Penarth Dock, South Wales - 150 years - the heritage and legacy  
Penarth Dock, South Wales - the heritage & legacy . . .

Index to Volume Seven - The People - Dock Family Trees - Locals; the ordinary and extraordinary characters . .

Polly of Penarth.

The following short poem was published during 1903 within the book 'Poetical & Humorous Works' relating to 'Powysland and North and South Wales' by Mr. George Fardo. [718] [716] I felt 'Polly of Penarth' very worthy of inclusion within our heritage story of Penarth Dock and Ely Tidal Harbour since, according to George, she was a 'crazy collier tramp' ! :

Polly of Penarth - poem - 1903

Polly of Penarth.


When sailing in and out of port,
And rounding Penarth Head,
O, don't I make my “ Siren "snort—
Enough to wake the dead.
For there is not a girl so smart
Twixt Penarth Head and Garth
As she who stole away my heart
Sweet Polly of Penarth.

My ship, a crazy collier tramp,
Sails like a lump of lead ;
She's leaky—always wet or damp—
And I must earn my bread.
But there's no girl so taut and straight
Twixt Penarth Head and Garth,
As she who makes my life so bright
Sweet Polly of Penarth !

And when I've made a few more trips
Across the stormy sea,
I'll sail no more away in ships
But live on shore with thee.
For go, or come, abroad, or home,
Twixt anywhere and Garth;
There's not a girl 'neath Heaven's Dome
Like Polly of Penarth.


Who was George Fardo? : He was postmaster of Cardiff and instrumental in opening the fine new post office building in Westgate in 1895. I can recall the architecture complete with a mosaic of the Welsh Dragon ; the building sadly closed as our main post office c.1983. After his days' work, he would spend time composing poetry, and found inspiration within Powysland and North and South Wales. Besides the above poem, apparently, his most inspired work was 'Caerphilly'. A romance, in which Fair Lily gazes down from a tower in Caerphilly castle to glimpse her loved one Willie, who rides a snow white filly. But the world thinks Lily silly and she frets lest Willie’s heart grows chilly! George was perhaps no Dylan Thomas, but he has managed to bring a wry smile to my grumpy old face!

In 1898 the South Wales Echo reported that George Fardo had been compelled to resign his post as postmaster through continued ill-health. During his nine years as postmaster at Cardiff he brought about great change and development of the service which were now considered second to none. The Mayor of Cardiff (Alderman J. Ramsdale) and the President of the Cardiff Chamber of Commerce felt his services should be publicly recognised. A public meeting was to be held in the Town Hall 'for the purpose of considering what steps, if any, shall be taken in the matter.' - South Wales Echo [163] [361] 9th September 1898.

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