Back in Cardiff’s early days, any students who fancied enjoying the warm weather with a picnic would have to give it some serious consideration. Picnics were highly regulated in the rules and regulations of the University College of South Wales and Monmouthshire (as Cardiff University was then known):
These rules are emblematic of the very different degree of freedom students were able to experience at the time. The University College was concerned about the behaviour of its students both inside and outside campus. An even greater concern was felt over the moral position of female students who could not attend picnics without the consent of the Principal of Aberdare Hall (Cardiff’s all-female hall of residence). The University felt a duty to look after the young people within its care. Consequently, picnics had to be planned meticulously, consent obtained and rules adhered to.
Having a picnic in 1900s Cardiff was, in fact, no picnic!