Stanleytown is located in the ancient parish of Llanwonno. The last working mine in the village closed in the 1960s setting off a long period of economic decline which worsened following the 1984-1985 national miner's strike which resulted in pits in nearby locations such as Maerdy closing. The local passenger train line had closed in the 1960s following the Beeching Axe review, which also limited the prospects of easy commuting to Cardiff.
Llanwonno Rd, Stanleytown
As part of the Tylorstownelectoral ward. A new relief road "opens up" the valley for outward transport and inward investment the road terminating at the entrance to Stanleytown and the stopping point of Pontygwaith. Due to the topography of the Rhondda Fach which is a narrow valley with steep sides and limited flat land on the valley floor the construction of the road was a major civil-engineering project many years in the planning and two and a half years in the execution.