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History: Vintage Technology snippets in the South Wales area of the UK 1956
Various bits of information about radio, TV, home electrical goods and events and companies in the South Wales area.   If you have any personal memories of these events or establishments - please let me know.


Santon Extension (February 1956)
A 12,000 sq ft extension to their post-war factory at Newport, Mon, has been built by Santon, Ltd., electrical equipment manufacturers.  By using the extra space for storage purposes, Santon will be able to establish a self-contained "works within the works" for the manufacture of electric water heaters for industrial users.
The new Santon factory was constructed after the war in Corporation Road, Newport, to replace an old works.  At that time production methods were replanned and all obsolete equipment was replaced.
Nine New Branches for Curry's This Year (April 1956)
Currys have announced their expansion plans for 1956.  These include the opening of nine new branches at Wimbledon, Dorchester, St. Austell, Fareham, Bletchley, Harrogate, Wishaw, Deal and Ludlow.
During the last twelve months branches have been opened at Liverpool, Penzance, Swansea, Cheltenham, East Grinstead, Preston, Bishop Auckland and Glasgow.  This further expansion will bring the total of Currys' branches to 274.
£20 'Fridges in £150 Pre-Fabs (July 1956)
The views of the Ministry of Housing and Local Government are to be obtained by the Abertillery (Mon) council, as to whether refrigerator replacement units, costing £20 each, should be placed in temporary prefabricated bungalows now valued at only £150 each.  Originally the units had only cost £8 but in the last six months they have risen to £20, including installation, the surveyor told the council's finance committee.
As the council could not dispense with the prefabs at present, from a public health standpoint they either had to provide the refrigerator units or build ventilated pantries in the dwellings, said Councillor S. Harris.
£20,000 Machine (July 1956)
At a cost of £20,000 a new jig-borer has been installed in the tool room of the Hoover (Washing Machines), Ltd., factory at Merthyr Tydfil, Glamorgan.
Newport Showroom has TV Theatre (September 1956)
E. W. Jones (Electrical) Ltd., New Street Wellington, have opened a new double-fronted electrical, radio and TV showroom at 8 St. Mary Street, Newport.  There is an extensive display of electrical appliances and this new showroom gives customers every opportunity to see these appliances demonstrated.  The public can see the full length of this showroom from the street, while at the rear is a TV theatre where 30 or more TV receivers can be demonstrated.
Perforated peg boards are used to display smaller electrical appliances and are coloured primrose and navy blue and illuminated with spot lights.  The TV theatre is in maroon and gold.  This showroom is designed on similar lines to that of the new showroom in Wellington where more than 40 sets can be seen working.
With the opening of these new showrooms E. W. Jones Ltd. organised a window shopping competition and the prizes were presented to the winning competitors by Councillor Mrs. Stephens.  Miss Gwen Berryman (Mrs. Dan Archer of BBC radio fame) judged the entries.  Councillor Mrs. Stephens said the new premises were a fine achievement by the company, who had been established in Newport for over 25 year.
PMG Confirms I.T.A. S. Wales Site: Channel 10 Proposed (November 1956)
The Postmaster-General last week confirmed in a written Parliamentary reply that the St. Hilary site for I.T.A.'s South Wales station, forecast in last week's Trader, has been approved.  Furthermore, the station would probably operate on Channel 10.  This channel had been provisionally allocated but would be subject to final clearance with the Continental administrations concerned.
Pye Transmitters for South Wales ITA (December 1956)
The Independent Television Authority have placed a contract with Pye Ltd. for the transmitter for the south Wales and west of England TV station, which will start operating towards the end of next year.  It will be similar to the one at Lichfield and comprises a 20kW vision transmitter and associated 5kW sound transmitter.  5kW vision and 1¼kW sound transmitters are also being provided as stand-by equipment.
S. Wales E.T.C.T.A. Activities (December 1956)
Two smoking concerts have recently been held by the South Wales branch of the Electrical Trades' Commercial Travellers' Association, both being well supported by members.
The first concert was held at the British Legion Institute, Skewen, Glam, and the other at Llanrumney Hall Hotel, Cardiff.  A collection was made at both these functions, the proceeds being given to charity.  The branch's first annual luncheon was held on December 7.