Real Cardiff: The Flourishing City

Peter Finch
Publication Date: 
Tuesday, May 1, 2018
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‘The Real Cardiff books have always been the locals’ best guide to the city’
– Cardiff Life​

Utterly compelling ambles around the Welsh capital, full of oddball nuggets and with a terrific senses of context and place.’ – The Rough Guide to Wales

Discover more of Cardiff in this latest volume by Peter Finch, Real Cardiff – The Flourishing City. In it the Cardiffian continues his vigorous exploration of the obvious and hidden vistas of the city, discovering new treasures and revisiting past haunts to find them drastically altered over just ten years. The pace of change has never been quicker, surpassing the booms of the city’s nineteenth century heyday, and the clearances and redevelopment of the 1960s and 1970s.

Real Cardiff: The Flourishing City is a characteristically eclectic mix. Finch walks through the city and through his memories, locating the odd and the outlandish and measuring them against the everyday. Here are the last days of Dic Penderyn, a litany of rock and roll on Queen Street, the battle for the Vulcan pub, the lost mansions of the east, the culinary odyssey of City Road, Roald Dahl in Radyr, the Lido at Llandaff, the Coast Path, and a journey round the city’s mosques, among many another strolls and diversions.

Jan Morris called Real Cardiff  “one of the very best books about a city I have ever read”, and in this latest book Peter Finch has captured the essence of Cardiff again. This is vintage Finch, rolling with the city in the way that makes him its most acute – and funniest – commentator.




Review by Brian Lee, The Cowbridge Gem

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Cardiff author and expert Peter Finch continues his vigorous exploration of Wales’ capital city in his new book Real Cardiff: The Flourishing City (published by Seren at £9.99).
        He discovers new treasures and revisits past haunts to find them drastically altered over the past ten years. From lost rivers and vanished roads to what he calls the culinary odyssey of City Road, fro the ornate Mahogany Room above the Burger King to the new high rise city centre.
        The author of a number of books about Cardiff and a poet to boot, he proves himself to be the perfect guide through Cardiff ancient and modern in its everyday and outlandish glory. 
        Having been Peter’s guest on one of his walkabouts when we visited the site of the old Ely racecourse, home of the Welsh Grand National fro 1895-1939 and the site of the old Welsh White City Stadium in Grangetown where the famed Mick the Miller beat the world record when racing in the Welsh Derby, I can vouch for Peter’s love of his hometown.
        This book is an essential and entertaining insider’s guidebook by an author whose expertise on the city has been featured in Hidden Cardiff with Will Millard (the BBC’s popular documentary featured insight and appearances by Peter himself) and who is instrumental in sounding out the city’s cultural and artistic heartbeat.



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