Thursday, 21 September 2017


The above appeared as a 2-page spread in Rhyl's tourist guide book 1959. The advert was out-of-date by then.
The question: How might you have known the advert was out of date?

Click on the image to see a bigger version.

No need to send me an email - just check your answers against mine on Sunday 1st October 2017 after 12 noon.


Recently a row broke out between Welsh Assembly member Neil McEvoy and his Plaid Cymru colleagues over the question of whether tenants of social housing properties (council and housing association) should be allowed - under certain conditions - to buy their homes as is the case in England.

Mr. McEvoy believes that tenants should have that right, but Plaid is ganging up with the Labour Party to bring an end to the right to buy in Wales because it reduces the social housing stock.
[Reducing would be welcome in places such as Rhyl West where we have too many Pennaf/Clwyd Alyn Housing Association properties.]

Private landlords can pitch their properties down or up market according to demand, but General Purposes social housing remains only for the comparatively deprived. Therefore it keeps poorer communities from being anything other than poor.
[That suits the Labour Party because tenants of social housing, if they vote at all, are most likely to vote Labour.]

I have been the tenant of a Pennaf/Clwyd Alyn Housing Association flat for 16 years and would not wish to own it under any circumstances - wouldn't even want it as a gift - but I don’t believe there should be a law to prevent others from buying theirs.

Those of us in Wales who voted to have our own government did not expect that twenty years later we would have one ready to pass a law that left us with fewer legal rights than people who happen to live in England.
Welsh Assembly members need to tread carefully here.


Sunday, 17 September 2017


Last Sunday I posted this photo of a slice of Rhyl townscape. The question: What might you have found here in the 1960s?

The answer is a hotel.
The photo shows corner of Kinmel Street and Elwy Street where Mrs. B.C. Black presided over 'The Central' hotel/guest house/B&B. Her description of the place as being two minutes from the prom and sea might have been a tad optimistic - but that's how landladies tended to be.

[Grammatical note – I tend to write ‘a hotel’ rather than the more correct ‘an hotel’ because the latter now seems archaic. For the same reason I write ‘will’ where ‘’shall’ would be appropriate. Learn the rules then ride roughshod over them, that’s my motto.]

That rounded corner is rather nice. It helps to compensate a little for the angular inelegance of the new-ish medical centre nearby:

Like many small towns in Wales, Rhyl is a remarkably inelegant place. Perhaps this is because - as a poor nation - we can afford only the cheapest and nastiest architects.
Rhyl has also become very prosaic; if you have any poetry in your soul Rhyl would kill it stone dead.

The town is sinking under the weight of people who arrive here already deprived and lacking in spending power.
The latest big name retailer to announce closure of their Rhyl branch is Dorothy Perkins/Burton whose High Street premises are due to close in January 2018.

Top floor of the building in the 1950s & '60s was the Regent Ballroom. Click here if you wish to read previous posts about this:



Of the above, the late Les Slee of Molineaux Road, Rhyl, said: "This is a picture of Military College of Science (later RAMTS) Group 37A taken in Rhyl in September 1941 after the passing-out parade following completion of apprenticeships. I am on the right-hand end in the middle row. One of the officers in charge was Colonel A. T. 'Goldie' Gardner who was a test driver for MG cars. He had only one arm.
     "These boys went all round the world as Artificers reparing motor vehicles, instruments and guns, and some never came back alive. Quite a few of us (including me) got married to Rhyl girls and settled happily here."

In the photo below, Mr. P.T. (Phil) Trehearn is shown far right in fundraising mode. As President of Rhyl Individual Traders' Association (RITA) he started a war comforts fund and organised the local British Red Cross Penny-a-Week Fund. Mr. Trehearn became a member of Rhyl Urban District Council during the war. Photo supplied by Peter Trehearn.

Click on any image to see a bigger version.

The image above was supplied by Eric Hughes whose wife Doreen commented as follows:
"At Marine Lake Fun Fair my father, the engineer Albert Barnes was resident director. When the war began I was only 13. The fairground was open as usual on summer evenings and I used to help out there. My father's workshops in Westbourne Avenue were requisitioned by the Army. He experimented with apparatus to be fixed on the front of tanks to explode land mines.
     "The picture above shows an example of a rolling device. In the background is a government inspector. The outcome of the experiments was a device involving flailing chains, which was actually used by the military."

The image below was supplied years ago by Mr. Joe Cooper of Prestatyn. It shows 'C' Company Home Guard GPO Rhyl (that's right, Dad's Army) with a serious gun known as the Northover Projector.

All four images so far are from the book 'Rhyl In The Second World War' by Yours Truly which was published in 2003 and may be available from local libraries.

The one below, showing 'F' Company Home Guard Rhyl, came to hand too late to be included in the book.

Further information on all of these matters would be welcome. 

Colin Jones / email:

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


Sunday, 10 September 2017


Below is a slice of Rhyl townscape photographed today by Yours Truly.

The question: What might you have found here in the 1960s?

No need to send me an email - just check your answers against mine on Sunday 17th September 2017 after 12 noon.


These days  Tir Prince Raceway in Towyn near Abergele is the place for trotting races but the 1967 advert below harks back to similar events at Prestatyn Raceway.
Click on it to read the small print.

Night Trotting, eh?  We have that in Rhyl West – it's the druggies on a mission to pick up more stuff.



Yesterday in London thousands of people marched in protest against the British government's plan to leave European Union. I am not surprised. Our European citizenship is too valuable to throw away.

If any future British government tried to interfere with workers' rights, consumers' rights and other protections conferred on us by the EU, we could see civil unrest on a massive scale.

We are not Americans, we are not Chinese, we are Europeans –  and now that barriers between European countries are down they must stay down.


Thursday, 7 September 2017


On 31st August a recent photo appeared with a place name blanked out.
The question: What is the missing name?
The answer: Llys Catrin.
Here is the original photo. Click on it to see the restored name.

Welmar Estate
Also a badge was posted from a campaign by The Visitor newspaper.
The question: What was the campaign about?
The answer: Point Of Ayr Colliery.
Here is the badge with the message restored.

The campaign was part of a struggle to keep Point Of Ayr Colliery in use before its eventual closure in 1996.
You can read about the colliery and Point of Ayr in general in Wikipedia:



George Ellis of Colwyn Bay found a reference to the Country Club in Rhyl and wondered where it is/was.
It stood on the corner of Rhuddlan Road and Ffordd Derwen on the site of the present Ffordd Derwen pub. This advert is from Rhyl Urban District Council's tourist guide book of 1948.

In the advert are intriguing references to Ralph "Muffit" Moffat of radio station AFN (American Forces' Network) in Munich and a brochure about High fidelity recordings - Made in your own home . . .

Click on any image to see a bigger version.

In the same guide are details of the council's coupon system in which their coupons were worth twice their face value  even in car parks!

voucher scheme


Thursday, 31 August 2017


During the summer months visits to this blog fell by a third compared with the previous winter. Even so, the total number of pageviews now exceeds half a million. Last time I looked, the figure was  500,829.

During August 2017, these old posts were updated:

Albert Cronshaw / Cronkshaw -

Diane Heirene (2 updates) -

Garden of Remembrance -

Kinmel Hall's Chinese Hall -

RAOB (‘The Buffs’) -

Rhyl Amateur Swimming Club -

Rhyl Rollers skating team -

Winkup’s Camp -

World War 1 / Kinmel Park Camp -


North Hoyle (2003) - £80 million
Rhyl Flats (2009) - £198 million
Gwynt y Môr (2015) - 2700 million

Colin Jones / email:

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