Charles Tanfield Vachell (1848-1914)

Welsh physician and naturalist. Born in Cardiff, Charles Vachell attended Hereford Cathedral School where he developed an interest in field botany. Studying to become a medical practitioner at London University he graduated and returned to Cardiff where he practised as a physician. A keen amateur naturalist he helped to set up the Cardiff Naturalists Society and served as its secretary for ten years, as well as its president on four separate occasions.

In 1903 his plan to expand upon Storrie's Flora of Wales began to take shape and a committee was formed within the society. Vachell and his daughter, an accomplished botanist in her own right, acted as secretaries. The group started work on the Flora of Glamorganshire which was published in five sections between 1906 and 1910.

Vachell was also behind the creation of the Cardiff Municipal Museum and, when it became the National Museum of Wales, he was a member of their council from 1908. Another great achievement of Vachell's was his involvement in the creation of a botanic garden at Roath Park. Always a keen field botanist he spent much of his holiday time in search of plant specimens which he cultivated or used to enrich his beloved herbarium. Vachell often collected alongside his daughter and exchange material from the 'Vachell' herbarium was from the joint collections of C.T. Vachell and E. Vachell, but the individual collector is not apparent.

Vatchell was living at 11 Park Place when he died and was buried on 6th July 1914 Plot L1549a. Alick Henderson presided over his funeral as Conformist minister.