Thursday, 30 July 2015



This shot of Rhyl Pavilion taken in 1964 captures the flavour of the paddling pool on its west side. The paddling pool outlived the Pavilion and sometimes drew a bigger crowd anyway.

Unlike the present paddling pool in Drift Park the one above had no admission charge, it was open every summer day, and anybody could enjoy the sight of kiddies having fun kicking about in the water without being thought of as a pervert.

We live in sad times.

Sex abuse scandals involving children (once believed to be exclusively a Catholic Church issue) have been brought to light in such a wide variety of settings that the overall extent of the problem has been revealed as enormous.

The age of innocence that produced the multiview postcard below seems long, long ago. Those of us who can remember that far back must be forgiven for feeling nostalgic.


Tuesday, 28 July 2015


This is another post that pulls together pairs of pictures not previously published in this blog. Firstly two dramatic shots of building the present Foryd Bridge which opened in 1932 (pictures from Rhyl History Club):

building constructing

building constructing

Next are a couple of photos of HMS Rhyl. The one on your left is 1960s and the other is probably 1970s:

The following are World War 1 and World War 2 memorial plaques in Christ Church, Water Street, Rhyl, photographed by Fred Burns:

The family name Rhydwen Jones appears on both plaques. 

Click on any image to see a bigger version.

Now, here are two adverts - the front and back covers of a Pavilion circus programme which is said to be from 1954:

A connection between the two shows advertised above is that they were both staged by Captain A. Prince-Cox, F.R.M.S. (This is an acronym of which I can make no sense in a showbiz context. Perhaps a reader will enlighten us on this point.)


Above is a colour postcard from my own collection showing the Sun Centre (opened June 1980) as it looked before the new Pavilion Theatre was built at its side.

Below is a Daily Post photo of the new Pavilion Theatre being built; it opened in September 1991.


Colin Jones / email:


Monday, 27 July 2015


IN the Labour Party leadership contest, Yvette Cooper is wife of former Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls who was quite rightly thrown out by the electorate in the last General Election.

Liz Kendall? No, I could never take seriously anybody who likes rap music.

Andy Burnham looks too much of a suit, too ‘New Labour’ for my liking.

By comparison Jeremy Corbyn (pictured above) seems ‘Old Labour’, an unapologetic left-winger who opposed Britain’s involvement in the disastrous Iraq War.

Our 'special relationship' with the USA is more trouble than it is worth. The
United States government yearns for control of the world’s oil and gas supplies - hence its military interference in Arab countries, universal spying and tiresome cold war against Russia.

The greed of the United States is a threat to world peace and stability. Jeremy Corbyn may understand that, but the other candidates probably do not. His chances of winning are remote but I'm glad he is there.

Whoever becomes leader, there may not be another Labour government. Labour’s philosophy of high tax and high spend and their obsession with public services sound all wrong in the 21st century.

I believe Labour Party dominance is harming Wales and damaging Rhyl. We need to dump the Party and move on.


Last Wednesday at Rhyl Town Hall the Welsh Government’s First Minister Carwyn Jones (Labour) appeared at a public meeting.

During a question and answer session Mr. Jones was taken to task about a ‘North-South Divide’ whereby South Wales gets the lion’s share of resources.

Wales, like England, is bottom heavy. The bulk of the population is in the Southeast and so a lot of Welsh Government expenditure is there.

One thing that might benefit North Wales is a new direct railway link to South Wales. That would boost the economy here in the North and bring us better access to jobs in the South.

This has been talked about for years but we seem no nearer to it. So why are waiting?

All together now: Oh why are we waiting / Why-ay are we wai-ting / Oh why are we wai-ay-ting / Oh why why why.


Sunday, 26 July 2015


Above are two Rhyl photos taken in recent times by Yours Truly.
The question: What else have the two photos got in common?
The correct answer to this question would score one win.

Click on any image to see a bigger version.

Below is a postcard showing a view from the bowling green on the eastern promenade looking westwards.
The question: What would be the nearest date: 1940 or 1950?
The correct answer to this question would score one win.

Have a go at one or both of these questions - it's just a bit of fun!

You have until the end of Saturday 1st August 2015 to send your entry.
Second tries not accepted.
The result will be published on Sunday 2nd August 2015 around Midday.

Colin Jones / email:



Last Sunday I posted the following picture of an old Rhyl badge. 
The question: What do the initials D.M.W.H.C. stand for?

The answer: Derbyshire Miners' Welfare Holiday Centre.
Very minor variations of that wording were allowable. The camp operated in the 1960s and '70s in Marsh Road:

Also I posted the following wall signs of former shops.
The question: In what roads or streets would you find the signs?

The answer: Bodfor Street and Grange Road.

The Bodfor Street shop (above) is the former F. Knowles' at No.32. The Grange Road shop is the former Victoria Wine, more recently the Late Night Shop, at No.12:

With a set of correct answers (one about the initials, and two place names) are: Jane Shuttle, The Great Gareth, Sue Handley and Dorothy Jones.

In this season of the quiz The Great Gareth leads with 29 wins, Richard & Ceri Swinney have 26, Jane Shuttle has 26 and Sue Handley 20.
Dorothy Jones and Dilys Bagnall are in double figures, and there are three more scorers so far!

The Derbyshire Miners' photos above and many other Rhyl pix are for sale on the Francis Frith website:

FRI 1st SEP 2017 UPDATE: Derbyshire Miners' cards postmarked 1967 (The Main Bar) and 1969 -

The following multiview card is undated and yet timeless in a way -


Thursday, 23 July 2015


Last week I accompanied my pal Janine Rees-Denman to Flintshire Record Office at Hawarden (Welsh: Penarl√Ęg) where we deposited files belonging to her late father Glyn Rees who studied Rhyl history.

Pictured below with Janny is Flintshire’s Head Archivist Steven Davies, and on the table are some of Glyn’s files.

Flintshire Record Office, Hawarden

The documents inside the files are mainly photocopies of items from old Rhyl newspapers, every one meticulously inscribed on the back in pencil with the name of newspaper and publication date. 

Many files relate to entertainment: local theatre shows, exhibitions, public competitions such as beauty contests, and valuable information about early performers such as minstrels and pierrots.

There is a file about accidents at sea, and another about accidental deaths and crimes. One file is dedicated to the notorious serial offender in Victorian times in Rhyl, John Jones known as Jac y Bala or Jack y Bala.

Other files reflect the development of Rhyl in all sorts of ways. Plus there is a special set of files about a house named Dyffryn Aled in Llansannan and the Meyrick family who lived there. 

We had a lovely afternoon in Hawarden village – a place dripping with history – and it’s nice to know that Glyn’s collection rests where the public can see and enjoy it.

My best wishes to Janny, and to her husband Gareth who is not too well

at present, and to her sister Lynne In Scotland.


To the world I can report that, in Hawarden near Flintshire Record Office, the Gladstone Memorial Fountain still stands:

Even the village post office has a touch of history with its red phone box shown in this 2011 shot attributed to a photographer known mysteriously as Rept0n1x:

Here are a couple of Hawarden golden oldies to round off this post: a card of the village postmarked 1905, and a cigarette card of the castle from before we understood that having a smoking habit was a bad idea.

Click on any image to see a bigger version.
cigarette card

Colin Jones / email:


Tuesday, 21 July 2015


This building in Water Street, Rhyl, has always been named Christ Church but the name of the congregation has changed several times over the years and at present it is called The United Church in Rhyl, whose Minister is Reverend Paul Robinson:

Christ Church, United Church

The church owns the adjacent offices where Citizens' Advice Bureau lives:

The first version of Christ Church, Water Street was built and opened in 1858. The present town hall had not yet been built. The church had a spire (a steeple). Here is a drawing of it:

The church was the moving force behind creating in 1881 the original Christ Church School on corner of Vaughan Street and Crescent Road where there is now a telephone exchange. It comprised three schools: Boys, Girls, Infants:

In 1885 the original church was pulled down and reconstructed as the building we see in Water Street today. The United Church in Rhyl is also at Tynewydd Road:


The colour photos in this post are a trailer for the main feature. My pal Fred Burns, a professional photographer whose studio is in Bedford Street, has taken a super series of pictures of the exterior and interior of Christ Church, Water Street.

To see a slideshow of them on my YouTube channel RhylTime please click on the following link:


Colin Jones / email:


Sunday, 19 July 2015


This old badge is a bit of a rarity. 
The question: What do the initials D.M.W.H.C. stand for?

Below are two Rhyl photos taken in the last few weeks by Yours Truly. They show wall signs of former shops.
The question: In what roads or streets would you find the signs?

You need three correct answers (one about the initials, and two place names) to score a win.

You have until the end of Saturday 25th July 2015 to send your entry.
Second tries not accepted.
The result will be published on Sunday 26th July 2015 around Midday.

Colin Jones / email:



Last Sunday I posted the above late 1950s/early ‘60s item showing a Rhyl shop named Hubbard’s.
The question: In what road or street was Hubbards?
The answer: Wellington Road. The single-storey building still exists; it is opposite Sidoli’s ice cream parlour.
(Photo from Rhyl History Club)


2) This early 1950s item shows a car park on your right. From 1970 to 1975 there was a special attraction on that site.
The question: What was the special attraction?
The answer: Pentre Bach Welsh Model Village. It was under the same ownership as Ocean Beach Fun Fair.
(Photo from Daily Post)

3) The following picture card is postmarked 1927.
The question: Where in Rhyl was the picture taken?
The answer: Elwy Hall. The front of the building is in Grange Road.


4) In the above photo a sign has been blanked out.
The question: What is the missing name?
The answer: Laurel Court. Not far from Ysgol Bryn Hedydd.

5) In the following photo two signs have been blanked out.
The question: What are the two missing names?
The answer: On your left Trellewelyn Road, and on your right Colin Drive.

Scoring a win for every correct answer: The Great Gareth 5, Richard & Ceri Swinney 5, Dilys Bagnall 1, Jane Shuttle 4, Dorothy Jones 3, and Sue Handley 2.
Well done to the reader who got everything wrong but had a go anyway


With reference to Question 2 here are Pentre Bach adverts, one from Gareth Morris followed by one from Yours Truly:

At the time, Ocean Beach Fun Fair was being advertised as Pleasure Beach, and its location in West Parade was described incorrectly as Promenade. (The promenade is the walkway on other side of the road.)

Pentre Bach was an outdoor attraction. The photo below shows one of the village's many features, a water mill. 


Thursday, 16 July 2015


This post pulls together pairs of pictures that have not appeared here before. Firstly, the statue that now stands with its back to the sea in the Garden of Remembrance, is shown below in its two previous positions.

The colour card shows the statue where it was first erected, near the old Pavilion and facing the sea. This is postmarked 1918.

The other card shows the statue in its second home, just west of the pier and Amphitheatre, close to the top of High Street and again facing the sea. It is postmarked 1932.

Click on any image to see a bigger version.

Above: Botanical Gardens, Grange Road, Rhyl. The sepia card showing the 'entrance' is undated. The colour card is postmarked 1966.

Below: Gardens outside the Royal Floral Hall on eastern promenade. The black-and-white card is postmarked 1962. The colour card is undated:

The following shots were taken in 2013 by Yours Truly.

Firstly, P.A. (Percy) Thomas & Sons, 18 Wellington Road, not far from High Street. This shop is for sale but still open for business:

Marks & Spencer at 63 High Street, Rhyl, closed down in March 2013.
The premises are now occupied by Poundland.


SAT 18th JUL 2015 UPDATE: While we are thinking in pairs, how about these two images from Rhyl History Club showing men at work?

The first is a 1966 shot of demolition in High Street between Boots chemist and Marks & Spencer. Second is a 1955 shot of the Woolworth building being erected on corner of High Street and East Parade (now B&M): 

We think of the Woolworth/B&M building as being in High Street but its address is actually 1-7 East Parade.