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These photographs show the front of the Cathedral Road Synagogue. Four photographs show the foundation stone and three of the four cornerstones. The other two show the front entrance door and a detail of the arch. Although the front remains, the rest of the building has been converted into office units.

The ceremony to lay the foundation stones is described in the Jewish Chronicle, 1 May 1896, on pages 18-19:


The ceremony of laying the foundation stone and corner stones of the new Synagogue in Cathedral Road, Cardiff, took place on Wednesday afternoon in the presence of a large assembly of guests. Col. GOLDSMID presided over the proceedings..." The article then lists those present, including Lord Windsor (Mayor of Cardiff), Lord Tredegar, The Rev. Dr H. Adler (the Chief Rabbi), Mr J. M. Maclean, MP, and numerous others including Mr Delissa Joseph (the architect) and the town clerk Mr J. L. Wheatley.

After two psalms, Colonel Goldsmid laid the foundation stone, and the four cornerstones were laid by the Chief Rabbi, Lord Windsor (Lord Lieutenant of Glamorgan as well as Mayor of Cardiff), Lord Tredegar and the MP Mr J. M. Maclean. These were then presented with a silver trowel each.

The Chief Rabbi then delivered an address.

“Mr. B. JACOBS, Hon. Secretary, read some letters of apology, and a list of subscriptions amounting in the aggregate to about £1,400, the principal donors being Mr. P. Phillips, £200; Messrs’ Samuel Brothers, £250; Mrs. Lionel Lucas, £100; Mr. Sol. Barnett, £52 10s.; Mr. S. Blaiberg, £31 10s.; Messrs. C. Follick, S. Blaiberg (Cardiff), M. Barnett, A. Finkelstone, and B. Jacobs, 25 guineas each ; and Mrs, Montefiore (Brighton), £25. Colonel GOLDSMID, who was received with applause, then delivered a brief address.” The other stone layers also made speeches and thanks were offered before the meeting terminated.

The article continues:

"In the evening a banquet was given by the Building and Collecting Committee at the Jewish Institute, Cardiff, which was decorated for the occasion. Colonel GOLDSMID presided, and was supported by all the leading members of the congregation, as well as several visitors. The arrangements for the dinner were superintended most successfully by several ladies of the congregation. The loyal toasts having been honoured, the Rev. J. ABELSON proposed the health of the Chief rabbi, which was received with much heartiness.”

The article continues with more details of the banquet.

The Cathedral Road Synagogue opened in 1897. These photographs are part of a collection taken by Alan Schwartz prior to the closure of the synagogue in 1989. They are reproduced with the permission of his brother Anthony Schwartz.

Depository: The photographs of the front door and the Goldsmid foundation stone are in Cardiff United Synagogue. The others have been deposited with Glamorgan Archives.

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