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National Library of Wales
Western Mail & Echo Ltd, records

Reference code(s): GB 0210 WESCHO

Held at: National Library of Wales

Title: Western Mail & Echo Ltd Records

Short Title: Western Mail & Echo Ltd, records

Creation date(s): 1869-1980

Level of description: Fonds

Extent: 0.158 cubic metres (8 boxes, 28 volumes)

Name of creator(s): Western Mail & Echo Ltd


Administrative/Biographical history: The Western Mail was founded in Cardiff, Glamorgan, in 1869 by the Marquess of Bute, initially intended as a Conservative newspaper. From 1869 to 1901, its editor was Henry Lascelles Carr (d. 1902). In 1877, Bute sold the paper to Carr and Daniel Owen. In 1884, the owners formed Daniel Owen and Co. Ltd as a joint stock company, which became Western Mail Ltd in 1896. In 1877 it also started to publish the Evening Express. In 1893, a fire destroyed the original Western Mail building in St Mary's Street, and a new building was opened in 1895. Carr was succeeded as editor in 1901 by William Davies, who had been assistant editor since 1894; he remained editor until 1931. In 1928, the Western Mail lost its independence when William and Gomer Berry of Allied Newspapers acquired a controlling share. In the same year, Western Mail Ltd was amalgamated with David Duncan & Sons, which had been publishing the South Wales Daily News from 1872 and the South Wales Echo since 1884, and the company became Western Mail and Echo Ltd. As a result of the merger, the less successful Evening Express and South Wales Daily News papers came to an end. In 1960, the newspapers left St Mary's Street and moved to Thomson House, Cardiff. The business is now owned by Trinity Mirror PLC, and Western Mail and Echo Ltd is an operating company in its Regionals Division. The Western Mail has a tradition of organising popular appeals for funds to assist Welsh causes, including the Owen Rhoscomyl Memorial Fund (1919), Mumbles Lifeboat Disaster Fund (1947), Llanddow Air Disaster Fund (1950), and Six Bells Colliery Disaster Fund (1960).


Scope and content/abstract: Records of Western Mail & Echo Ltd and related companies, 1869-1980, including advertisement and circulation revenue, 1869-1899; deeds of partnership of Owen and Carr, 1878; records of Daniel Owen & Co. Ltd, 1884-1895; Western Mail Ltd ledgers, registers, cash books and registers of member shares, 1896-1936; David Duncan & Sons Ltd, private ledgers, cash books and journals, 1906-1930, and liquidator's record book, 1929-1930; papers relating to the amalgamation of Western Mail Ltd with David Duncan & Sons, 1928-1931; miscellaneous papers and correspondence, 1893-1950; papers relating to the Weterns Mail Mumbles Lifeboat disaster fund and the Six Bells disaster fund, 1948-1964; and managing director's monthly reports, 1966-1978.


Language/scripts of material: English

System of arrangement: Arranged into the following: volumes; general; amalgamation of Western Mail Ltd with David Duncan & Sons; and general.

Conditions governing access: Readers consulting modern papers in the National Library of Wales are required to sign the 'Modern papers - data protection' form.

Conditions governing reproduction: Usual copyright regulations apply.

Finding aids: A hard copy of the catalogue is available in Minor Lists and Summaries, 1987, pp. 121-124, at the National Library of Wales. The catalogue is available online.

Detailed catalogue


Appraisal, destruction and scheduling information: All records donated to the National Library of Wales have been retained.

Accruals: Accruals are possible.

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition: Donated by the Western Mail & Echo Ltd, Thompson House, Westgate Street, Cardiff, per Mr Elis Evans, Llanfihangel Crucornau, Gwent, formerly Deputy Managing Director, 1986.



Note: Title supplied from contents of fonds.

Archivist's note: Compiled by Rhys Jones for the ANW project. The following sources were used to compile this description: NLW, Minor Lists and Summaries, 1987; Cosslett, John, History Behind the Headlines: the story of Western Mail & Echo Ltd and its newspapers (Cardiff, 1996).

Rules or conventions: This description follows ANW guidelines based on ISAD(G) second edition, AACR2 and LCSH.

Date(s) of descriptions: May 2003

Daniel Owen & Company | Archives
David Duncan and Sons | Archives
Disaster relief | Wales | Mumbles
Disaster relief | Wales | Six Bells colliery (Monmouthshire)
Newspaper publishing | Wales
Wales | Newspapers
Welsh newspapers | Wales | Cardiff | Archives
Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales) | Archives

Personal names

Corporate names
Daniel Owen & Co.
David Duncan & Sons
South Wales Echo
Western Mail & Echo Ltd
Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Western Mail Ltd

Cardiff (Wales)

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