PHOTOS-Canal Parade, Butetown.

Canal Parade, Grangetown, CardiffTaking a different route back from Cardiff Bay and veering down a slightly dodgy-looking side-street called Canal Parade. (Someone crossed off the obvious letter on the sign for humourous effect – and yes i still titter nearly everytime I see it!)

The street didn’t look particularly inviting and looked quite run down, with some new development on one side but empty spaces on the other with remnants of old industry and buildings.

Some warehouses were apparent further down but there didn’t seem much life there at all – I only spotted a postwoman on her walks! (She did chuckle at me taking photos of random things mind!)
Canal Parade, Grangetown, Cardiff
"Welcome to the docks" graffiti in Grangetown
Canal Parade, Grangetown, Cardiff
The area seemed to be used as some glorified car park and an area that people use to walk through to get to the docks, Butetown, Cardiff Bay, City Centre and beyond. Hi-rise flats can be seen in the distance beyond empty, derelict spaces – prime for development bringing the merging of Cardiff Bay and Cardiff City Centre ever closer.

Currently the area occupied by The Huggard Centre and a few other smaller projects is being demolished making way for another phase of the Callaghan Square developments (if thats what it’s going to be called!)
Canal Parade, Grangetown, Cardiff
"This is da docks" graffiti in Grangetown
Canal Parade, Grangetown, Cardiff
It was quite a souless route with not much to see but some old corrugated fencing, complete with painted on text led for some gritty photos.
Also littered throughout the area were slogans and graffiti giving an essence of what the locals were thinking from “This is da docks” to “Crack City” to quote a few.
Peeling paint at Canal Parade, Grangetown, Cardiff
"Dignity" graffiti at Canal Parade, Grangetown, Cardiff"Dock Rule" graffiti in Grangetown, Cardiff
"Crack City" graffiti in Grangetown
The wasn’t any sign of a canal or a parade – hence I wonder whether they were all filled in together during the 70’s when the canals along Mill Lane and Churchill Way disappeared? There were some great walls along the route ripe for some graffiti and local comment! Make of them what you will! 😉 But essentially this type of street in Cardiff is dying out and this one won’t be around for too long in it’s current state! Well worth a wander if you are in the vacinity!

The full set can be viewed at:-
Vodpod videos no longer available.

8 Responses to “PHOTOS-Canal Parade, Butetown.”

  1. Canal Parade used to run alongside the Glamorganshire Canal, which was paved over to become Dumballs Road. It used to be the Western boundary of old Tiger Bay. The canal ran from Cardiff docks as far as Merthyr Tydfil, and some of the old locks can still be seen in Whitchurch. The subway going from around the Barfly towards the castle used to be a tunnel for the canal, and there are the remnants of winding gear for a lock at both ends of the subway.

    • Thanks for the reply!
      The history of Cardiff is so interesting but a lot of Cardiffians don’t really know what came before them!

      I was aware of the canal system in the city centre but not entirely sure where else it ran! makes sense that it HAD to go towards the bay really!

      I almost feel like unearthing some old maps of Cardiff from say 100 years ago and see what it all looked like back then!

      Thanks again.

  2. There is a site where you can find old pics of Cardiff, it is and there are loads, mostly of the city centre, but also the suburbs. The one I find freakiest is of Roath Park Lake surrounded by fields and farms. No sign of the houses that surround it now. There are also pics of the subway by Barfly that I mentioned earlier with the lock winding gear still in place.

  3. That photo sums up how important the canal system was and how much we have lost in the centre of Cardiff.

    It’s just brought it back that we’ve lost street names like West Canal Wharf and East Canal Wharf to name a few. Im sure it wont be long before any reference to the canal system is wiped away entirely!

  4. Let’s face it, East Canal Wharf, West Canal Wharf and the top end of Bute Street were swallowed up by Calahan Square

  5. its all interesting stuff i did some research about 2 years ago ,yes a massive shame,thanks to the cardiff planners,it looks like the end was 1942, there is still the under pass bridge opposite wickes western avenue,then forest farm section preserved in 1961.interviewed some people

  6. I wonder how many people realize that the Northern Entrance to St David’s Centre off Queen Street opposite The Friary (by the Principality) is actually the site of “The Hole” This was the underground tunnel that took the Glamorganshire Canal under Queen Street ???? The first shop units inside the Centre are lower level than Queen Street itself. Not built like that intentionally, just took advantage of the depth the old canal tunel that ran along that line. The Glamorganshire Canal has a truly facinating history that affects all Cardiff and Butetown.

  7. Very interesting stuff – so much so that I wonder why no local TV station (including MadeinCardiff) hasnt considered making a programme looking back at the canal system and now what is left lying beneath our city?


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