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  • Writer's pictureKip

Llanharan Spaniels

After much thought and deliberation and in line with other Teams in our area, we have decided to call our 2nd Team/Development Team the Llanharan Spaniels. Pencoed Rams, Beddau Chuckles and Tondu Rangers are just some of the names our neighbours have called their 2nd Teams

Some people may be wondering what a spaniel has to do with Llanharan RFC. Here's an explanation from Life Member Hugh Smith:

Look at the Llanharan RFC badge and in one of the quadrants you will see a canine emblem. It is actually symbolic, representative of a breed of dog known as the Llanharan Spaniel. This was an acknowledged sub species of the better-known springer spaniel, similar in many ways, but often sporting a small patch in the centre of its forehead. It became known as ‘The Llanharan Spot’, or ‘Penny on the head, Llanharan bred’.

The Llanharan version was officially recognised by the Kennel Club in 1902, and the first dog on its register was ‘Ch Corrin bred and whelped at Llanharan House by Colonel Blandy-Jenkins in 1893  (more probably, however, by his gamekeeper, William Jenkins, and his sons Abraham and Elias who lived in the Mill House). The Llanharan strain of Welsh Springer Spaniels was one of the most significant – and successful – kennels of the breed.

Just across the trailway bridge from Llanharan House the original dwellings and buildings known as ‘The Kennels’ still stand. They also housed a pack of hounds used in local fox hunting.

The spaniel was noted for being ‘one of the finest retrievers of fur or feather’. It is thought that the breed is now virtually extinct. One of the last surviving dogs belonged to the late butcher Reggie Smith, grandfather of Rob Smith.

So there we have it, it's not a Ram a Chuckle or a Ranger, it's a Spaniel!

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