Here are two views of the top of the High Street leading to the sea.  The first view is from approximately half a century ago, the second is a current view taken from a similar position.  Whichever is your preference, things are constantly changing – nothing stays the same.

high st prom orig copy


high st prom current

Here are links to exciting new attractions/events in Rhyl, let’s celebrate its future as well as its history.




Filed under 1960's, Buildings/Location, General

4 responses to “Change.

  1. ola66

    Thanks for the photos……you are correct nothing stays the same otherwise it stagnants, Rhyl and other seaside resorts are at a low point economically and this cannot but affect the fabric of the town…….we all know this. Rhyl has never attempted to preserve itself in aspic as has say Llandudno and in my opinion has been better for it, however it is now having to reinvent itself to suit circumstances and to create a future for itself. For me the development at the harbour has been a real boost and from the reaction of the Rhyl population that development is being appreciated………I hope that there will be more of that quality to come. I don’t think that the development at the top of high street deserves the same acolaids. I have no reason to think that the designers didn’t try hard but I have to question the brief that they were given. Rhyl, unlike say Colwyn Bay, has been lucky enough to have had clear views from the town over its prize asset……the sea! To look up from lower High Street and see the town disappear into the horizon was a part of seaside magic. Unfortunately the recent landscape and building works on the promenade have not understood a very basic rule……….at the seaside views of the sea are all important………the promenade is not about creating enclosure it is about opening the eye to that wonderful gem that the town has……….the sea. Rhyl is doubly lucky in having dramatic view of Snowdonia from that same promenade………we are blessed!……… however whilst Rhyl is going through this period of reconstruction it must ensure that whatever new developments take place on the promenade (or in the town) they do not destroy the very things that have made Rhyl special in the past.

    Peter Finnigan

  2. Thank you very much for thoughtful comment Peter. I can only echo everything that you’ve said. The beach and the sea are indeed our prize assets. Our reinvention seems to be going along the lines of outdoor leisure and sport – we’re on a National Cycle Route, we have the new Marsh Tracks, an annual triathlon, kite surfing etc. The work being done by Denbighshire Countryside Services at the old tip site is to be commended. Our main problem will be dispelling the negative image of Rhyl that many people hold.
    (These comments are of a personal nature and do not necessarily reflect the views of Rhyl History Club. Your statutory rights are not affected. Other views are available etc etc!! – Editor)

  3. Ola66 is repeating the myth that seaside resort economies have declined. Only a minority have declined: overall, the visitor economies of seaside towns have risen by just over 1% per year since, at least, 1970. The studies I’m referring to were done at Sheffield Hallam University – the main ones were in 2010 and 2014. Accurate figures were gathered for 1997-2007 but they believe the same applies from 1970-onwards (as far back as it’s possible to measure, using the same method).

  4. Peter Jones

    Earlier than the main Sheffield studies into the British seaside economy, the British Urban Regeneration Association (Seaside Network) held their second conference at Rhyl Pavillion Theatre in 2007 – they chose Rhyl because it was the only seaside resort (along with Prestatyn Ffrith) that had undergone such extensive redevelopment, but their conclusions have been hushed up by Denbighshire CC, Chris Ruane, Peter Hain and the rest – as well the local and regional press.

    Rhyl wasn’t held up as an example of ‘best practice’, as they’d like you to think: the new promenade was condemned for it’s loss of ‘sense of place’, and the construction of municipal leisure facilities on a promenade. All the councillors and national politicians – all present – were told that Rhyl was an example of how NOT to attempt regenerating a seaside resort.

    In contrast, look at the newspaper reports about the conference, which shows Hain and Ruane as liars. And it’s very much the same with Denbighshire’s response to the Sheffield study: despite the council being one of It’s sponsors (it’s logo is displayed in the introductions to each of them), they’ve chosen to ignore the findings – because they don’t suit them – and instead to quote incorrect cliches the Sheffield researchers have debunked as myths. I saw the litererature DCC used in support of the West End housing development, which claimed all seaside resorts have suffered gradual decline since 1949 – sent to all the residents of the affected streets. As I repeated from the Sheffield study: as measured in terms of estimated numbers of jobs directly supported by tourism, there’s been a growth in the seaside economy of just over 1 percent per year – definitely from 1997-2007, and probably from at least 1970. There may have been a decline at some point but the researchers believe unlikely from the data they used. Certainly, the seaside economy was much smaller prior to 1970 than it is now – the 1970 starting point is because accurate calculations cannot be gained from the data the methods – using comparator towns not tourist destinations – that they used.

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