Wednesday, 29 September 2010


On Wednesday 22nd September 2010 I published a larger version of this photograph and asked:
What is the name of the street in which I was standing?

The answer is Maes Cefndy. (I was standing in Maes Cefndy looking across Cefndy Road towards Aled Avenue.)

The winners are:
Dave Rowlands, Dorothy Jones, Jane Shuttle, Pauline Hammans, Phil Hughes, Richard & Ceri Swinney, Sue Handley, and The Great Gareth.



Coronation Day 1953

A recent acquisition here at Jones Towers is this Coronation Year 1953 item showing an unidentified group of people, possibly next-door neighbours, outside 'Brynteg' in Edward Henry Street, Rhyl. There is no house of that name now. Looking at the distances from door to windows, I’d say that particular house no longer exists although there are many similar still to be seen.

At present quite a few houses are unoccupied and some are boarded up (as shown below) prior to new housing initiatives by Welsh Assembly Government. The fate of the houses is uncertain but it would be nice if Edward Henry Street, which has been ruined by bedsitters, flatlets and social housing for singles, could go some way towards regaining a family atmosphere.



Rhyl, Prestatyn

Susie Liddle is a member of RhylCreate, a consortium of local artists and craftspeople. Susie is from Sale, Cheshire (now part of Greater Manchester) and has been in North Wales since 1971.

She has trained in various aspects of creating and teaching art. She gained a Foundation Degree in Art & Design at Llandrillo College and continues to train for a professional print-maker’s qualification.

Susie is a multimedia artist. She does screen printing, print-making, ceramics, paper cutting, cyanotype and painting. One of the many threads in her work is a Victorian influence as shown below.

She is based at the Regional Print Centre in Wrexham and often has items on sale at RhylCreate’s Gallery 36, 36 Kinmel Street, Rhyl, and Scala, Prestatyn, and other places. Here are more work samples:

Susie Liddle can be contacted by email: or by mobile phone 07787 567 892. Please click here to see her blog:
and/or here for her Facebook page:


Earlier this year, there was a favourable response to photos and memorabilia of St. Mary’s Convent School, Russell Road, Rhyl, sent by Diana Davies of Canada (was Diana Nicholas).

Above is another of her Convent School photos from the 1950s. It shows participants in a Sports Day obstacle race. Kneeling at the front are sisters Gillian and Jackie Roache. Standing, left to right: Don’t know / Pat Walker / Pat Kirkup / Sheena Sweeney / Janet Jones / Maureen Digan.

The Convent School girls looked happier than your average school pupils. No wonder they remember those days fondly!

Also from Diana is the following card postmarked Rhyl 9.30pm on July 10th 1908 which shows an Army camp that existed somewhere locally well before World War 1.The message is in faded pencil and sent to a Miss Lily Spencer at 54 Georgiana Street in Bury. 

Nice pix! Thanks, Diana.


Wednesday, 22 September 2010


Click on any image to see a bigger version.

World War 1, World War One, First World War, The Great WarThese pictures were received some time ago. They are postcards from the collection of Ann Hayes.

At the top would be another scene from the legendary ‘Sunny Rhyl’s June Carnival 1929’ which has been the subject of previous posts. It was published by J. Smailes & Son Press Photographers of Grosvenor Avenue.

The soldiers card was published by Mr. & Mrs. Jno. Williams of Rhyl. Ann says, “I hope they weren't real soldiers as they look very young to me. The postmark is not clear but the period must be around World War 1.”

Finally, a card showing St. Thomas’ Church, Russell Road, the parish church where Ann was christened. She attended Sunday school there in the 1950s.

Nice pix! Thanks, Ann.



This photograph was taken last month in Rhyl by Yours Truly. The question is: What is the name of the street in which I was standing?

No second tries accepted!

The closing date is Tuesday 28th September 2010 at 12 noon and the result will be published on this site the day afterwards. Please send your answer by email to:



This picture is from Rhyl History Club Community Archive; please click on it if you wish to see a bigger version. The caption says Rhyl High School Sixth Form 1975. Of the girls sitting, Vanessa Nash is fifth from the left. I wonder who else have we here.

Come on, own up! Send your confession by email to:



Last Wednesday's quiz was as follows:

Q: Is this Tom Wood and his Merry Men, E.H. Williams’ Merrie Men or Gilbert Rogers Jovial Jesters?

A: Gilbert Rogers Jovial Jesters.
They appeared in summer seasons from 1907 until the 1920s at the minstrel pitch on the sands opposite High Street. They were the longest-running troupe to perform there. The photo was taken within the pitch's enclosure and is dated 1914.

Q: Near the middle of the picture is a street sign blanked out. What is the missing name?

A: Eastville Avenue.

Q: Where in Rhyl would you find this scene?

A: Underneath the Vale Road Bridge (Alexandra Bridge) on the bus station side.


This week the following readers score a win for each correct answer:
Dave Rowlands THREE WINS
Dorothy Jones THREE WINS
Jane Shuttle THREE WINS
Richard & Ceri Swinney THREE WINS
Sue Handley TWO WINS
The Great Gareth TWO WINS

Overall, and for the first time,  we have co-leaders running neck and neck!
24 Jane Shuttle
24 The Great Gareth

Sue Handley, Dorothy Jones, Richard & Ceri Swinney, Geoff Hughes, Pauline Hammans and The Legendary Lloyd & Kerry have all achieved double-figure scores.
Comparatively new players Dave Rowlands and Wayne Chadwick are making rapid progress.

WED 17th MAY 2017 UPDATE: Recently arrived here at Jones Towers is this portrait of Gilbert Rogers and his Jovial Jesters without the striped blazers and straw boaters and looking almost normal. This is a card postmarked 1917.

Exactly the same personnel appear in a differing shot in Bill Ellis’ book Entertainment In Rhyl And North Wales, his being dated 1907. Working from Bill’s text, I can identify the faces above as follows:

Standing at the back, left to right: Derek Knowles, Norman Walker, Jack Jewell (Jimmy Jewell’s father, says Bill), George Gilder and Dan Brooks.

Sitting at the front (l to r): Reggie Heaton, Gilbert Rogers himself and Wilfred Knowles.



The postcard at the top is dated 1921 and was sent from Mabel who was staying with Mrs. Bromley, High Street, Rhyl, to a friend in Didsbury. It begins intriguingly: Dear Agnes, We did not go to Birmingham yesterday but Father drove us to Rhyl instead . . .

The card in the middle has an unclear postmark; the date would be around the same time or perhaps a tad earlier. It was written in pencil by E.C. at 28 Victoria Road, Rhyl, and sent to Mother in Macclesfield.

The final one is dated 1938 and was sent from W.B. in Rhyl to Miss Jenkins of Kensington, London, remarking on the lovely sands in Rhyl. I like to think that Miss Jenkins was adventurous enough to come eventually and see for herself.


Wednesday, 15 September 2010


Click on any image to see a bigger version.

Here is another trio of multiview cards. The black-and-white is postmarked 1959 and was sent from Helen in Rhyl to Elsie in West Malvern, Worcs.

The one featuring a girl in Welsh hat and shawl is unposted but somebody has written 1961 on the back. The colours may not be real. Pavilion with light green dome? Hmmmm.

The final card is unposted and undated. Seaquarium (top left and right) opened in 1992 and Ocean Beach Fun Fair (bottom left) closed in 2007. Let’s call it mid-to-late 1990s and be damned.



At the top is a picture of entertainers on Rhyl sands. The question:
(a) Is it Tom Wood and his Merry Men, E.H. Williams’ Merrie Men
or Gilbert Rogers’ Jovial Jesters?
If you don’t know the answer, have a guess – you’ve got a 1 in 3 chance of being right!

In the centre is a photograph taken last month in Rhyl by Yours Truly. Near the middle of the picture is a street sign blanked out. The question:
(b) What is the missing name?

Finally there is another photo taken this month. The question:
(c) Where in Rhyl would you find this scene?

If you get (a), (b) or (c) right you score ONE WIN.
If you get two right you score TWO WINS.
If you get all three right you score THREE WINS.
No second tries accepted!

The closing date is Tuesday 21st September 2010 at 12 noon and the result will be published on this site the day afterwards. Please send your answers by email to:



World War 2, World War Two, Second World War
It’s about time we had another World War 2 item on this blog. This photograph includes Mr. J.H. ‘Lippy’ Lipman who ran a jewellery shop in High Street, Rhyl; he is the gent in the foreground on far right. The photo, which shows locals meeting Polish refugee children at Rhyl Railway Station, is from the collection of Peter Trehearn.

Lippy was known as ‘The Wire King’. In addition to his jewellery shop in town he had a kiosk on the prom opposite Queen Street where he would cleverly bend wire into names or pictures, and create bespoke jewellery at great speed before your very eyes.


SUN 14th AUG 2016 UPDATE: Sandra Nicholson of Bicester near Oxford has been in touch to say that J.H. (Jacob Hayman) Lipman was her great uncle, i.e. her maternal grandfather’s brother.

As a child in the 1950s Sandra knew him as "Uncle Jack" and she has sent a splendid photo of his kiosk on the prom in late 1940s.
In the picture is Sandra’s late mother Bella who was working for Mr. Lipman at the time. The family was from Riga in Latvia and they were Jewish, as were children in the Railway Station photo.

Bella was from the side of the family whose surname was Ostrov. She was born in Llandovery, Carmarthenshire, and grew up mainly in Birmingham.

While in Rhyl, Bella met her future husband. In January 1950 they married and she became Bella Burman. The couple moved to Liverpool.

Mr. Lipman The Wire King passed away in 1959 in St. Asaph.   

Thanks for contributing this information to the blog, Sandra.



AbergeleAbergele, Gwrych CastleIt’s about time we had more sport on this blog, so at the top is a 1960s soccer team pic sent by Les Williams. Can anyone pinpoint the date? The caption says:
Gele Athletic, who consolidated their position at the top of the Dyserth Area by beating the champions, Rhyl Wanderers, 2-1 at the Coronation Gardens, Rhyl, on Saturday. Left to right, back row: W. Miller, trainer; J. Whitney, S. Brewerton, H. Williams, M. McGregor, K. Lamb, M. Snelson, J. Gizzi; front: T. Roberts, J. Jones, J. Holt, A. Jones and B. Morris.

Also pictured is Randolph ‘Randy’ Turpin (born 1928, died 1966) who was one of Europe’s leading Middleweight boxers of the 1940s and 1950s. He was no stranger to Rhyl having been based for a while at Gwrych Castle, Abergele, where he trained with helpers from Rhyl.

In 1951 in London, Randy beat Sugar Ray Robinson and won the world title; suddenly he became a national hero and some of his glory rubbed off on North Wales.

George Owen is still looking for a film made about Randy Turpin at Gwrych; the soundtrack includes a recording by a local children's choir. If you have information about the film please send an email to:



Last Wednesday I posted a larger version of the above photo and asked: In what street would you find this doorway? The answer is Wellington Road. It is the doorway to flats at No.9 Wellington Road as shown below.

Also I posted a larger version of the following picture in which a street sign has been blanked out and asked: What is the missing name?

The answer is Olinda Street.

The winners:
ONE WIN for Wayne Chadwick (Wayne’s 7th win).
TWO WINS for Dave Rowlands (total 6 wins), Dorothy Jones (15 wins), Jane Shuttle (21 wins), Richard & Ceri Swinney (15 wins), Sue Handley (17 wins) and The Great Gareth (still leading with 22 wins).


[These references are added here for indexing purposes: Wellington Chambers, Tiffany's cafe sandwich bar, Electric Beach tanning.]



These pictures of Bath Street Methodist Church and Epworth Lodge next door were taken this week by Yours Truly.

Julie Roberts writes: "The buildings have been bought by Rhyl Christian Spiritualist Church with help from the Spiritualists’ National Union. We are naming the church Rhyl Spiritual Centre and hoping to have services from Sunday 19th September 2010. A lot of work needed doing on the place but it is still beautiful. We are looking to rent out Epworth Lodge."

Thanks for the info, Julie. Good to see old buildings coming back into use instead of being knocked down and lost forever.


Wednesday, 8 September 2010


The Conserberal government in Westminster has a Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government. He is Eric Pickles who is a Conservative MP for an Essex constituency. One of his first acts in office was to urge councils to stop blighting towns with unnecessary signs and other street clutter.

A couple of days ago I watched in awe as a team of Denbighshire County Council workmen erected signs, one at the entrance to Rhyl bus station and one in the middle of the station, telling bus drivers to SLOW DOWN.

Those came in addition to Denbighshire council signs shown above.

Signs that state the obvious are insulting; signs that are unclear in their meaning are frustrating; and a proliferation of signs can seem oppressive. It is amazing that councillors and staff have been sitting around tables authorising the things for years without ever seeing them for what they are – a kind of pollution.


On the other hand, decorating public places can improve the environment. The photograph below shows a mural in the bus station. The design incorporates the old Pavilion and the pier with wind turbines to the left and Skytower to the right. The mural brightens up a blank wall, although I am disappointed to find that there are no plans to make it more colourful.



These photographs were taken during the last couple of weeks in Rhyl by Yours Truly.

The upper photo shows a doorway decorated by tiles. The question:
(a) In what street would you find this doorway?

The lower picture includes a street sign on which the name has been blanked out. The question:
(b) What is the missing name?

If you get (a) or (b) right you score a WIN.
If you get both right you score TWO WINS.
No second tries accepted!

The closing date is Tuesday 14th September 2010 at 12 noon and the result will be published on this site the day afterwards. Please send your answers by email to:



The Skytower opened on Rhyl promenade in 1989. It had originated at a garden festival in Scotland; we bought it for around £825,000 (not a bad price bearing in mind we’ve had 21 years of use so far). The revolving cabin rises to a height of about 240 feet/73 metres.

The following photographs were sent by George Owen. They were taken by John Price during the erecting of the tower. John is an ex-Pilkingtons employee who went to work for a small local plant hire company. The pictures are unique; we’ve never seen them before.

Click on any image to see a bigger version.

And to bring us up to date, here below is a photo taken in April 2010 by Yours Truly:


FRI 20th MAR 2015 UPDATE: The Skytower closed at the end of the summer season in 2010. At present there is neither a confirmed plan to
re-open it as a ride nor a plan to remove it.



Last Wednesday I posted this picture of Queens Hotel, West Parade, and posed the question:
What would be the nearest date: 1900, 1905, 1910 or 1915?

The answer: 1900
This is because from 1902-1907 the Queen’s Arcade (the shopping arcade part of the ill-fated Queen Palace development) would be on your right-hand side of the hotel instead of Connah's.
The fuzzy old pic below, which has the hotel far left, illustrates the point.

After the Queen’s Palace fire of 1907, the row of buildings was quite swiftly repaired and restored to height (without the dome) and there was no intermediate period during which a single-storey Connah’s could have been created.

Seems odd to think that Connah's could be hiring out motor cars as early as 1900, but local historian the late J.W. Jones (Joe Swan) noted that Rhyl had its first motor car in 1898.

The winners: Dave Rowlands who has chalked up his 4th win in a very short time, and Jane Shuttle who now has 19 wins and is only one step behind the leader The Great Gareth.



Last Wednesday I posted larger versions of these photos of an old shed and interesting sign above its door.
The question: In what street would you see the building?

The answer: Kingsley Avenue.

The winners: Dorothy Jones (13th win), Sue Handley (15th win) and The Great Gareth (20th win).


[These references are added here for indexing purposes: White Lion Hotel, Foulkes High Street.]