Our History

According to the local newspaper at the time “The llanelli Guardian” the first recorded game played was away against Felinfoel on the 19th December and was proved to be a very successful start, as Furnace emerged winners by two tries and four touchdowns to nil. 

Again according to the same newspaper the 2nd game was against Llanelli Rovers at Peoples Park with the opponents winning by a try and two minors.

Furnace RFC earliest headquarters was at the Dimpath Hotel. Then in 1918 the headquarters moved to Stradey Arms. This remained the base until the end of season 1968/69, when in April they moved to their newly constructed Clubhouse at Castle Collery Road, its base to this current day. During the clubs formative years it established an impressive record and took many honours. Up to the outbreak of the First World War Furnace’s reputation of being a good solid rugby side was fully acknowledged in the area.

At the end of hostilities - Furnace RFC soon reformed - moved to the Stradey Arms and left Dimpath fields for Furnace fields where they played out until 1945 when unfortunately had to foreit the lease because of industrial development where Mowlems ( formally Issac Jones) now stands

When games started at the aforementioned Furnace Fields it was reported that before goalposts could be erected a hedge had to be removed, claypits filled and a stream had to be diverted. The first game was against  halfway, watched by the entire village. Following World War II, the club played its home fixtures at Stradey Park by kind permission of Llanelli RFC. It is worth noting that in 1946 correspondence was received from Llanelli RFC informing the club that no useful purpose would be served if we decided to change our title to Llanelli  United - thankfully this  suited Furnace RFC’s ambitions.

Unfortunately there then followed a period of rugby obscurity for the club - largely due to the fact of availability for their rugby field despite the huge efforts of all in the club to resolve.

The club got back on its feet in 1953 following a meeting which was held under the car porch of Mr Hugh Rees in Ynys y Cwm Road. At this meeting it was decided to start up a youth team to complement the senior squad. Training started at Penyfai farm off Penyfai lane and also at Caermawr farm field above the quarry. 

The individuals who helped with these sessions were:

Elvet Jones - Wales and British Lion

Fred Rees - Llanelli RFC

Ieuan Samuel - New Dock Stars

Gwyn Philips - New Dock Stars

Due to the impact of World War II,most teams played with a mixture of youth and senior players. Some senior matches at the time were against Llandovery, Tai Bach and Tenby. 

It was reported in Club minutes that following the away match to Tenby, senior player Mr Glyn Samuel had failed to be at  the collection point at 11.30pm and the bus left without him and he made his own way home.

The team was financed by Committee and players organising weekly chicken dinner raffles supported by local butcher Mr Johnny Thomas.

Players who did not sell tickets had to pay half a crown into club funds. The need for the club’d own playing field was now of paramount importance and they set about a search to resolve this problem once and for all. Areas being considered were:

A field adjacent to Cae Delyn House, Furnace

Lake lands off Pentrepoeth Road, Furnace

A field at Cilangwyn Farm above Maengwynne estate.

In 1954 the club secured a lease for land from the Llanelli Athletic Association, kindly donated by the Stradey Estates, which the club has retained up to the present day.