Tiger Bay: Search to find people recorded by Butetown History and Arts Centre

Collections / Discover Sound - Posted 29-10-2021

We need your help! The Unlocking Our Sound Heritage Project (UOSH) and the Tiger Bay Heritage and Cultural Exchange Organisation is working with freelancers to create a new piece of work inspired by the ‘Tiger Bay and the Rainbow Club’ film and oral histories recorded from the area. We are trying to locate relatives of interviewees who were recorded by the late Butetown History and Arts Centre.

Unlocking Our Sound Heritage is a five-year project, funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and led by the British Library. The project aims to preserve and provide access to sound recordings across the UK. Ten Network Audio Preservation Centres have been established across the UK and have received funding for three years to deal with the threat facing sound recordings. The project has focused on digitising and preserving rare unique sound recordings, those that are under threat of physical deterioration and those at risk of being lost because the playback equipment is no longer available.

One of the collections digitised by the National Library of Wales consists of oral history recordings relating to people who (used to) live and work in Tiger Bay, or Butetown, and the Cardiff Docks. The interviews conducted between 1984 and 2000 includes several projects such as life histories, Artists interviews, Second World War, Somali Elders and much more.

“The aim of digitising these oral histories is to preserve and make them accessible for future generations. Tiger Bay has developed over the Centuries and the past can now be heard by the voices of the community themselves” Alison Smith, Unlocking Our Sound Heritage Hub Project Manager.

“The Heritage & Cultural Exchange is a community based organisation that actively encourages the participation of local people in the development of, and the ongoing use of the collection of oral history tapes and photographs so that everyone can see the achievements and tenacity of their ancestors. We tell the stories of the people who lived and worked in the Docks to schools, colleges and through exhibitions.

We want the world to know we are here and have been for a very long time.

The Heritage & Cultural Exchange wants to give full credit and show respect to those who shared their stories but we need help to identify some of them or their living relatives. Can you help us?” Gaynor Legall, Chair Tiger Bay Heritage & Cultural Exchange

These interviews are a significant piece of the city’s diverse history heard by the voices of everyday people from the Tiger Bay area. This call out is for interviewees or their relatives in order for us to use part of their stories. Do you have any information about James Sapo Mannay, Ronald Jenkins, Joan Duggan, Katie Anderson Johnson, Abbas Abdullah, Christopher Stevens, Sunday and Eva Dennis and Harry Jarret? If so, please contact us on

This post is also available in: Welsh

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