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This is the English version of the 2006 centenary booklet for the Société Franco-Britannique de Cardiff, created as part of the society's centenary celebrations.

The booklet details the history of the Société Franco-Anglaise de Cardiff from its foundation in 1906 until 1995 when the society changes its name to the Société Franco-Britannique de Cardiff. The booklet includes a transcript of a talk given in 1999 by Arlette Ragody-Hughes who joined the society in 1938 and served as president in 1981-2 and 1982-3. There are also contributions from Russel Jones who became a member of the society in 1939 and was president in 1949-51.

The booklet describes the early history of the society, including its creation by founding members Professor Barbier, Max Wideman and W. E. Thomas in 1906, how the society came to be based at 36 Park Place for 40 years from 1918, the installation of a telephone, electric lighting and a gas fire on the premises and the acquisition of a number of pianos. It also details notable people who were patrons or associated with the society, including Lloyd George who was honorary president of the society. There is also information about social events, such as the annual ball, the 25th anniversary dinner, a trip to St. Fagans.

The booklet documents the difficulties faced by the society during the Second World War. When war broke out in 1939 it was decided that meetings would take place every fortnight at 3pm due to the difficulties with transport and lighting and there would be no printed programmes. Women in the society made clothes to send to the soldiers on the front. Their headquarters at 36 Park Place was damaged by air raids. After the war the regular programme of talks, reading groups and social events resumed. In 1981 the society held a dinner at Cardiff Castle to mark their 75th anniversary.

The booklet also contains information about more recent activities of the Société Franco-Britannique de Cardiff. This section was written by John Martin. During this time there were several changes of location and the name change in 1995. There is a list of the destinations of the annual trip to France for the years between 1997-2006 and some accompanying photographs. There are also photographs of social events and outings during the 1990s and early 2000s.

Also contained in the booklet are biographies of the three founding memories and a selection of programme cards from the society’s history.

The Société Franco-Anglaise was established in 1906 to promote friendly British-French relations by encouraging people to learn about French culture and study the French language. This was particularly important when the society was founded as many French people came to Cardiff as part of the shipping and coal industries and to learn English. The society existed through two world wars which meant many members had to work towards the war effort, either on the front or at home. Its library of French books, French plays and celebrations of French festivals, such as the Fête de Noël, Fête de Rois and Mardi Gras, have attracted many British and French members over the years. In 1995 the Société Franco-Anglaise de Cardiff changed its name to Société Franco-Britannique de Cardiff. The society, which is a registered charity, is still active today organising lectures in French and social events, such as parties, picnics, visits to tourist attractions. Since 1997 the society has run an annual coach trip to France. Destinations have included Paris, Brittany and Champagne.

Glamorgan Archives, D593/11/1

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