About Llandudno Museum
Llandudno Museum and Art Gallery is responsible for a unique collection which tells the story of Llandudno over 340 million years. Our museum was founded by Francis Edouard Chardon. In 1925. Chardon bequeathed his home, Rapallo House, and his collection of decorative and fine arts and artefacts to Llandudno for the enjoyment of the people.
Over 9,000 artefacts, covering 5 broad areas
Natural history and geology, local decorative and fine art, social history, and military history.
Explore Llandudno’s History
Natural history and geology; local decorative and fine art, social history and military history
The Museum collections totals 9,000 artefacts and falls into 5 broad areas covering: natural history and geology; local decorative and fine art; social history and military history. Together the collections build up a picture of the development of our seaside resort that is resonant for local visitors and places the locality into context for tourists. It reflects a truly international collection that is rare and distinctive for such a small regional Museum. We are also considered to have a selection of some of the finest archaeological collections held in an independent museum in Wales. These collections include: Roman artefacts; a Neolithic skeleton and prehistoric tools; bone and pottery, recovered from the Great Orme Copper Mines, the largest mine in Europe.
Francis Edouard Chardon
1865 – 1925
The story of Llandudno Museum & Gallery begins with Francis Edouard Chardon. Born in 1865 in Calcutta, India, Chardon was the privileged son of a wealthy family who made their fortune in the trade of Indigo dye. Chardon was brought to England when he was seven years of age. At this time, he began his general education at All Souls Grammar School in London and later completed seminaries in France and Germany. Chardon spent several years living in Naples where he studied pastel drawing and watercolour painting, under the guidance of the renowned Neapolitan artist Joseph Casciaro.
During his interesting and well-travelled life, Chardon collected objects and artworks from all over the world. When he died in 1925, Chardon left his home Rapallo House, and its contents to the people of Llandudno for their enjoyment and education.
In 1926 the Chardon Trust began management of Rapallo House and Gallery, this later became the Llandudno Museum and Gallery in 1995 when it moved to Gloddaeth Street. The museum expanded to include the adjacent property, Arfon Villa. The expansion was to implement improvements that addressed key gaps in provision including: the creation of a dedicated family-friendly space for learning and community use; installation of improved ancillary equipment; a new lift for better access: a larger improved permanent exhibition space, and the creation of a new gallery for temporary exhibitions.
We intend to establish Llandudno Museum and Gallery as a key all-weather heritage attraction in North Wales. Expansion and improved facilities will ensure we will inspire our local community within Conwy County Borough and visitors from across Wales, the UK and beyond, to explore the unique story of our nationally significant heritage resort town. We will fulfil its potential as a cultural destination of excellence, support for the local economy through job creation, and to also realise its educational potential.
Museum Director & Curator
Dawn Lancaster is a heritage professional with degrees in Archaeology, Historic Landscape Studies M.A. and a research M.Phil. Prior to joining the Llandudno Museum and Gallery,Dawn worked on several projects for The Churches Conservation Trust. Her hobbies include collecting brooches, 18th & 19th century novels, and historic wallpaper.
Community & Education Officer
Dr DeAnn Bell is responsible for school visits, student placements, museum education, and community events. She has an extensive background in university and community teaching and holds a PhD from Bangor University, is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, a member of Women’s Archives Wales, and the National Association of Writers in Education.
Social Media & Volunteer Co-ordinator
Our Trustee, Huw Pritchard, is responsible for recruiting and managing our team of enthusiastic volunteers. Huw also manages our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts. A former librarian and information manager, Huw lives in Gyffin. He is a fluent Welsh-speaker.
Chardon Trust: Charity number: 217013
Llandudno Museum and Gallery: Charity number: 1188826