1958 (5th impress. 1967)
Goodrich Castle was placed in State Guardianship in 1920. The first official guidebook was prepared by C.A. Ralegh Radford, with a new edition in 1958. It consists of a history, with a section on periods of construction, then a description. A plan of the castle was included inside the guidebook at the start of the description.
1958 (9th impress. 1975)
The revised DOE blue guide has the foldout plan inside the back cover.
1993 (repr. 1999)
The English Heritage guidebook was prepared by Derek Renn (whose other guides included Framlingham Castle, Old Sarum and Shell Keeps). This starts with a tour of the castle, walks along the river Wye, and a history of Goodrich. A plan of the castle is placed in the centre of the guide.
Tintagel © David Gill
Tintagel Castle was placed in State Guardianship by the Duchy of Cornwall in 1930. C.A. Ralegh Radford prepared the first guide 1935, with a second edition in 1939. It is introduced with a summary, followed by a history, periods of construction of the castle, and then the description. A foldout plan is placed inside the back cover. The later MPBW guidebook had an additional plan of the island inside the back cover.
1939 (2nd ed., 10th impress. 1962)
1939 (2nd ed., 14th impress. 1969)
The English Heritage guidebook was written by Brian K. Davison. It contains three sections: Tour and Description; History of Tintagel; the Legend of King Arthur. A plan of the island is placed inside the back cover.
1999 (repr. 2002)
The Cathedral from the Bishop’s Palace, St Davids © David Gill
The Bishop’s Palace at St Davids was placed in State Guardianship in 1932. The official guidebook was prepared by C.A. Ralegh Radford. The first edition appeared in 1934, and the second edition in 1953. This starts with the history of the palace followed by a description of the remains. There is a foldout plan inside the back cover.
1953 (2nd ed.)
The blue guide continued into the 1970s as a DOE guide, published on behalf of the Welsh Office. On the title page (but not the cover) the Welsh title is provided: Llys yr Esgob Tyddewi. It included a reconstruction by Alan Sorrell. A summary in Welsh is provided at the back of the guide.
1953 (2nd ed.; 11th impress. with amendments, 1971)
The Cadw guide changed the title with the emphasis on St Davids (and note the dropping of the apostrophe). The author was by J. Wyn Evans, Dean of the neighbouring cathedral. It starts with ‘A Palace for Prelates: Historical Background’, and is followed by ‘A Tour of the Bishop’s Palace’. At the back is a section on ‘Bishops as Builders: a Summary of the Building History’ by Rick Turner. There is a plan of the palace inside the card rear cover. One page summarises the guide in Welsh.
The guide includes a section on St Non’s Chapel.
A revised version of the Wyn Evans and Turner guide was reissued in the larger Cadw format.
1991 (rev. 1999)
Caerwent © David Gill
The Roman town of Venta Silurum at Caerwent, Wales, has impressive walls as well as the excavated remains of some the public buildings.
The original Ministry guidebook was prepared by Oswin E. Craster. It follows the standard format of History and Description, with a foldout plan inside the back cover. The later editions contained a reconstruction of the town by Alan Sorrell.
This was replaced by a Cadw guide by Richard J. Brewer. This contained a history followed by a tour guide. There is a foldout plan inside the back card cover. There are numerous colour illustrations including finds from the site.
A second edition of the guide, in larger format, was published in 1997.
1993 (2nd ed. 1997)
A third edition in a yet larger format appeared in 2006. This contains details of recent excavations at the site.
The new guide also included a section on the nearby Llanmelin Wood Hillfort.
1993 (2nd ed. 1996; 3rd ed. 2006)
Corinth © David Gill
The American School of Classical Studies at Athens has published a new guidebook on Corinth. I have reviewed this for Bryn Mawr Classical Review [here].
The authors as well as the ASCSA design team have produced a highly functional guidebook to help lay and professional visitors to engage with the extensive excavated and visible remains. … This will be an invaluable aid to interpret what can be seen on the ground, and will serve as a model for guides to other archaeological sites.
The review gave me an opportunity to reflect on how to write a guidebook for such an extensive site. Roman urban sites in Britain such as Silchester and Caerwent have guides published by (respectively) English Heritage and Cadw.
1938 (2nd ed. 1950, 8th impress. 1973)
The first See of Moray was created in 1107. However the present location (juxta Elgyn) was only consecrated in July 1224 when it became the cathedral church of the diocese. The constitution of the cathedral was based on Lincoln. After the reformation the building fell into risrepair and the roof was removed in 1567.
The guidebook, subtitled, The Cathedral Kirk of Moray, was written by J.S. Richardson (description) and H.B. Mackintosh (history). A fold-out plan is placed inside the back cover.
1950 (8th impress. 1966)
The remains of the cathedral at St Andrews were placed in State Guardisanship in 1946. Stewart Cruden prepared the first guidebook for The Cathedral of St. Andrews and St. Regulus Church (1950) (although the cover only shows the shorter form).
It starts with an extensive glossary, The guide is divided into two sections, each divided into history and description: first on St Regulus church, second on the cathedral. A plan of the cathedral is placed in the centre pages, and a fold-put plan of the precinct appears inside the back cover.
1993 (revised 2003; repr. 2007)
The Historic Scotland official souvenir guide was prepared by Richard Fawcett, and was subsequently revised by Sally Foster and Chris Tabraham. This has a guided tour followed by the story of the cathedral.