This Community Memory Book is not an historical record but rather the recollections of a group of Rhyl residents who were happy to share photographs and memories of growing up in the town.
We all know that the mind can sometime play tricks and one person's memory might be slightly different to another but all memories are important and so all have been included here.
If you look closely you can see the Pier in the left hand corner of the photograph. The skating rink stage is not visible but was on the right hand side, the Promenade side of the photograph.
Memories of the Roller Skating Club.
"In the 70s the Roller Skating Club performed weekly evening shows during the summer. These took place at the skating rink. In the photograph, from the late 70s, we are dressed in pearly kings and queens outfits".
Beryl [on the left]and her sister, Marie, with their white leather skating boots.
"My father had these specially made for us. The makers had never made white leather boots before, they were always brown."
Saturday, 14th July 1962. The Beatles played in Wales for the first time. Their first Welsh gig at the Regent Dansette Hall. Tickets were 5 shillings for an hour performance.
The Beatles came to Rhyl again a year later on 19th & 20th July when they played at the Ritz Ballroom [photograph taken at one of these shows].
After the first night The Beatles stayed at The Westminster Hotel [in the Bridal Suite].
Only one car and pedestrians seem to have right of way. You might be able to spot the Boots sign on the right of the photograph. "I remember that Boots had its own lending library. It was upstairs and books were reserved and loaned out at the cost of a few coppers per week."
Talbot's the Drapers which opened early in the 1900's. This photograph shows the wedding and dress shop that is currently the location of Detour.
There was also another shop in High Street [68 - 70] which sold material and haberdashery.
Wellington Road looking from the High Street end. shops visible are the Gas Board, Rhyl Camera Centre and A.J. Roberts [known as the Catholic Shop because of the amount of Catholic religious items it sold]. The Manweb shop was on the opposite corner in High Street.
Mayoress Jill Baker with her father and Mayor of Rhuddlan, Cllr. Ron Davies, who in 1990, officially opened Rhyl's newly restored Victorian Town Hall. Cllr. Davies was known locally as a Promenade Inspector. This building which now contains Rhyl's One Stop Shop previously housed Rhyl's Public Library.
Rhyl's original public library was built with a £3000 donation from Andrew Carnegie, the Scottish/ American philanthropist.
In 1905, a letter from New York in the Rhyl Journal confirmed the donation and the foundation stone of the Library was laid in January 1906 with the Library being opened in April 1907.
Not everyone was happy with Rhyl accepting the donation as it came with certain conditions which resulted in a small rise in the rates. Opposition was organised but the donation was finally accepted by a majority of 245.
Located in Wellington Road, next to the Co-op. Two doors down on the left was one of the two Lido Cafés at No. 47. The other Lido Café was on the Promenade immediately facing the Pavillion.
Waterworth's the Greengrocers. Memories of the store included the two doors [one for the fruit and veg. and one for the fishmonger's counter], the sacks of potatoes that used to be outside and the squashy bananas that were given to 'lucky' children accompanying their mothers.
Val Knowles behind the sweet counter. The loose tobacco, cigarettes, pipes etc. were sold on the other side where staff also filled petrol lighters! Was this photo taken in 1966? Look at the England flag!
An early Tesco Supermarket in Bodfor Street. This picture was taken in the 1960s.
"I remember taking my two daughters who loved the fact that they could slide on the very slippy floors!"
Anyone remember Rhyl's Green Shield stamp shop? It was on Vale Road on the site of Roger W. Jones', opposite the gates of the Coronation Gardens.
Prior to the Green Shield shop on the same site there was Gee's Blacksmiths Forge.
" I remember going to Justin's Riding School and taking a pony to the forge for it to have a new shoe"
Hadley's Typewriter Company. No. 9 Bodfor Street.
Mr Jack Hughes' cycle and pram shop on the corner of Bodfor Street and Kinmel Street; on the site of the Grosvenor Hotel.
E.B. Jones were a chain of grocery shops in North Wales. They had branches in many towns with the Head Office in Rhyl.
Look at the telephone numbers. The Head Office was Rhyl 9! The Abbey Street branch doesn't even have a telephone.
1932 Wholesale Price List
Demolished 1974. These photographs were taken from the front window of 27 West Parade.
The Amphitheatre, officially named The Gaiety, was demolished in 1991 to make way for the Events Arena.
To the right of the photograph you may be able to spot the outer wall of the Outdoor Swimming Pool which was one of the few the pools that used sea water.
Billy used to take children around the Marine Lake. He now sits proudly in the Marine Lake Station Museum.
Ocean Beach opened in the 1890s, growing into an amusement park at the Marine Lake. It relocated in 1954 to the larger premises at the West end of the promenade and closed on 2nd September 2007.
Britain's first tubular steel rollercoaster was built here.
The site is now the Marina Quay retail park.
Anyone recognise these handsome young men?
The Pink [published by the Liverpool Echo] was sold outside Rhyl's bus station every Saturday. It was full of the day's football results and reports of key matches.
This picture is entitled Rhyl,1923. It was taken at the Paddling Pool which was previously known as Rhyl Model Yacht Pond.
The Paddling Pool as we remember it.
I seem to remember that this short-lived attraction was opened by Terry Wogan? Am I right?
As I recall it went from nowhere to nowhere along the Promenade!
This photograph of the Main Post Office shows the one that was in High Street, opposite where Boots is now.
It moved eventually to Wellington Road and then back to High Street but as a much smaller counter-only service located within a newsagent.
Photo taken on the 1970s
Fun at the Sun Centre in 1980.
A Donkey Derby on the Beach in 1960.
Remember Clwyd Ices? 'Often licked, never beaten'
Childern enjoying a ride on the donkeys in the 1980s.
The Baths which contained 775,000 gallons of pure seawater opened in 1930 but then was closed in the 1970s.
Circus elephants having a wash and brush up!
The Royal Alexandra Hospital in 1925.
If you look carefully you can see the open-air balconies. On dry days patients would have their beds wheeled out so that they could 'take the air'.
The first of the 'Big 3' cinemas to close. A Beautiful cinema decorated in a luxurious Art Deco style. If you had to queue outside for a popular film you could buy your sweets from the small confectionary kiosk.
Gone but not forgotten!
L.S. Lowry came to Rhyl in 1929 and amongst other sketches made one of Edward Henry Street.
Anyone remember the 'toast racks' which were single decker open topped buses.
Enjoying the sunshine in the streets behind the famous WaterTowers
The very first May Day. "I was supposed to be in the May Queen's court in the 1950's but the day before I was taken ill with appendicitis and never got the chance again!"
The 1960 May Day Parade. This year there were no vehicles so everyone walked from the Foryd Bridge along to the Pavilion for the crowning of the May Queen and Miss Rhyl.
Carmel Roberts nee Rainford.
This is May 1956 outside Carmel's family home. Along with Britannia you can see representatives from Wales, Scotland, England and Ireland.
Here is Britannia [in civvies] in 1958 roller skating on the Promenade. A gang of local boys can be seen giggling, waiting for her [and the other skaters] to fall over!
The young man second right is Jason Field grandson of Jean Sherriff, Miss Rhyl 1946 (and the CAB volunteer pictured later in this book). His mother Sue was May Queen in 1958. This Mayday Float was in the Parade in the mid/late 70s.
Jean Sherriff. Miss Rhyl 1946.
The Pier was built in the 1860s. and was originally longer than Llandudno's. By the 1960's it was no longer structurally sound and in 1973 it was demolished.
The Pier in it's heyday. 'In the 50s I can remember acrobats performing at the end of the pier. I can also remember a Camera Obscurer that you paid to look through'
Saving the blushes of bathing belles!
Anyone remember the Miniature Tramway which operated from1952-57?
The Promenade in its prime!
The architect, George Gilbert Scott was appointed as the architect (he was also the architect for St Pancras Station) and the foundation stone was laid in 1861 with the church opening in 1867 without its spire which was completed in 1875.
The original Catholic Church in Wellington Road was formally opened in 1863 making its building almost contemporaneous with that if St Thomas'. It was replaced by the the newly built one in 1975.
Our Lady of the Assumption opened December 1975
This building was previously known as St Ann's Primary School . The building is now used by Rhyl Operatic Society.
Christ Church Primary School was originally located in Vaughan Street. The Headmaster, Mr Williams, was also Headmaster of Ysgol Dewi Sant the Welsh language primary school. Miss Phyllis Owen, Headmistress, wrote a school musical every year for the top form to perform.
Christ Church subsequently moved to the site of the old Glyndwr Secondary Modern School, Ernest Street.
Anyone remember Garth who ran the shop? His sister Pat and her husband ran Greaves record shop across the road in Queen Street. "I can remember ordering my Beatles L.P.s in advance."
School uniforms were bought from either B & G Stores in Queens Street or from The Strand in High Street.
Many parents paid for the uniforms thanks to Practical Cheques which were an early form of credit card!
The Practical Cheque office was upstairs in Kinmel Street behind the Crosville Bus Station.
"I can remember the Practical Cheque man calling to our house regularly to collect the weekly payment."
A very early photo of Rhyl Railway Station. "I remember a machine which printed out your name (or anything else you wanted!) on thin pieces of metal... I'm not sure what they could be used for! There were also machines that sold bars of chocolate or packets of 10 cigarettes." "I remember that in the bus station there was a machine which dispensed frozen Kiarora Orange triangle."
Many years later young lads used to 'case' visitors suitcases, taking them on homemade trolleys to their bed and breakfast lodgings"
Thank you to our contributors: