Well, funny how life gets in the way. I forgot the kids were off school for Easter when I arrange the museum trip, but anyway we all three went to see the crossbow collection - the kids were brilliant, but scooping everyone out of the door led to my forgetting the batteries for the camera! Apologies for the quality of the snaps which you can see at my flickr feed, here. but the ipod was all I had that worked.
The entire Welsh museums collection, with the possible exception of a 'bow belonging to Lloyd George which MAY exist in a musum in north wales, numbers three 18th and 19th century (?) bows. A very nice Johnson Wigan ball-throwing bow and a Flemish target bow of unknown date, presumed mid 18th century- I included several pictures of the trigger mechanism for anyone who may be interested.
There was also a bit of a mystery, described as an English arrow-throwing crossbow, very long and slender with a brass nut and wide, shallow steel prod (the curator feels this is a replacement), the bindings are rotted away long ago (unless the irons are missing) and the stock was at one time badly chewed by wood worm.
If anyone wants proper notes on any of these I will arrange another visit.