Denbigh is a town with a rich history. It has reputedly the longest list of historic buildings recorded in Wales.
But nestling among woodland on the outskirts of the town is a unique collection of more modern times. The Cae Dai Trust museum. Directed by its founder Sparrow Harrison MBE, it is a unique collection of memorabilia from the post WW2 years.
Great Train Robbers too.
For instance the lorry used by the Great Train Robbers to carry away their rich loot of bank notes. A Pink Cadillac and other vintage cars. And not to forget the bewildering collection of memorabilia so familiar to those whose early years spanned the nineteen forties and fifties.
My eye in particular was drawn to the rubber protection casing used for small babies during the war in the event of a gas attack. I well remember one of those in my own childhood home. Fortunately the need never arose for my baby sister to be placed into one of those!
A native of Denbigh, Sparrow himself has a fascinating background recorded in the article below from the North Wales Weekly News. From London in the swinging sixties, to his association with some of the darker characters of London society, Sparrow also has a commendable record of service to others recognized in his recent award of the MBE
Recovery from Arson attack.
In 2009 his life-long passion for collecting suffered a severe blow when an arson attack virtually wiped out his entire collection.
After five years of back-breaking endeavor, and the generosity of others, the museum was re-opened in early 2015. Apart from its museum, the Cae Dai Trust charity provides a supportive environment for vulnerable individuals recovering from a range of social problems.
No trip to Denbigh should be complete without a visit to Cae Dai. You can expect a warm reception from Sparrow and his colleagues – and be pleasantly surprised by the range of treasures on view.
And Sparrow’s a keen cyclist too. I’ve met him several times in the lanes of Vale of Clwyd. Last time he was at the side of the road with a puncture! But of one thing we can say of Sparrow – punctures never dampened his enthusiasm for the life-time tasks he’s set his mind to – and delivered upon!