William P. Thomas 1852-1909

“Gwilym Hendy”

William Thomas was a native of Llwynhendy but came to Aberaman in ill-health and rather poor circumstances. Nevertheless, he was a composer of no mean order, as witness the success of his anthem, “Teyrnasoedd y ddaear,” at the Llanelli Eisteddfod out of 32 compositions sent in. Other anthems of his which have been favourites of Cymanfaoedd are “Deuwch ato Ef”, and “Ffarwel.” He also conducted a number of children’s choirs with success.

We regret to record the death of Mr Wm. Philip Thomas (Gwilym Hendy), who resided with his daughter and son-in-law at 326, Cardiff Road, Aberaman. Deceased, who was 54 years of age, he was well-known in musical circles. He rendered valuable assistance in past years to the congregational singing of the Welsh Baptist Churches of the Aberdare Valley.

He was a composer of several anthems and hymn-tunes. His last effort in this direction was a tune called “Ton yr Adfywiad,” composed after the Revival of 1904-05. Gwilym Hendy was also fond of poetry, and some of his contributions appeared in the Welsh column of this journal. He was a faithful member at Gwawr Welsh Baptist Church.

The interment took place on Easter Tuesday afternoon at the Aberdare Public Cemetery. The burial obsequies were conducted by the Rev. James Griffiths, Calfaria, Aberdare.

The following were the mourners: 1st coach: Mrs Elizabeth Williams, daughter; Mrs W. J. Lloyd, Gowerton; Mrs A. Samuel, Cilfynydd; Mrs John Evans, Llandybie, sisters; and Mr Henry Thomas, Llanelly brother. 2nd coach: Mrs Joseph Thomas Aberdare; Mrs P. Thomas, Pengam, and Mrs John Thomas, Aberdare, all nieces; Mr and Mrs William Evans, brother-in-law and sister-in-law; Mrs Brown, niece, and Mr and Mrs Sam Harlow, nephew and niece. The mourners walking behind the hearse were: Mr Herbert Williams, son-in-law; Messrs Joseph Thomas and John Thomas, Aberdare, nephews; Mr Philip Thomas, Pengam, nephew; Mr Edward Williams, Dowlais, cousin, and Mr Tom Evans, cousin, Aberdare

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