Sunday, 29 January 2017


Background right  - Grand Pavilion at shore end of the pier, circa 1896

Work continues on tagging the thousands of pictures in this blog to make them easier to find via search engines. Many will have to be re-tagged because I changed my approach to tagging two-thirds of the way through. No leave me alone, it's an illness.

Readership remains buoyant. The all-time number of pageviews now exceeds 436,000 and the number from USA is now running routinely at twice that of UK. There is strong interest from Germany, Russia, France and Australia.

During January 2017, ten old posts were updated. They are as follows:

Bamforth cards -

Botanical Gardens -

Dyserth -

Eisteddfod 1904 -

Le Nautique coffee bar -

Promenade extension 1951 -

Rhyl Social Club football team -

Swan Inn -

The 1970s -

Wm. & John Jones Convalescent Home -



Here is a multiview card of beach scenes, donkeys and paddlers and all. The card was posted in 1936 from Grand Mar & Par in Rhyl to Master Albert in Leicester.

Colin Jones / email:

See my Rhyl videos on YouTube:
Only the videos marked RhylTime are mine!



No Human Being Is Illegal

The placard, ‘No human being is illegal’ refers to US President Trump’s proposed wall to keep out Mexicans.

Very large chunks of the southern US (including five complete states) used to be part of Mexico anyway. Previous attempts to seal the border have proved to be more expensive than letting Mexicans in.

A recent visit to US by UK Prime Minister Theresa May put the two leaders on hand-holding terms. Mrs. May is driving the Brexit process that could take us out of the European Union and put an end to decades of peace, prosperity and stability.

Only the Labour Party, by joining forces with smaller parties, could stop the Brexit bandwagon – but Labour leader Mr. Corbyn (a fine man in many ways) appears to be saying, Leaving the EU is a bad idea but we support it.



Wednesday, 25 January 2017


On Tuesday 17th January 2017 I posted this picture which dates from 1960s/early '70s. In the background, on the inside of the sea wall, is a large notice beginning PERSONS LEAVING BOTTLES . . .

The question: What does the complete notice say?

The notice was repeated further westwards near top of John Street as shown below:

If you were word perfect you could award yourself a win.

The black-and-white image dates from about a decade before the colour pic. It is from Bill Ellis' book 'The Spirit Of Rhyl'. I am pleased to report that Bill is in reasonably fine fettle and still making lunchtime pilgrimages to Sidoli's ice cream parlour.



Robert Scott has popped up again. This time he says, "I am quite anxious to find a photo of the Bryntirion Farm buildings, once occupied by Mr & Mrs Arthur E. Roberts of the William Roberts Ltd family from about 1915 until 1926.
"It was also known later as Finnegan’s Gardens, between Highfield Park and the railway. This was within an area now bounded by Highfield Park, St. Georges Crescent (part) and Parc Esmor (part) also including Clos Gladstone and Cae Uchaf.
 "If any of your Readers has, or can guide me to, a photo/drawing of the property I would be most appreciative."

If you can help with this please drop a line to Robert Scott via Yours Truly.
Colin Jones / email:


Sunday, 22 January 2017


President Donald Trump of the United States is said to be upset about photos of anti-Trump demonstrations appearing in the media. Oh dear, how sad, never mind.

Trump Is A Fascist Pig

Women in particular seem incensed that his electoral opponent Hillary Clinton won nearly three million more votes than him but - because of the way the system works - she lost.

Not My President

We Build Walls

Mr. Trump is a whopping egotist and is bigoted against different opinions. Ten months ago in this blog I described him as seriously weird and unstable.

Without Immigrants Trump Would Have No Wives

Nevertheless, our desperate government ministers seem keen to sup with him if and when the UK leaves EU. I hope they remember to use long spoons  and count them afterwards.



Next Wednesday (25th Jan) is St. Dwynwen's Day. To put you in romantic and sentimental mood here is Forget-Me-Not, A Soldier's Verse-Letter sent from Ernest at Kinmel Park Camp around a hundred years ago:

World War 1, World War One, First World War, The Great War

Awww, I hope Ernest survived.


Tuesday, 17 January 2017


A little teaser to keep you amused. Below is a 1960s/early '70s postcard of donkeys, riders and hangers-on. Love the little white handbag.

In the background, on the inside of the sea wall, is a large notice beginning PERSONS LEAVING BOTTLES . . .
The question: What does the complete notice say?
You have to be word perfect, mind!

No need to send me an email - just check your answer against mine to be published in this blog on Wednesday 25th January 2017 around 12 noon.



These photos from The Journal take us back to 1989 and the fledgling Rhyl Adventure Playground in Marsh Road at the time.

In the lower picture, with the children is play worker Tony Chilton. Handing over a donation is Clwyd County Councillor Ray Formstone, next to him is Denise Roebuck (a council officer), and on the receiving end is Dawn Simcock of Rhyl Community Agency.

Dawn, a jolly nice woman whom I remember well, has been living for quite a few years in the United States and raising a family there. Dawn if you are reading this, your ex-colleague James Harrison would like to get in touch. You could reach James via Yours Truly:

Colin Jones / email:


The following post titled SHE'S GOT A HOPE was published originally on TUESDAY, 17 JANUARY 2017 and then disappeared MARCH 2017, so this is a restoration:


Earlier today Prime Minister Theresa May delivered a speech on the UK’s proposed withdrawal from the European Union. The speech glossed over the fact that more than 48 per cent of voters in the EU referendum had actually voted to Remain.

Around here many who voted Leave did so out of ignorance and spite. To take an extreme example, I spoke to a chap in Wellington Market, Rhyl, who said he had voted Leave because he didn’t like the ‘bedroom tax’.

Mrs. May and her advisers have somehow interpreted the referendum result as yearning by voters for a more global and internationalist Britain. Dear me, the racist and xenophobic comments by Leavites indicated exactly the opposite.

Mrs. May’s government wants have its cake and eat it, for instance by leaving the EU single market while continuing to trade with it on a tariff-free basis. I don’t know why other EU member states should agree to that.

Losing access to the single market would hit Wales especially hard. As Plaid Cymru pointed out in a recent bulletin: We have the highest proportion of exports going to the EU of any UK nation.

Jill Evans MEP and Plaid Cymru's other representatives are battling to defend our interests.


Sunday, 15 January 2017


On Tuesday 3rd January I posted eight Rhyl questions to get your brainbox working after the Christmas/New Year break.

Question 1 was about a photo of the trough/fountain on the promenade. The question: What is hidden behind the red dots?
The answer: 1963.
Here is the photo without dots. The inscription in full reads: "Presented by Mrs William Jenkins Birmingham 1963."

Question 2 was based on a 1950 photo of Rhyl councillors and staff.
The question: What is the occasion?
The answer:Routine visit to/inspection of Rhyl Waterworks.
Many familiar faces here. Easily discernible sitting in front row, 2nd from left with hat on knees, is Coun P.T. Trehearn. In the first row of standing figures, 3rd from right is Coun Glyn Vaughan.

P.T. Trehearn

Question 3 concerned a recent shot showing part of a block of flats.
The question: What is the English name of the building?
The answer: New Horizon.
The block is usually known by its Welsh name Gorwel Newydd; it is on corner of West Parade and Butterton Road.

Question 4. In this image of a religious gathering, what was the nearest theatre?

The answer: Rhyl Pavilion.
The clue in the far background is the white statue of an unknown soldier in Boer War campaign dress, facing the sea.
The gathering is most likely to be the annual Children's Mission c.1890. The event comprised meetings, preachings and processions.

In its two subsequent positions along the prom the statue has faced the opposite way. Incidentally, the designer/sculptor was Herbert Chatham who created the Boer War figure that stands in the shopping centre at Winsford, Cheshire.

Question 5. Here is a flyer for Celebrity's night club. In what hotel was Celebrity's?

Marina Hotel

The answer: Marina Hotel
I have a note saying that the hotel was closed following a police raid in 2012. Not long afterwards the hotel was converted to flats (Marina Apartments).

Question 6. Below: pomp and ceremony draws a crowd. Where were they standing?

The answer: Rhyl Railway Station.
The event is a visit in 1920 by The Prince Arthur, 1st Duke of Connaught & Strathearn (1850–1942) representing the monarch at the time, George V.
At first glance I thought that would be the far left of the station building but a photo I took a few days ago says no - it doesn't match:

Question 7. This building's name is hidden by a cluster of black dots. What is it?
The answer: Rhyl Bowling Club.
The building is in Seabank Road. Here is the picture without dots:

Seabank Road

Question 8. The following roofs (rooves if you like) are where?

The answer: Marine Holiday Park aka Marine Caravan Park,
The business is located in Cefndy Road opposite Rhyl College and is owned by Hoseasons.

So, how many did you get right out of eight?
Six or more = splendid.
Four or five = OK.
Less than four = Go and stand in the corner!


SUN 4th FEB 2018 UPDATE: Regarding the visit by the Duke of Connaught & Strathearn, the date was 1920 and the location was indeed Rhyl Railway Station. The Duke had been in St. Asaph attending the enthronement of the Bishop of St. Asaph as first Archbishop of Wales.

The Duke's appearance in Rhyl was brief and took place on a temporary stage outside the railway station in front of a large crowd. This was caught on film by the Shannon Brothers, new owners of the Market Street cinema once operated by Arthur Cheetham.


Sunday, 8 January 2017


Blessed are the peace makers and not the war makers. The image above is captioned Denbighshire T.Y. RHYL 1912 "Church Parade". Abbreviation T.Y. may stand for Territorial Youth. On the other hand, it may not.
Click on any image to see a bigger version.

The Rhyl district, a comparatively safe place, has been ideal for military training camps. Here is a picture captioned The Lancashire Hussars Camp at Rhyl 1909:

The following is Western Signal Camp, Royal Engineers Camp at RHYL 1913 (the year before The Great War aka World War 1 began):

Below: Taking a break at Denbighshire Hussars Camp Rhyl 1914.

World War 1, World War One, First World War, The Great War

Recently the next item was for sale on Internet, hence the seller's logo. The accompanying description said DRUM MAJOR PALMER 1st RHONDDA BATT WELSH REGIMENT BAND POSE RHYL 1914:

World War 1, World War One, First World War, The Great War

The letters R.B.B. above must stand for Rhondda Battalion Band. I wonder why soldiers from South Wales were up here.

The next was taken at Kinmel Park Camp, Bodelwyddan, in 1916 by which time the war was half over. It is in the form of a postcard addressed to John Evans Esq of Kensington, Liverpool. 

World War 1, World War One, First World War, The Great War

The postcard bears the following message on the reverse: "Waiting for a word from you. I have blood poison in my right hand & be home very soon. Your friend, Dick."

The card below reflects the toxic combination of patriotism and emotional blackmail that led an estimated 744,000 young Britons to their deaths in that dreadful conflict.

For more statistics about the extent of casualties see Wikipedia:

Recommended film: Oh! What A Lovely War (1969) directed by Richard Attenborough, from an epic stage musical created by Joan Littlewood's ensemble at Stratford, London, in 1963.

film movie
World War 1, World War One, First World War, The Great War

Colin Jones / email:

THU 23rd NOV 2017 UPDATE: A dramatic shot of Denbighshire T.Y. galloping on the sands near their Rhyl camp in 1912:


Tuesday, 3 January 2017


Here are eight Rhyl questions - not too difficult I hope - to help put your brain back in working order after the Christmas break.

1. In this photo of the trough/fountain on the promenade, what is hidden behind the red dots?

2. In this 1950 photo of Rhyl councillors and staff, what is the occasion?

3. This recent shot shows part of a block of flats. What is the English name of the building?

4. In this image of a religious gathering, what was the nearest theatre?

5. Here is a flyer for Celebrity's night club. In what hotel was Celebrity's?

6. Below: pomp and ceremony draws a crowd. Where were they standing?

7. This building's name is hidden by a cluster of black dots. What is it?

8. The following roofs (rooves if you like) are where?

Those are the questions. No need to send me an email - just check your answers against mine to be published in this blog on Sunday 15th January 2017 around 12 noon.


It was a quiet enough Christmas and New Year here at Jones Towers. No doubt there was traditional rowdyism, drunkenness and brawling elsewhere in Rhyl.
Daily Post has published North Wales Police statistics regarding alcohol-fuelled violence outside licensed premises during a three-year period up to March last year.
These included Rhyl venues: Ellis' Vaults, Water Street (37 violent incidents); The Barrel, Water Street (22); The Bodfor, Bodfor Street (17).
Surely these places should not be allowed to renew their licences and carry on in business unless they make serious efforts to attract a more civilised clientele.
Read complete story in Daily Post: