll) Mineral Wks Ginger Beer Bottle The firm won a Silver medal for lemonade at a Brewers Exhibition at the Royal Agricultural Hall, London in November 1938. Production ceased in 1982 and the Company closed in 1994. The building was demolished in 1998. Source:  Colin Rees