Hamadryad Park

Hamadryad Park takes its name from the nearby site of the historic hospital ship HMS Hamadryad, and the hospital that opened there in 1905. The hospital was absorbed into the National Health Service in 1947.

In 1959 there was a proposal to create a recreational open space near the hospital by reclamation of approximately 10.8 acres of foreshore. The scheme involved construction of an embankment and parapet as well as other works, all estimated to cost £99,000.[1] An application for grant funding was unsuccessful and the proposal went no further.[2]

In 1965 the Council was in the process of acquiring three plots of land adjoining Hamadryad Hospital to create a public open space.[3] This land was still awaiting development in 1969 when the Director of Parks reported that the laying out of the area would take place as and when funds were available.[4]

Hamadryad Park was laid out during the 1970s, a small park immediately adjacent to the eastern boundary of the hospital and linking with Burt Street. It can be seen on a 1979 aerial photograph.[5] A 1981 aerial photograph shows a grass area with a running track marked out for school sports, and a narrow tarmaced area with playground equipment.[6] In a 1991 aerial photograph the playground is enlarged, with a wood bark surface, but the grass field appears smaller.[7]

This original Hamadryad Park no longer exists,[8] that space having been allocated for building development following the major extension to the park in the early 2000s. Arising from the work of the Cardiff Bay Development Corporation (CBDC), newly made-up land was created from the salt marsh and mudflats, and now forms the present-day Hamadryad Park.[9]

CBDC was disolved on 31st March 2000 and the City of Cardiff Council assumed responsibility for the park, which now consists mainly of playing fields and open grassland, with some tree planting that includes Hybrid poplars.[10] There is a large playground close to the local houses.

Sources of information

  1. Meeting of the Parks, Baths and Cemeteries Committee 17th July 1959
  2. Meeting of the Parks, Baths and Cemeteries Committee 26th October 1959
  3. Meeting of the Parks, Baths and Cemeteries Committee 12th July 1965
  4. Meeting of the Parks, Baths and Cemeteries Committee 17th February 1969
  5. Welsh Government Ordnance Survey OS79_129 image 101
  6. Welsh Government JAS SGlam 3281 image 94a
  7. Welsh Government Cardiff Vale of Glamorgan Newport 160_91 image 0009
  8. Personal communication (MC)
  9. Hamadryad Park from Parks and Gardens UK
  10. Personal communication (TD)