Chinese laundries in Grangetown

Lee Lo, Grangetown Laundries, 1910 at 41 Corporation Road, Now demolished. Photo: CNP

Before washing machines become essential for most families, the laundry was a must-have, and Grangetown had several. The Grangetown Local History Society held a talk on Grangetown’s laundries last Friday at Glamorgan Archives.

Lee Low Sing, Grangetown Laundries, 1910 at 38 Paget Street. Now demolished. Photo: CNP

Lee Low Sing, Grangetown Laundries, 1910 at 88  Cornwall Street, Now demolished. Photo: CNP

The presenter of the talk, Zena Mabbs, has been researching the laundries in Grangetown and it is found out that some local laundries were run by Chinese people. She shared her research with the audience on where the old Chinese laundries were, how the working condition was like and why there were a number of Chinese people coming to Cardiff and started laundry as their career.

Several pictures of locations where there used to be Chinese laundries were shown at the talk and the history of these Chinese laundries were shared.

There was a Chinese laundry at 12 Holmesdale Street, which is located next to the Windsor Clive Meeting house. Kee Yong was running the laundry till 1920. Then, Thomas Cooper started to operate and changed the name to the Grange Laundry. In 1955, the owner became J. Warwick Confectionary Manufacturer.

Thomas Cooper, Grangetown Laundries at 12 Holmesdale street, 1920 (run by Kee Yong before)

Zena Mabbs said: ‘the main aim to hold this talk was to tell some of our new members that the history of our own Grangetown one hundred years ago, and to let them know that there were Chinese laundries in Grangetown as well as the well-known laundries in Grangetown at that time.  It also brings to their knowledge that old laundries buildings were demolished to make way for new housing, which is a thing going all cross Cardiff recently.’

Kee Yong, The Grange Laundry (next to the Windsor Clive Meeting House), Now demolished. Photo: CNP

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