Author Topic: R E Jones Printing Works, Conwy Quay  (Read 241 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

DaveR

  • Administrator
R E Jones Printing Works, Conwy Quay
« Reply #-1 on: September 26, 2017, 09:21:36 AM »
Whilst looking for something else, I came across this old image of Conwy Quay, showing the former R. E. Jones Printing Works (highlighted in red). It was situated on what is now a rather desolate piece of paving between the Liverpool Arms and the Smallest House. From 1900 to 1972, it was the home of the North Wales Weekly News. I'm wondering if there are any better photos of the old Printing Works out there?

Some history below:

"The Weekly News’ modest beginnings on Rosehill Street mushroomed with success, and in 1900 a major move to a brand new printworks on Conwy Quay helped the publication go from strength to strength.

It was RE Jones’ brother William who built the new works, between the Liverpool Arms and the Smallest House, an area of land now empty and at the centre of a 21st century battle over whether to leave it as an open space, or build a restaurant there.

In 1989, to celebrate the paper’s 100th birthday, reporter Stuart James spoke to RE Jones’ niece Dilys Crawford, then the oldest surviving member of the Jones family.

She said: “I worked as a cashier in accounts until I married, and my office looked out onto the river.

“The quay was very busy then and it was a wonderful sight to come down to the works in the morning and see all the trawlers coming in and the gulls scrapping for bits of fish around them.

The presses were a big attraction on the quay. The door to the printing room was a stable door and passers-by used to lean over the bottom door and watch the presses thumping away.

This was back in the day when each individual letter on a page was set by hand, a process eventually replaced by hot metal, whereby printers cast molten metal into lattices which would mould a line of type onto the metal. No computers, just skill.

Dilys Crawford added: “People used to stay with the firm all their lives then, and there was no retiring age. An old man called Tommy Jones used to feed the paper into the machines on press night.

Then the apprentices used to take the papers up to Conwy station by hand cart to catch the train along the coast at 6am on Thursdays.”

After seven decades on the quay, in May 1972 the Weekly News crossed the river to its present site in Llandudno Junction, a purpose-built factory and office."


You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login

DaveR

  • Administrator
Re: R E Jones Printing Works, Conwy Quay
« on: September 26, 2017, 09:26:48 AM »
Found one:

mondie

  • Member
Re: R E Jones Printing Works, Conwy Quay
« Reply #1 on: September 27, 2017, 08:28:25 AM »
why would such a good looking building like that get removed for unused open space? It would make a great addition to the Quay and would likely be a boutique hotel these days

DaveR

  • Administrator
Re: R E Jones Printing Works, Conwy Quay
« Reply #2 on: September 27, 2017, 09:33:26 AM »
There used to be a policy of purchasing & removing all buildings that backed onto the outside of the Town Walls. Personally, I think this was a mistake along the Quay - the site of the former Printing Works is now just a sterile & windswept expanse of grey granite that is rarely used for anything.

I also think that removing all the buildings along the main section of quay was a bad move. They were an eclectic mix of buildings of all shapes/sizes and materials that could easily have been renovated back into commercial use, whilst retaining the original character. I'm afraid that CCBC seem to lack much in the way of aesthetic vision or commercial enterprise, sadly.

mondie

  • Member
Re: R E Jones Printing Works, Conwy Quay
« Reply #3 on: September 27, 2017, 11:16:11 AM »
That's an odd policy that I suppose must had some social merit at the time. Its a shame though as it would make a nice addition to the quay. Thanks for the explanation, not something that I would ever have suspected as the reason!