Thursday, 20 July 2017




Here are some bus items to add to the strength transport pix in this blog. Above: the earliest form of bus, a coach and horses. This one is in Rhyl and ready to depart on a trip. The word TOURIST is just about visible on side of the coach. The image is from a card postmarked 1913.

Above: Brookes Brothers open-top white double decker outside the White Lion Hotel, High Street, Rhyl (where Jobcentre Plus is now).
On the front of the bus is an advert for E.B. Jones, grocers; on the side is advert for a Rhyl Pavilion show titled This Woman Business.

Below: Crimson Coaches vehicle near the Llanberis Pass. It is made by Vulcan of Southport. Crimson is one of the lesser known Rhyl firms, and the driver in this instance is 'Will Llanfair'.

Llanberis Pass


Above: Late 1930s snapshot of a Crosville Motor Services U8 that ran between High Street, Rhyl, and Sandy Cove in Kinmel Bay.

Below: Late 1950s probably. The double decker is near corner of High Street and West Parade, with Woolworth's (now B&M) on your left.

Crosville's 5000th bus, circa 1980 at Marine Lake end of Wellington Road, near an Esso petrol station and an Elf service station.


Sunday, 16 July 2017


St. Asaph Street

1) Last Sunday I posted the above photo. The question: Where was I standing?

The answer: St. Asaph Street.
Looking across the site on which the Grange Hotel once stood.


2a) The question: Where in Rhyl was the Hippodrome?
The answer: On the sands.
It was a later, fancier name name for the outdoor performance area known originally as the minstrel pitch. This advert for E.H. Williams' Merrie Men, written probably in 1904, refers.
Click on it to read small print.

Hippodrome, minstrel pitch


2b) The question: Where in Rhyl was Constantinople?
The answer: Queen's Palace.
Constantinople was the name of a new attraction that replaced 'Little Venice' which may have lost its novelty value and/or been a franchise whose time had expired. 
A previous post refers:

Now, let's see. You can award yourself one win for the correct answer to Question 1, two for 2a and two for 2b, plus an extra win if you got all of them right = a total of 6 wins.


  • The Marlborough Hotel, 16 East Parade, Rhyl, has been renamed The Braga Hotel. Tel: (01745) 353036.
  • Local radio station Point FM appears to have ceased trading. The Wellington Road premises no longer bears the station name.
  • Here is a summery snapshot of girls named Terry and Caroline having a tug o’war with unseen forces on Rhyl promenade in 1947. Holiday-makers or locals, I wonder.
Girls named Terry and Caroline

Colin Jones / email:


Sunday, 9 July 2017



This photo was taken last week by Yours Truly.
The question: Where was I standing?

Where in Rhyl was the Hippodrome?
Where in Rhyl was Constantinople?

No need to send me an email - just check your three answers against mine on Sunday 16th July 2017 after 12 noon.



Only one pub in North Wales has been given a ZERO rating by the Food Standards Agency – The Swan Inn aka Yr Alarch 13 Russell Road, Rhyl.
See story in Daily Post:


Wednesday, 5 July 2017


Recently the first photo below was on sale on Internet, hence the seller's logo. It shows Rhyl Pickwicks football / soccer team 1899-1900. Chances are, this was a team that played for charities  because the top-hatted gent on your right is E.H. Williams the leader of Rhyl's 'Merrie Men' minstrel troupe; he was involved in fundraising activities.

For indexing purposes the names above are repeated here.
Back row (left to right): E.D. Davies, B. Smith, F. Mudd, E.H. Williams.
Middle row: EL. Jones, J. Fell, Tom Moore, H.H. Davies, J. Brookes.
Front row: R. Salt, E. Nelson, R. Newing, T. Keene, T. Roberts.
Name of the original owner of the photo is given as John Nickels, 14 Vale Park, off Victoria Road, Rhyl.

The next item is captioned Rhyl Snooker Hall 1911. The location of the hall is not given. The group in the photo would be staff.

Here, a walking race in East Parade, Rhyl,  presumably dating from before World War 1:

The following shot of Rhyl Bowling Green, Seabank Road, is undated and looks like the work of Rhyl photographer Rae Pickard but I've no evidence that it was taken by him:

From 1947-48 here is a medallion inscribed for the Rhyl & District T.T.L (Table Tennis League) Youth Singles Winner. First mention of table tennis in this blog!

Wrestling is a Rhyl favourite and continues this summer at the town hall. Here are the centre pages from a programme of wrestling at Gaiety Theatre (formerly Pier Amphitheatre) on the prom, dated 1964.

For indexing purposes the names above are repeated here.
Wryton Wrestling, Count Bartelli, Alf Rough-house Cadman Bury, Ted Hannon Scotland, Frank Riley Wigan, Bert Royal Bolton, Vic Faulkner Bolton, Martin Conroy referee, Terry Nylands Rochdale, Dennis Wade St. Helens, Seamus Donlevy Ireland, Mike Donlevy Ireland, Francis Gregory, Reg Williams.
Master of Ceremonies is our very own, recently deceased, Roy Turner.

A seaside resort is not a place you would expect to find a Gunsmiths for field sports, but we have one in Elwy Street where until a few years ago the proprietor was the late Reg Gizzi (airman and ex-musician).
This photo was taken earlier in 2017. Last I heard, a few weeks ago, the business was up for sale.

gun shop

My YouTube channel featuring Rhyl videos and slideshows goes by the name of RhylTime. Click on the following link if you would like to see RhylTime's Top Ten:

Only YouTube items labelled RhylTime are mine.


Friday, 30 June 2017


Palace Hotel, 83-84 West Parade, Rhyl - bowl
Photo by Dave Williams

Audience figures have taken a dive this month. You have been out there surfing instead of in here surfingIn Rhyl the temperature pushed towards 30 degrees Centigrade for a few days, just a little too hot for Yours Truly. Rhyl's average temperature across the year is 13.4 degrees, ever so slightly warmer than Blackpool.

During June 2017, twelve older posts were updated:

Arthur Sutcliffe, pierrot –

Boer War volunteers –

Colwyn Bay Pier and Llandudno Pier –

General Election 2017 –

Holborn Restaurant/CafĂ© –

Kerfoot Hughes & Jones dispatch department –

Lyons Holiday Camp, more early pics –

Men’s Convalescent Home, Bedford Street –

New Foryd Bridge 1932 –

Towyn near Abergele / Wilcocks Camp –

Wood, Son & Co., Abbey Street –

Povey Boarding House, 42 West Parade, Rhyl - spoon
Photo by Dave Williams

Sunday, 25 June 2017


London-based publishers Raphael Tuck & Sons started producing picture postcards in 1900 and continued for more than half a century. The Tuck company lost a lot of its original material during World War 2 and merged with other companies in 1959.

The following are Rhyl examples of Tuck cards - Foryd harbour, the pier, Open Air Bathing Pool ('The Baths') and sandhills opposite East Parade. The photos would have been taken circa 1950.

From the same source and of a similar date are these shots of Palin's Ideal Holiday Camp, Towyn near Abergele:

The camp certainly looks a lot different now and has been renamed Palin's Holiday Park:



I was just the right age to get caught up in the idealistic youth culture of the 1960s. We wanted a world built on peace, friendship, mutual respect, understanding and sharing. We wanted an end to wars, an end to all kinds of discrimination and an end to poverty and deprivation.

We saw all that hijacked by commercialism and the drug culture, and gradually it collapsed into selfishness and self-indulgence in the 1980s.

Yesterday, watching on TV as Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn addressed a massive, cheering crowd at the Glastonbury Festival, I felt the old buzz of the ’sixties again.

Mr. Corbyn believes in building bridges and not walls – so do I.
He believes in human rights, peace, justice and democracy – so do I.
He believes that people should not live in poverty surrounded by riches – so do I.

He spoke against the trashing of our environment, and against racism, sexism, homophobia and Islamophobia, and he pointed to a decent, better world where everybody mattered.

You would find these sentiments embedded in Plaid Cymru, Scottish Nationalist and some other smaller parties but rarely in the governing Conservative Party. 

Jeremy Corbyn spoke of releasing the creativeness locked inside children and the yearning for change in young people, and - in a master stroke - he quoted the poet Shelley:

'Rise like lions after slumber
In unvanquishable number,
Shake your chains to earth like dew
Which in sleep had fallen on you,
Ye are many - they are few.'

Colin Jones / email:


Tuesday, 20 June 2017


This is a photo of Rhyl resident Eunice Parry taken last week by Yours Truly outside the entrance to United Church in Rhyl (originally Christ Church) in Water Street, where Rev. Paul Robinson is nurturing a new project.

The north side of the church and the adjacent building (formerly Citizens’ Advice Bureau) which is under church ownership, are undergoing transformation into The Ask Centre - of which Eunice will be Manager / Receptionist.

The Ask Centre is being created by money from the 'Community Facilities Programme' of Welsh Government. The centre will incorporate the Rhyl branch of Denbighshire Citizens’ Advice, plus community and social activities.

There will be a suite of six computers for free public use, a food bank that could provide 24 hoursworth of food in case of emergency, community meeting rooms for hire, and a community choir for an hour once a week.

Choir practice will be in the church. Not all songs are going to be religious and you don’t need to be a good singer to join in. Eunice will accompany at the piano.

Helping in the centre's management and admin are Rev. Robinson and Natasha Harper the Communities Facilitator. ”We hope the new centre will help to tackle poverty and deprivation among members of this community." says Eunice.

Grand Opening of The Ask Centre is on Saturday 1st July, 11am-3.30pm. Go along and see the project - you’ll be impressed! The centre is open to all enquirers from Monday 3rd onwards.
Tel: (01745) 337750, email:


Sunday, 18 June 2017



Kerfoot Hughes & Jones is one of those evocative Rhyl business names that I like so much. They were ironmongers mainly, and their shop was in Bodfor Street. The business card above states new premises, so this was not their first address. The card would be circa 1909.

The Kerfoot Hughes & Jones invoice below is addressed to Mrs. Stanley "Plas Coed" Dyserth Road and is dated 1931.
Click on it to see small print.

Having consulted my pal Dilys Bagnall, I can advise that the shop was on the northeast side of Bodfor Street. The location is shown in the following photo taken last month by Yours Truly standing outside Argos:

Mind shop, Goldilocks

There may be a connection between the ironmonger Kerfoot and the Rhuddlan street name Kerfoot Avenue. Can anybody confirm?

Colin Jones / email:


Another fondly remembered ironmongers was H. O. Davies, 28 Queen Street (known as Garth's). At the time of writing we have no ironmongers in Rhyl town centre – and no butchers.

The business card below, for long gone butchers I mean purveyors of meat Owens & Sons of 9 Water Street and 51a High Street, is likely to be from before World War 1.

These names are added here for indexing purposes: Mind charity shop, Goldilocks hairdressers.


FRI 23rd JUN 2017 UPDATE: Nigel Kerry has written from Clun – a lovely place in South Shropshire. Nigel says that in the 1950s his uncle Oswald Jones of Alpha Villa (now No.9) Elwy Street, Rhyl, worked in the dispatch department of Kerfoot Hughes & Jones.

[He adds that there is or was a few years ago a Kerfoots in Porthmadog, an imposing shop that was part ironmonger/ fancy goods etc. The proprietors told him that there was a link to the Rhyl business.]

Nigel says that, in Rhyl, Kerfoots’ dispatch department was in Windsor Street – probably where Salvation Army is now. That would it have made it parallel with the Bodfor Street shop with perhaps an alley between.

Here is a photo of the Sally Army premises taken today by Yours Truly:

The Blood and Fire emblem on the wall above the entrance never fails to catch my eye:


Sunday, 11 June 2017


On Wednesday 31st May 2017 I posted three images. The question: How many of the images are Rhyl pictures?
The answer: Two.

The first IS a Rhyl picture - the maritime scene shown below has its caption restored.

steam packet

Pleasure trips came and went from the far end of the pier and occasionally collided with the edifice. The steam packets 'St. Olaf' and 'The Fawn' did considerable damage to the pier and so did the schooner 'Lady Stewart' before them.
Fire and storm damage took their toll as well. Metal was taken from the far end for repairs so the pier grew shorter and shorter.

The second IS a Rhyl picture - Claude Lane tram in 1954 on miniature track at Marine Lake.

Marine Lake

You can read more about Mr. Lane's trams in Wikipedia:

The third IS NOT a Rhyl picture - it's a Kinmel Bay card postmarked 1959, shown below with caption restored.

  • If you got the right answer Two for the right reasons, count yourself a winner.
  • If you got the right answer for the wrong reasons, count yourself lucky.


Here at Jones Towers are quite a few pictures marked 'Maybe Rhyl', 'Possibly Rhyl', 'Probably Rhyl'. or simply 'Unknown'. Nothing is known about this one - a large group of males of various ages:

Wills Jones

The above is presumed to be a Rhyl picture because it is by photographer Wills Jones who, in that era of straw boater hats, operated from the Magnet Studio in High Street, Rhyl.

[The Magnet Studio was upstairs to your left of Boots chemist until Boots expanded and swallowed it.]

Click on any image to see a bigger version.

World War 2, World War Two, Second World War

The above is dated 1941 (during World War 2) and labelled 'Rhyl district'. There is no obvious pointer to why these people are being photographed together.
Standing in the back row (left to right): Don't know, Nellie Hall, Rosie Powell, ---- Whittaker, Elsie Woods, V. Gratton and Don't know.
Sitting in the front row (l to r): Kitty Harris, Rene Mac, Vera Whitworth, Don't know and Lottie Jones.

I am not 100 per cent convinced that the following is Rhyl but, if it is, we might be looking at businesses that were replaced by the long gone Regal Cinema which was in turn replaced by the retail building at 97 High Street recently vacated by the Co-op.

On your left in the picture is Pozzi's Restaurant & Tea Rooms at No.97. 

On your right is 'Ye Olde Britannia' Fish &  Chip Saloon, which may well have been the remnant of the Britannia Forge pub  - a hotbed of illegal gambling - originally the Britannia Inn.
On the other hand, the picture may not be Rhyl at all.
Hey ho.
Motor car enthusiasts may be able to guess the date.


In this Rhyl promenade pic, probably late 1950s, on your left is the Pier Amphitheatre ('The Amphi') and on your right is Prince's Water Phantasy at the Open Air Bathing Pool ('The Baths'). All well and good but what is the tall tower centre right?
Would it part of the illuminations perhaps?

Your thoughts on any of today's mysteries would be most welcome.

Colin Jones / email:

MON 12th JUN 2017 UPDATE: Of the first picture above, Robert Jones of Dyserth writes:
"The location of the men and boys is the old Merseyside Holiday Camp in Dyserth. The Allt y Graig railway bridge is at the top left, and the wall to the right going to Lady’s Wood is visible. 
The camp was sited on Lletty Mwyn (Place of Minerals), next to the Clive Engine; you can see undulating ground due to the mine waste.
There are lots of pictures of those tents from 1909 onwards, including soldiers in WW1, until wooden huts replaced them in the 1920s. 
The most interesting thing about the photo is the unusual mixture of the classes posing together."

Thank you, Robert!


Friday, 9 June 2017


Pennaf Clwyd Alyn

"There's nothing wrong with Rhyl, it's the people who live in it!" This is an opinion that I hear regularly.

Governments come and go, councils come and go, and yet difficulties in Rhyl West continue. The ward is still being targeted by resettlement agencies as a destination for addicts, offenders, misfits and problem families from other places – mainly (but by no means entirely) from the English cities.

Advantages of new green space in Aquarium Street area have been offset by the cramming in of new flats around it – guaranteeing that the density of population remains uncomfortably high. The photo above was taken a few days ago from my kitchen window showing a scene at the back of Pennaf/Clwyd Alyn flats in Wellington Road.

Pennaf/Clwyd Alyn has a big hand in the new flats, and owns the flats for the elderly where I live and masses of other properties in Rhyl and across North Wales, and is classified by Welsh Government as a ‘social landlord’.

Recently the company borrowed £250 million from the private sector. £160 million is to be used for repaying bank loans and other existing commitments. The remainder is for future developments.
See story in Daily Post:

THU 13th JUL 2017 UPDATE: When the photo above was posted, the yard was already scheduled for clearance. A day or two later it was indeed cleared but by yesterday looked like this:


Thursday, 1 June 2017


Rhyl Life says,
"Vote for Plaid Cymru - the party for everybody who lives in Wales."

Leanne Wood, leader of Plaid Cymru

FRI 9th JUN 2017 UPDATE: Plaid went into this General Election with three MPs and came out with four. Now in Wales our team of 40 MPs is comprised of 4 Plaid, 8 Con and 28 Lab. No Green Party, Independents, Lib Dems or UKIP.

Here in Vale of Clwyd constituency Chris Ruane (Lab) took back the seat from James Davies (Con). James needed more than his 2 years in the job to establish himself as MP.

I am not best pleased to see the return of Mr. Ruin. Perhaps somebody will take him aside and explain that Rhyl is first and foremost a holiday resort. He seemed only vaguely aware of the fact last time he was MP.

As for the Westminster Parliament, the Conservatives had a slender overall majority and now no party has an overall majority. Brexit should be put on the back burner for the time being – no one has the authority to negotiate on behalf of UK.

The most pleasing aspect of the election results is that the nasty campaign by the hate newspapers (Mail, Express, Sun) against Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, has backfired.


Wednesday, 31 May 2017


High Street, Rhyl (looking south from near Sussex Street)
card postmarked 1919

Thank you to the many readers who have been in touch this month about one thing or another, from horrible housing conditions to exceptionally hot weather.
My pal Jill and I took a day trip to Llandudno and your blogger came away preferring Rhyl which is more compact (less walking to do) and better value for money.
If you knew what we paid in Llandudno for two teas and ice creams you might just faint.


During May 2017, fourteen older posts were updated:

Boer War Memorial -

Church Army pilgrimages -

Circus at Pavilion 1958 -

Gilbert Rogers and his Jovial Jesters -

HMS Rhyl -

Lifeboat Caroline Richardson II -

Marine Lake early description -

North Wales "Pals" (WW1) -

Pentre Bach Model Village -

Princes Street 1953, identification -

Rhyl Amateur Swimming Club, identification -

Rotor fun fair ride / Gravitron -

Royal Hotel, High Street -

Talbot's shop, High Street -


Colin Jones / email:



The question: How many of these three images are Rhyl pictures?

No need to send me an email - just check your answer against mine on Sunday 11th June 2017 after 12 noon.



The annual list of best beaches (Blue Flag status) is available. More than forty are in in Wales, including Llandudno's West Shore, Colwyn Bay and Prestatyn Central but NOT RHYL. Ask your elected representatives why NOT RHYL.