Hughes, John (Pontypridd)
b Dowlais, Glam 1873, d Llantwit Fadre, Pontypridd, Glam 1932. Alan Luff writes that he was ‘like so many musicians, a product of the South Wales coal fields, with their harsh conditions alleviated by a vigorous chapel life that in its turn supported a strong musical, above all choral movement’ (Welsh Hymns and their Tunes 1990, p222). Soon after John’s birth the family moved to nearby Llantwit Fadre (Llanilltyd Faerdref), where at 12 years old he started work at Glynn Colliery. He moved to the traffic department of GWR (the Great Western Railway) and continued there for the rest of his life. A nearly-lifelong member of Salem Baptist Ch in his home town, he succeeded his musical father as a deacon and as its precentor. He composed anthems, marches and several hymn tunes including one of the most successful of all time. No.868.