The Circus comes to Town: The Iron Circus on Penarth Road, 1890

On 28 February 1889, the South Wales Daily News carried a report headed ‘Interesting Sale’. The newspaper described a grand sale of circus equipment in Cardiff belonging to Mr J Tayleure, the famous circus impresario. Tayleure, with his business partner, Hutchinson, had run city centre circuses in Cardiff initially on St Mary Street and, from 1876, on Westgate Street. Tayleure was planning to retire and the sale probably marked the end of the Westgate Street circus, built on land owned by the Bute family that was earmarked as a suitable plot for a new post office building [South Wales Daily News, 28 February 1889].

One of those bidding that day was Tayleure’s son, David, who acquired a large circus tent for £70. In the following years David Tayleure carried on the family business as a travelling circus, possibly in recognition that the cost of a permanent site in a booming town centre no longer produced a reasonable return. However, the paper also reported that a Mr J Sanger was present at the sale. John Sanger was the head of a large and well known circus family based in London, John Sanger and Sons, famous for lavish circus productions that toured the country. It is just possible that Sanger, having noted the demise of the Westgate Street circus, saw an opportunity. In the following year, 1890, he submitted plans to the Cardiff Borough Surveyor for a circus to be built in the town centre on Penarth Road, on land used today as the car park for Cardiff Central Station.

The plans for this circus are held at the Glamorgan Archives along with a letter from the firm charged with its design and construction (ref.: BC/S/1/7869).

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They show a circus on a scale never before seen in the city. It is a breath taking design on a number of fronts. Whereas the Westgate Street Circus had stunned the public with an arena that could accommodate up to 2000, the Penarth Road circus had seating for up to 4500. To facilitate this it used a completely new design, abandoning wood in favour of corrugated iron. Sanger had hired a company from Nottingham, Thomas Woodhouse, to undertake the design and construction. The company’s letter to the Cardiff Borough Surveyor contained references from 5 local authorities confirming the quality of their work and supporting the claim that they had built over 40 such structures in recent years.

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The plans show an unremarkable rectangular building, 124ft by 131ft. As always the luxury and style was reserved for the interior dominated by the traditional circus format. The 44ft ring was marginally larger than usual, allowing Sanger to claim that it was the biggest ever seen in Wales. A central cupola some 50 feet above the centre of the ring provided light and ventilation for an array of banked seating, including boxes, stalls, a pit, a gallery and a promenade. Beneath the seating there were separate dressing rooms for the artistes, a wardrobe department and offices. The circus was to be lit by 4 large chandeliers each with 32 gas burners, with further arched lights running around the arena. There were clearly concerns surrounding safety and much was made of the woodwork being covered with an inflammable paint and provision for multiple exits. In case of fire it was estimated that the arena could be cleared in less than two minutes. Clearly no expense was to be spared on facilities for both the staff and public. However, in one area there was a major departure from the structures used for the Westgate Street Circus. Hutchinson and Tayleure’s circuses had followed the traditional formula of equestrian acts interspersed with acrobats, gymnasts and clowns. The design for the Penarth Road Circus, however, while accommodating a large area for stabling of horses, also made provision for a menagerie. The circus had moved on with the introduction of exotic and wild animals and Sanger and others were increasingly using lions, bears and elephants as the centre piece of the circus.

It is testimony to the skills and enterprise of the designers and builders that the plans were submitted on 7 October and approved on 23 October 1890. In less than 5 weeks the building was complete and Sanger’s Royal Circus and Menagerie was open for business. The Western Mail reported on 28 November 1890:

For some weeks past a considerable body of workmen have been employed night and day in erecting a huge circus or hippodrome on the Penarth Road, Cardiff….With regard to the adornments, something may also be said. They consist of innumerable shields, flags bannerets and other devices representative of every nation. This work has been carried out by Mr Dominic Hand the well known London art worker.

The menagerie is situated on the west side of the circus, and it is a beautifully lighted building, 80ft long by 40ft wide with accommodation for six dens of beasts, ten elephants, six or eight camels, dromedaries, llamas, yaks, beside “side shows” in the shape of illusions, freaks of nature &c….The whole of the artistes engaged, as well as the elephants, camels, carnivores and stud will be conveyed from London by three special trains….

As noted in the in the Western Mail, the circus opened on 1 December to a packed auditorium and was …undoubtedly one of the best circus performances seen in Cardiff”.

Messrs Sanger have an excellent stud of horses, including some well known thoroughbreds, a good zoological collection, a fine troupe of educated elephants and a staff of clever artistes. Just to mention a few items in the programme, Tarro, the Japanese wire and rope walker performs some marvellous feats. Miss Lavina Sanger introduces a fine horse “Black Eagle” in a unique performance and the Romah troupe of horizontal bar performers are very good gymnasts. Lieutenant Hartley exhibits his troupe of trained elephants which appeared at Sandringham on the occasion of the coming of age of His Royal Highness, Prince Albert Victor. The programme is replete with equestrienne, bicycle acrobatic and jockey performances. The circus is open each evening and on Wednesday and Saturday afternoons.

Although off to a good start Sanger had a further surprise for the Christmas period. The builders had been asked to accommodate a last minute change in the construction. Using a design drawn together by a Cardiff man, Charles Elms, provision had been made for the arena to be flooded to a depth of 2 to 3 feet with 40,000 gallons of water. It was planned that the Christmas performance could incorporate a ‘nautical pantomime’ styled on a set first seen at the Paris Hippodrome.

…the arena is filled with water forming a, by no means, miniature lake, dotted with islands, spanned by bridges and with boats, canoes and a steam launch, each with a freight of pleasure seekers floating thereon….This has been seen and enjoyed by thousands; many more thousands will see and enjoy it, too, for the whole thing is so excruciatingly funny that is it bound to have a long run [Western Mail, 31 December 1891]

Those who saw the Christmas show would have witnessed a performance that, in addition to the Pantomime, included horses, bears, lions and elephants with a supporting cast of acrobats, gymnasts and clowns. Ticket prices ranged from 1 shilling and six pence to 3 shillings. However not all of the performances went to plan. The water was heated by a network steams pipes that failed one night. As noted the next day, the performers showed …a good deal of pluck in entering the cold water [South Wales Echo, 30 December 1891]. No doubt the Pantomime was also enjoyed by the school children from Ely who were provided with free tickets for a Wednesday afternoon performance.

At the conclusion of the performance, which was hugely enjoyed, the youngsters were treated to buns and oranges. They were conveyed to and fro by brake [South Wales Daily Echo, 22 January 1891]

In the following month the circus continued to attract large audiences as Sanger regularly refreshed the acts. In February the centrepiece was ‘The War in Zululand’ …employing over 200 men and horses and assisted by a detachment of the 41st Regimental District. This led to an odd exchange in the newspapers. Striking dock workers, seeing soldiers being moved around the city centre, assumed that it was an attempt to break the strike. Subsequently it was explained that the soldiers were simply being transported to a performance at the circus [South Wales Echo, 10 February 1891]. The circus was also not without a near tragedy. It was reported, on 20 December, that a circus keeper had been taken to the Infirmary with severe bruising after being woken by an elephant pulling him from his bed [Cardiff Times, 20 December 1890].

Yet despite its popularity, anyone visiting the site on Penarth Road just months later in April 1891 would have found it deserted with the circus having departed, the building dismantled and many of the remaining fittings advertised for sale. As the letter in Glamorgan Archives from Thomas Woodhouse confirmed, it had been a condition of the approval of the plans that the circus be dismantled and removed by 31 March 1891. To an extent, this followed the traditional format, with the provision of a city centre circus during the winter months and a touring circus in the summer. However, the circus plans held at Glamorgan Archives end at this point.

It is likely the Penarth Road Iron Circus was the last town centre circus to be built in Cardiff. No doubt land in the centre of Cardiff was at premium and suitable plots for a permanent circus were, therefore, difficult to find. While Tayleure and Hutchinson in 1870 had only faced competition from one town centre theatre, Sanger would have operated side by side with the Philharmonic, The Theatre Royal, The Empire and the Grand Theatre. In addition, there was a suggestion that attendances fell away in February and March as a lengthy strike by docks workers resulted in many families being unable to afford a circus visit.

It seems that the costs of a purpose built circus for a limited winter period were simply too high. Despite the demise in Cardiff of the city centre circus, the circus itself was very much alive and well. The scale of several of the town centre halls and theatres was such that they could be used to provide a circus. For example, St Andrews’ Hall on Queen Street hosted a series of circus seasons in the first decade of the new century, provided by the Royal Italian Circus. However, for most people the circus was increasingly associated with the big top.  Sanger’s and many other circus companies continued to visit Cardiff, but using bigger and better big tops, often pitched on Sophia Gardens.

Tony Peters, Glamorgan Archives Volunteer

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The Circus comes to Town: The New Hippodrome at Cardiff, Westgate Street, 1876

By 1876 Cardiff was a busy, bustling and prosperous town. As a result of the boom in commerce and employment driven by the coal, iron and shipping industries the town had seen its population increase rapidly. As Christmas approached families were looking forward to the usual festivities and entertainments. The reports in the Western Mail suggested that they would not be disappointed with ‘The Grand Christmas pantomime of Dick Wittington and his Cat’ at the Theatre Royal and Signor Boz, conjuror, performing at the Stuart Hall. Yet the most sought after ticket in town on Boxing Night was for the Westgate Street Circus. Alongside the usual array of circus acts, Messrs Hutchinson and Tayleure promised a dramatic and spectacular re-enactment of St George and the Dragon. The Western Mail reported on 27 December 1876:

The Circus at Cardiff was crowded to overflowing in every part on Boxing Night for which occasion the proprietors Messrs Hutchinson and Tayleure had prepared a splendid programme.

The principal portion of the evening’s performance was, however, the enactment of the old story of “St George and the Dragon” which was produced on a greater scale of splendour than on any previous occasion. The dresses were exceedingly brilliant and costly and the whole performance was greatly admired. The “make up” of the Dragon was wonderfully good and created roars of laughter. The circus was nicely decorated with wreaths of coloured muslin which had a very pretty effect.  

Hutchinson and Tayleure were out to make their mark, for the Westgate Street Circus was a new and extravagant venture that had only opened the previous month. From 1870 to 1875 Hutchinson and Tayleure had run a ‘Circus and Grand Palace of Variety’ on St Mary Street. The venture had been an enormous success and crowds had flocked to see the performances provided by acrobats and clowns alongside displays of horse riding. By the winter of 1875 the newspapers were reporting that hundreds of people were being turned away each night due to the circus being full to capacity.

On the back of their initial success Hutchinson and Tayleure decided to build a new circus on a scale never before seen outside of London. The records at Glamorgan Archives contain plans submitted in June 1876 and approved in July for a building on land leased from the Marquis of Bute on the corner of Westgate Street and Park Street and, at that time, part of Cardiff Arms Park (ref.: BC/S/1/90507).

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The design by local architect J P Jones was, as with the St Mary Street circus, based on a wooden building. However, whereas the St Mary Street circus had been shoe-horned on to a rectangular piece of waste land, there was scope on Cardiff Arms Park to construct an octagonal building with a central cupola. If, however, the exterior was still relatively plain no expense was spared with the design and furnishing of the interior, with Jones taking as his template the interior of the Grand Cirque Imperatrice on the Champs Elysees, Paris. Work on the new building was quickly set in motion to ensure that it was ready for the circus season in November. It must have been quite a challenge but, on 14 October 1876, the Cardiff Times reported that work was all but complete on the new arena with seats for 2000 people:

The decorations of the building are of a costly character and bear a close resemblance to those of the grand Paris cirque. The prevailing tint is maroon. The stall seats are upholstered with maroon coloured velvet, the floor being covered with Brussels carpet of similar colour and of elegant design. The massive pillars supporting the roof are of the same colour, the sides being embellished with large oval mirrors in gold frames. Statues of various kinds support the canopy over the promenade and trophies formed with the flags of all nations surmount it. The roof internally is covered with 8,000 square feet of French glazed calico, extending alternately from a small circle in the centre, and expanding gradually, like the upper portion of a balloon, until the whole dome is covered by it. The interior of the building is principally lighted by a large gas chandelier, composed of hundreds of jets of lights. The seats in the pit are neatly covered and every effort had been made to ensure their comfort of those who attend. The brilliant appearance of the interior when lighted by gas far surpasses anything of the kind ever seen in Cardiff; and the building is larger and more elaborate than any other equestrian establishment out of London.      

The focus of the circus was still primarily equestrian acts, and the new Circus boasted stables for up to 40 horses along with an array of changing rooms for the circus performers. The plans show that the main entrance was on the corner of Westgate Street and Park Street, although a smaller side entrance on Westgate Street gave access to the gallery. Alongside the extravagance of the decorations attention had also been given to the facilities provided for customers, with toilet blocks connected to the main sewers on Westgate Street and Park Street.

The new circus opened its doors on the evening of 6 November 1876. The South Wales Daily Echo reported that the auditorium was full to capacity an hour before the commencement time with an audience that had come to see the performance and the magnificent new building.  They were clearly not disappointed on either count:

The performance commenced by an equestrian representation of a sailor in a storm at sea, which was given with great skill and dexterity by Mr Wells. The daring feats of the Brothers Etherdo with a long pole followed, these being succeeded by the “Poses Gracieux” by Miss Johnson, a graceful and athletic equestrienne. Mr Morelli, the “musical momus” gave a series of performances on the concertina which elicited rounds of enthusiastic applause… [South Wales Daily Echo, 7 November 1876]

Not everything, however, went to plan. As with the St Mary Street Circus the first night was almost marred by a tragedy when Miss Laura fell from her horse while jumping through a series of hoops. Fortunately, She sprang up without a moment’s hesitation …and despite the remonstrances of the men in charge of the ring, resumed her place on the back of steed and carried out her performance to a successful conclusion.  The evening had been a triumph and the newspaper concluded:

Messrs Hutchinson and Tayleure have brought together a collection of professional talent so superior and so varied as to well merit a further continuance of that liberal support which their circus has ever received from the Cardiff public [South Wales Daily Echo, 7 November 1876]

The venture would have been an enormous financial risk for Hutchinson and Tayleure, but the circus on Westgate Street clearly went from strength to strength. Twelve months later the Western Mail described the Christmas performance …as a treat which every child in Cardiff ought to have the opportunity of seeing.  Two years later, in 1879, to meet the growing demand for even greater luxury and spectacle, the building had been refurbished, the stables had been increased to hold 70 horses and acts were being imported from Paris and Madrid. The headline act in November 1879 was the trapeze act, the Silbons, who had performed at the Great Exhibition in Paris in 1878. The newspaper reported that they had  …created a great sensation by their astounding mid-air feats [Weekly Mail, 15 November 1879].

The octagonal circus building with its central tower can be seen clearly in a photograph of Westgate Street in the 1880s held at the Glamorgan Archives (ref.: DX254/24/1).

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Yet, despite its popularity, it appears that, by the end of the 1880s, Hutchinson and Tayleure’s Grand Circus and Palace of Varieties was no more. A clue to what happens next is provided in the third set of plans for a circus in Cardiff, submitted in 1890, that will be the subject of the last article in this series.

Tony Peters, Glamorgan Archives Volunteer

The Circus Comes to Town! The Circus and Grand Palace of Variety, St Mary Street, Cardiff, 1870

The term ‘circus’ dates back to ancient Rome. It was originally associated with the rectangular arenas built in towns and cities for entertainment and, in particular, for chariot races, re-enactments of famous battles and gladiatorial combat. The modern circus, based on a central ring housed in a circular building or tent, is a more recent phenomenon that celebrates its 250th anniversary in 2018. The format of the modern circus is attributed to Philip Astley who, in 1768, opened an amphitheatre in Lambeth, London for displays of horse riding. To amuse the audience, in between equestrian acts, Astley provided a range of entertainment including jugglers, acrobats and clowns. Given that the horses provided the centre piece of the show, the ring was a minimum of 42 feet in diameter to provide an adequate turning circle and this has remained the standard size for a circus ring ever since. The circus at that time would, in most instances, have been a wooden structure with the first ‘Big Top’ performances under canvas dating from the 1820s.

The idea of a compact circular arena that brought together a variety of acts was a huge success. It was an extremely popular and spectacular entertainment that appealed to all ages, and soon many cities and towns across Britain had one or more circuses. As we celebrate 250 years of circus the records held at Glamorgan Archives provide us with details of the circuses that were built in the 19th century in the heart of Cardiff.

It is likely that, in comparison to other towns, the circus came late to Cardiff, given that the population boom associated with the docks and the coal trade dates from approximately 1840 onwards.

Glamorgan Archives holds plans for two circuses that were built in Cardiff in the 1870s. The first was built and opened in November 1870 on an unused plot of land on the corner of St Mary Street and Wood Street, later occupied by the Prince of Wales Theatre. St Mary Street in the mid-19th century was far from being a grand street, as confirmed in newspaper reports:

In 1854 Cardiff was a very different place to Cardiff today. The rateable value of St Mary Street was not a tenth of what it is now. The site of the present post office was occupied as a “dead house”. On the opposite side to the Town Hall was the old police station and below it a number of cottages let at 2s 6d a week when tenants could be obtained. The southern front of the London and Provincial Bank was an old fish shop and house let at £10 a year….The corner of Wood Street and St Mary Street was a waste piece of ground on which Signor Quagliani’s circus was afterwards placed. At the bottom of the Street was “the bog”…. [Evening Express, 28 May 1895].

From newspaper reports we know that Signor Quagliani and his Company had left Cardiff by 1863, although it is likely that other circuses, including Holbrook’s, continued to use the land as a circus through the latter half of the 1860s. The circus building would have been a semi-permanent wooden construction, using Astley’s format of a central ring and tiered seating probably for up to 500 people. By 1870 there was a very well defined Circus season in Cardiff, from November through to Easter, suggesting that circus companies were combining summer Big Top tours around Wales with town based circus in the winter months.

The plans for the St Mary Street circus submitted by Circus impresarios, Hutchinson and Tayleure, in October 1870, represented a step change in the scale and decoration of the Circus provided in Cardiff. By 1870 the town was expanding rapidly and, with the expansion, there was a demand for popular entertainment. The local authorities, supported by the police, were in favour of ventures such as the circus that provided family based entertainment that helped to keep people away from the drinking houses in the town.

Hutchinson and Tayleure were established circus providers and they saw the potential in Cardiff with their plans to double the size of the previous building so that they could accommodate up to 1000 people each night. In an attempt to cast the net as wide as possible the new structure had different grades of seating, with boxes charged at 2s 6d per person to a gallery and pit at 1s and 6d respectively. The entrance to the Gallery was on St Mary Street opposite Caroline Street and the Boxes and Pit on Wood Street opposite Temperance Town.

Although we do not have a photograph of the building, the plans held at Glamorgan Archives provide a good impression of its layout (ref.: BC/S/1/90484).

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The overall building was rectangular in shape, to make best use of the land available, with ticket offices on both St Mary Street and Wood Street. However, once inside, the interior conformed to the traditional circus layout with tiered seating surrounding a central 42 foot diameter ring. There were two tunnels, opposite each other, for people and horses to enter and leave the ring with platforms above the tunnels for a brass band. The provision of accommodation under the seating for artist changing rooms and, most importantly, stabling for horses confirmed that the Circus followed the tried and tested format of equestrian acts interspersed by a range of acrobats and clowns. In addition, the circus would have featured a number of speciality acts, including singing and recitation perhaps more commonly associated with music hall in later years. Caged and exotic animals only became a common feature in circuses at a later date.

It was clear that no expense was spared in what Hutchinson and Tayleure styled …their new elegant Circus and Grand Palace of Variety. The local newspapers reported that the building and furnishings had cost a thousand pounds. A report in the Cardiff and Merthyr Guardian on 12 November 1870 described the new building:

This really fine building will be opened to the public on Monday. As a place of public amusement it promises to be the best of the kind ever opened in Cardiff.

The timber roof is entirely concealed by a complete ceiling of red and white cloth suspended in festoons from the centre with flags and banners of various colours from points along the roof and the pillars supporting the front of the promenade.…The floor of the boxes is covered with Brussels carpet, the back being richly papered and decorated with curtains.

The interior will be lighted by a number of large gas stars giving out hundreds of jets of light… It is more commodious, more comfortable and more elegant that any circus that has been erected in the town.

Hutchinson and Tayleure had left nothing to chance and had made strenuous efforts to win approval from all quarters. During the first week they invited the Mayor to host a ‘grand soiree equestre’ with proceeds to go to the Cardiff Infirmary. They also provided the Cardiff Board of Guardians with tickets so that the paupers from the Cardiff Union Workhouse could attend a performance. Never known to ‘undersell’ themselves, Hutchinson and Tayleure on the first night of the Winter Season announced:

The Entertainments will be varied nightly and include brilliant equestrian achievement, daring gymnastic exploits, great entrees and cavalcades, brilliant spectacle, historical pageants and a host of novel scenes new to the public of this town [Western Mail 14 November 1870].

The people of Cardiff flocked to the Circus in their thousands and filled the arena night after night. Hutchinson and Tayleure did not disappoint. The Cardiff Times reported on 19 November 1870 that the audience:

…crowded every part of the spacious building… The entertainment was of a varied and most entertaining description. The agility of the acrobats, the extraordinary feats of the other performers, both human and animal, and the buffoonery of the clever clowns afforded a treat to the frequenters such as Cardiff seldom affords.

A month later the Western Mail reported that the crowds at the Circus were still …immense... Even a near tragedy (when the trestle tables and mattresses positioned to break the fall of the trapeze artist, Niblo, gave way as he ended his act with a double somersault) was averted by the …cat like agility… of the artist. As the newspaper reported:

His wonderful escape was loudly cheered from all parts of the Circus [Western Mail, December 14 1879].

Yet Hutchinson and Tayleure’s spectacular St Mary Street circus ran for less than 6 years. The story of what happened next is told through a further set of plans held at Glamorgan Archives that will feature in the second of a short series of articles on the Circus in Cardiff.

Tony Peters, Glamorgan Archives Volunteer

Do you know these people? The 100th anniversary of the establishment of the Cardiff Naturalists’ Society

While the records of the Cardiff Naturalists’ Society held at Glamorgan Archives major on the running of the Society and the many lectures and events sponsored since its creation in 1867, there is also a section that draws together a number of photographs associated with the main collection. It is a very mixed and fascinating set of images. Within the collection there is a photograph of approximately 150 people standing on the steps of the National Museum in Cardiff posing for a group photograph. They are all very well turned out and there are clues to their purpose from the number of umbrellas and raincoats worn or carried by many of those present.

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The photograph is one of over 60 set out in an album, dated September 1967, compiled to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the establishment of the Cardiff Naturalists’ Society. The album also contains a programme of the events staged over three days to mark the centenary. From the details in the programme the photograph was almost certainly taken on Saturday 23rd September 1967 at around 9.30am, as the members of the Society gathered to meet the coaches that would take them on a full day of activities. This included a visit to Old Beaupre Castle in the morning followed by lunch, hosted by the Chairman of the Glamorgan County Council, at Duffryn House and a tour of the garden.

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As they stand on the Museum steps the group appear to be in very good spirits. Many would have had a late night after attending the Civic Reception and Centenary Dinner held at the City Hall the previous evening. The programme for the Reception, held in the Assembly Room, promised a menu of 5 courses including sole bonne femme, saddle of lamb and peach melba, with music provided by the Eddie Graves Trio. The toast to the Queen was proposed by the Society’s President, Col. Sir Cennydd Traherne, Lord Lieutenant of Glamorgan.

Although on the Saturday many had taken precautions against the weather, the photographs of Old Beaupre and Duffryn suggest that they had a fine day. Furthermore, the celebrations were far from over. The coaches were expected back in Cardiff at 5.15pm to allow time for those due to attend a Reception at 8.00pm in the National Museum, hosted by the President and Council of the Museum. The album contains a number of photographs of both the Civic reception on the Friday night and the reception held in the National Museum on the Saturday.

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On the following day, Sunday 24 September, there was another full day with three separate field meetings concluding with a picnic lunch. Unfortunately the album does not contain photographs of the Sunday field meetings. From the programme, however, we know that the Biological and Geological Section visited Merthyr Mawr and the Ornithological Section visited Kenfig Pool. In addition, the Archaeological, Photographic and Junior Sections came together for a visit to Caerphilly Castle. In each case the meetings ended after lunch so that members could return to Cardiff for Evensong at Llandaff Cathedral.

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It was a full and varied itinerary to mark a very special event in the Society’s history. If you, or friends and family, were amongst either the 150 people standing on the steps of the Museum on Saturday 23 September 1967 or those that attended the receptions held at the City Hall and the National Museum, you might well be interested in viewing the photograph album (ref.: DCNS/PH/8/16). In addition, there are a number of photographs of the exhibition staged by the Society in September 1967 to mark the Centenary (ref.: DCNS/PH/8/1-15). The photographs can be seen at Glamorgan Archives along with a wide range of records of the proceedings of the Cardiff Naturalists’ Society dating back to 1867.

Tony Peters, Glamorgan Archives Volunteer