The village of Ponteginori
A story related to rock salt
Extending along the right bank of the river Cecina, this village gets its name from the bridge that the Marquis Ginori built over the river, between 1831 and 1835, to connect his castle with the road in the Cecina Valley. The bridge that today crosses the river at the confluence with the stream Trossa was built after the last war, in a very different architecture from the original, which was destroyed by the retreating Germans in 1944.
The development came at the beginning of the last century when the Belgian group Solvay began to mine
rock-salt in the neighborhood, a mineral found in abundance underground. Thus it was that in the 1920s the multinational built, next to their plant, that was for many years the major source of employment for the local people, a village to house the workers, management and their families. Even though Ponteginori, at first sight, hides its history, a short walk and an attentive eye brings to light the unmistakable characteristics of the “Solvay village”, similar to those built in the same period in Rosignano Solvay and San Carlo (near San Vincenzo ). Red brick buildings with gardens in rows for the workers, detached houses for the managers and community services, such as surgeries, schools, social clubs and playing fields. Even today the factory siren that rings at midday and six in the afternoon acts as the time piece for the town.
Differing from the surrounding buildings is the modern church dedicated to Pope Saint Leo the Great, built in the 1960s. Nearby is another church, smaller, dedicated to the Madonna.
Thanks to its position on the main road 68, Ponteginori today offers all the fundamental services necessary for the local inhabitants and visitors, such as small shops, a bank, a post office and surgery. In the summer a tennis court and open air swimming pool are available.