‘CAPTAIN SCOTT’S SHIP PANELS’ SAVED BY THE ROYAL
The discovery came to light when Sisters of St Joseph’s Convent on North Road in the city, read about the hotel’s missing Captain Scott memorial plaque in the South Wales Echo.
The plaque commemorated the Antarctic explorer’s last formal dinner, held at the Royal, before embarking on his final expedition in 1910. The Captain Scott Room has been preserved ever since.
With their convent due to be demolished after 75 years of their occupancy, the nuns contacted The Royal Hotel to offer the antique panelling so that it could be preserved for future generations.
Jon Swingler, Manager of the hotel went along to the convent to help remove the panels, shortly before the convent was demolished.
He said: “We are hugely grateful to the sisters for leading us to this wonderful find. We have been able to recover 34 feet and it is in excellent condition. We have already used it to clad the bar in our Terra Nova Bar, and will next be fitted to the main bar in our historic Captain Scott Room.
The historic connection with the Terra Nova has been held by the Sisters since moving to the Convent after the First World War. We also understand that the original owner of the house was a seafaring man and the use of ship’s timbers and furniture was a common practice in Cardiff at the time. We are proud to be able to continue this wonderful story.”
The Sister’s of St Josephs are pleased that the boards are going to a good home and know that the Royal will treasure them as much as they have.
The panels, restored to their former lustre, can now be seen surrounding the bar of the Terra Noval bar in the hotel.