BMI History Timeline


The final stones on the front of the building were laid on 4th December 1925. Originally opened as a single storey snooker hall it was owned by the Coal Industry and the Social Welfare Organisation and paid for out of the Oakdale Miners’ wages at 3d a week.


In this year two further floors are added to the building to include the stage, auditorium, dance floor, reading room, library, ladies room and rehearsal rooms for local societies. Original events staged in the building included tea dances, snooker/billiards, reading groups, rehearsals and union meetings for local miners.


The building fell in to disrepair in the 1970s/1980s with the pit closures and in this year the trustees sold it to Islwyn Borough Council who promised to make it available for community use.


The building reopens in February 1992 as a community arts and entertainment venue thanks to funding from Islwyn Borough Council and the Welsh Office. The opening series of concerts saw local school children perform on the same stage as Ken Dodd, Jasper Carrott and the Welsh National Opera.


In 2010, Caerphilly County Borough Council’s Cabinet invested £1.6m in a complete refurbishment. Carried out over four years, the work was funded from the local authority’s Asset Management Fund.
In 2015, Blackwood Miners’ Institute awarded Arts Portfolio status by the Arts Council of Wales.
Blackwood Miners’ Institute is a Grade 11* listed building and has charitable status.
Registered Charity: 1000905