MONTY SMITH’S FAMILIAR ROVER & MG EMBLEMS LEAVE PENARTH

The MG Rover sign is lowered for the last time at the former Monty Smith garage in WIndsor Road Penarth

The MG Rover sign is lowered for the last time at the former Monty Smith garage in Windsor Road Penarth. It’s to be preserved by the son of the founder as a memento of the once-thriving business (Photo John Clark)

The massive sign bearing the logos of Rover and MG is to be preserved

The massive sign bearing the logos of Rover and MG as it was in situ

Although planning permission is still pending for the demolition of the former Monty Smith car garage and car showrooms at Windsor Road , Penarth -an “iconic” feature of the dealership has already gone.

The tall illuminated tower-sign which bore the “Rover” and “MG” logos was taken down yesterday by Andrew Smith, the son of the founder, as a memento of his late father.

Andrew Smith who inherited the business from his father Monty Monty Smith

Andrew Smith who inherited the business from his father Monty Smith

Andrew had made arrangements with the owners of the site to remove the big sign,  which has been a familiar feature of the Penarth townscape for many years.

Andrew Smith - son of founder Monty Smith surveys the sign before its loaded onto a trailer to be taken away

Andrew Smith – son of founder Monty Smith surveys the sign before it’s loaded onto a trailer (Photo John Clark)

Andrew  Smith said that every time he passed the garage he had felt sad –  but at least now has the sign as a permanent souvenir of what was once one of the best-known businesses in Penarth .

There to help him were his son Tristan Smith and friend Martin Lewis. The team managed to uproot the sign manually and  lower it onto a large trailer .

The sign will be restored and installed at Mr Smith’s new business premises off Penarth Road.

As previously reported on PDN a planning application has been made to demolish the entire building and build one – possibly two  – new retail units on the site

Originally the building had been a cinema – the Windsor Kinema – where many Penarthians may remember once watching the 1956 movie “Rock Around the Clock ” ( an early rock’n’roll film starring Bill Haley and the Comets)  which prompted the audience to jive in the aisles.

The Windsor Kinema was opened in 1914 and is pictured here in 1923 - still in the silent film era

The Windsor Kinema was opened in 1914 and is pictured here in 1923 – still in the silent film era. The cast iron railings were appropriated for scrap during WW2

The original 800-seater Windsor Kinema was designed by Lennox Robertson and built for Oliver Willmore by local builder John Britton. It first opened on Monday February 2nd 1914 – and showed silent films like the one advertised in the posters in the photo. [The movie was Dorothy Dalton starring as a twin-holstered gunfighter in a western called “The Crimson Challenge” . The posters claimed the film “teems and tingles with thrills” .]

The cinema closed in May 1958 . The frontage was demolished and the auditorium, was converted into a two-storey car showroom with a concrete first floor supported on internal pillars.

About NewsNet

Penarth Daily News email address dmj@newsnet.uk . Penarth Daily News is an independent free on-line fair and balanced news service published by NewsNet Ltd covering the town of Penarth in the Vale of Glamorgan, Wales, UK. All our news items are based on the information we receive or discover at the time of publication and are published on the basis that they are accurate to the best of our knowledge and belief at that time.
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3 Responses to MONTY SMITH’S FAMILIAR ROVER & MG EMBLEMS LEAVE PENARTH

  1. AK says:

    Glad to see the Robert Smith’s decrepit old van has also been removed from the bushes at Cogan station car park.

  2. snoggerdog says:

    thank you for that PDN,i remember a “jungle jim”film gave me nightmares for a week after seeing it with my dad,my best mate derek can always recall the commisionaires name but i never can he had a brill uniform and wore a deaf aid , or so us callow youths called him the bloke with a cork in his ear !

  3. What is happening to the other Smith showroom it has been empty for a very long time and looks horrible when you enter Penarth.

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