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On 7th February 1971, a group of fifteen bird fanciers met at the Rose and Crown public house Old Cwmbran, with the view to form a new cage bird society. The aim was to promote the hobby and interest in keeping, breeding and exhibition of all types of cage and aviary birds. The meeting went well and the formation and naming of Cwmbran Newton Cage Bird Society was finally decided upon.

The founder members of the club were: Mr. R G Parry, Mr. I E Salter,
Mr. R Boucher, Mr. N Adams, Mr. W Adams, Mr. R Davage, Mr. R Burnett,
Mr. H Burnett, Mr. A Jones, Mr. G A Jones, Mr. G Jones, Mr. P Jenkins,
Mr. P Donovan, Mr. A R Roberts and Mr. A G Owen.

Sadly a number of these original members are no longer with us today, and are greatly missed by all who knew them. However we are honored that one of them is still a very active member of the society, and is our current Show Manager, Mr. R G Parry.

To become a member of the society at the time, it would cost the pricey sum of 50p for an adult, 75p for partnerships (each partner), OAP 25p, juniors 25p. The only stipulation to become a member was that you were a resident of the surrounding district, and had an interest in cage and aviary birds.

Meetings were held fortnightly initially on a Wednesday Night, and based at the Rose and Crown public house in Old Cwmbran. The meeting night was changed some time latter to a Thursday night at the request of the landlady.

At the second meeting the society was able to welcome its first lady member, Mrs. Williamson of Cwmbran who kept budgerigars. Not a meeting went by without what seemed at the time, an endless number of new members joining the society, this included juniors, something we see little of nowadays. Meetings took the form of table shows, with judging competitions and talks and slide shows by guest speakers.

From day one discussions had taken place on the organization of the societies first ever show. The new society was to hold its very first show, a Nest Feather Show, in conjunction with the annual Cwmbran Carnival, on June 12th 1971. However due to the inclement weather, a last minute change of venue had to be sort, not a very good initiation to shows, for the newly formed society and its members. Even so, an entry of 125 birds was received, and the members and committee, were overjoyed at the response they had following.

The society moved on to thinking about maybe a bigger show, at a venue which, all had become familiar with. Oldbury Hall, Old Cwmbran, was to be the venue of the societies venture to a larger Radius Show as it was called. The Hall had all the facilities required to hold such a show, with kitchen facilities available, which could assist in raising income into the club. The good ladies of the society, wives and girlfriends of the members being only too pleased to help, in providing light refreshments for the exhibitors, judges and visitors to the forthcoming show.

Cwmbran's second show was finally held on November 27th 1971, and received an entry of over 250 exhibits. During the following years the society progressed well, holding regular meetings and expanding the shows to 3 a year, including a members only show at the end of each season. Due to rising costs to hire Oldbury Hall on a Sunday, alternative venues were sort for the member's show in 1972. Actually moving to the nearby Saint Gabrielle's Church Hall.

Meetings had always been held at the Rose and Crown public house, but towards the end of 1972 venues changed, it seemed for each meeting. A number were held at the Show venue of Oldbury Hall, before settling in another Old Cwmbran public house The Halfway Hotel. However it was not long before the society was on the move yet again. In May 1973 the base for meetings was taken to the Pontnewydd area of Cwmbran, at the Council Offices. At about this time thoughts had also turned to building new staging for the society, this was carried out at the home of the then chairman Mr. I E Salter, also being stored free of charge on his property.

Towards the end of 1973 a decision was made to cancel all show dates booked at the Oldbiury Hall venue, and transfer all shows to the much better facilities of Woodland road, Sports & Social Centre, Croesyceiliog, Cwmbran.

The first show at the new venue was a Nest Feather Show held on 30th June 1974. This was followed soon afterwards by the Societies First Open Radius Show (Mon. CBA) on 26th October 1974. An entry of 330 exhibits was received and as reported at the time in the local press, the event proved to be a great success even though a number of exhibits may have been missing due to the bad moulting period.. The 3rd show of the year was the members show on the 16th November 1974. Facilities at the venue not only provided a large well lit hall for the bigger show, but also a smaller hall in an annex building for the Nest Feather and Members Shows.

In January 1974 the final decision was made to move all the business of the society to the Woodland road venue. It then became the headquarters of the society, with all shows and meetings taking place at the same place, the first meeting being held on 28th January 1974.

From the first days of the society, there had always been talk about holding an "Open Show" sometime in the future, but at this stage progress was made and experience gained in the type of shows the society was familiar with. Fund raising was also a major part of the society goals during this time jumble sale were still a source of revenue, together with sale days, and raffles at the societies meetings and events. All income was budgeted to pay for all the requisites of holding the shows, and hopefully to go towards a fund for the proposed Open Show. Cwmbran Newtown Cage Bird Society was also blessed with some very generous benefactors at this time, and offers to pay for trophies, rosettes, and prize cards, was never turned down. Like other societies we were not averse to accepting gifts to help us on our way.

The society had moved to a new venue with much better facilities, where it could hold not only its shows and events, but also its regular meetings. The new venue became its headquarters as it still is today. All meetings and shows were then organized for the new venue of Woodland Road, Sports & Social Centre, Croesyceiliog, Cwmbran, where the First Open Show was finally organized and held in 1975. The show took place on November 2nd 1975, and received an entry in excess of 640 exhibits benched. The society was over the moon with the response, and the decision was made to make the show a regular event on the show season calendar.


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