History of the Old Library & Moorland Gardens (park)

In July 1891 the Cardiff Council Parks Committee agreed to accept a gift of land of some 1½ acres in Splott from Lord Tredegar for the open space that became Moorland Gardens. The gift was subject to the Council enclosing the land and paying half the cost of constructing the roads surrounding it. These roads were Singleton Road, Hinton Street and Moorland Road. The formal conveyance was completed in December 1891 and at the Council’s request included permission to build a branch library on part of the land. Subsequently it was agreed that the branch library would be built on the portion fronting Adeline Street, the extension of Singleton Road. The cost of the library was met by private subscriptions, to which Lord Tredegar and the Marquis of Bute both contributed.

The boundary fencing was erected during 1893-94, and the levelling, laying out and planting was completed by October 1894. The plot reserved for the Splott Branch Library (now known as the Old Library), which was built at the same time, was 75 feet by 40 feet.] The Library was officially opened on 16th October 1894 and was the first purpose built library (reading rooms) in Cardiff. A caretaker’s shelter for the open space was incorporated into the building.

The Gardens and Library were formally opened to the public on May 30th 1895. The Parks Committee planned to add a bandstand, but the Council did not approve the expenditure and the Committee agreed in January 1896 to abandon the plan. Nevertheless bands were engaged to play at Moorland Gardens when the Council decided in 1902 to provide band music in the parks. When the much larger Splott Park was created nearby a bandstand was placed there.

Moorland Gardens

Moorland Gardens had no bowling greens or tennis courts – these were provided at Splott Park from 1906 – but there were walks and flower beds. In 1920 it was decided that all the flower beds except for three large central beds would be filled in to allow space for children to play. A. Pettigrew wrote in 1932 that practically the whole Garden was a playgound. In 1930 the Library was extended and refurbished.

Tredegar & Bute Suites

The Old Library Has a number of excellent rooms for hire. The rooms are available from 9am to midnight every day of the week and can be used for all purposes.

Hire a Space




Food Special


Old Illtydian RFC