Castle Concert Links with Patagonia (30-07-2018)

A special concert will be held in Cardigan Castle later this month to support a new Welsh-medium school, one that has been established more than 7,000 miles away in Patagonia.

The artistes taking part are tenors Rhys Meirion, Aled Wyn Davies and Alejandro Jones, together with a group of local harpists. They will perform free of charge, and all proceeds will be donated to Ysgol y Cwm, which was opened in Trevelin, the small town situated at the foot of the Andes.
The concert will be held on Friday, 31 August, at 7.00 pm under the auspices of Cardigan / Trevelin Twinning Committee.
Rhys Meirion, one of Wales's leading international tenors, has close associations with Patagonia. It is no surprise that, as a former teacher, he is very supportive of Welsh education ventures in the country. On one of his concert tours he raised money to support another Welsh school in Patagonia, Ysgol yr Hendre, in Trelew.
Tenor Aled Wyn Davies also is no stranger to Patagonia. On his second visit there he was guest soloist on a three-week concert tour with Côr Godre'r Aran, the famous Llanuwchllyn choir.
Aled had long been appearing on international concert platforms before Rhys Meirion invited him in 2014 to join himself and Aled Hall as the third member of the Three Welsh Tenors.
Although Aled is constantly on-call as a singer, he still finds time to farm at his home in Llanbrynmair.
The other soloist is also a farmer, but Alejandro Jones farms in far-away Trevelin. He is a direct descendant of adventurer John Daniel Evans, who sailed on the Mimosa, in 1865 along with 153 Welsh men, women and children, to establish a Welsh settlement in Patagonia.
Alejandro, whose first language is Spanish, learnt to sing Welsh songs as a child on his grandfather's knee. Since he made his first vist to Wales in 2005, he has become a fluent Welsh speaker.
Clwb Telyn Castell Aberteifi (Cardiff Castle Harp Club) are the instrumentalists appearing in the concert. The group was formed four years ago by Meinir Heulyn, one of Wales's foremost harp teachers, who was inspired on seeing the castle's completed restoration work.
They have already won in competition - at last year's Cerdd Dant festival in Llandysul.
Tickets for the concert, at £10, and £5 for children, are available at Theatr Mwldan. Phone: 01239 621200. Or on-line:


Scholarships for learners from Patagonia (02-02-2018)

Three scholarships, worth £ 2,000 each, are available to learners from Patagonia to study Welsh in Wales this summer.

The scholarships are funded by the National Centre for Learning Welsh and will enable three people from Patagonia to spend a month studying at either Cardiff University or Aberystwyth University, two of the Centre’s providers.

Applicants for the scholarships must be at least at Intermediate level and have already shown a commitment to learning the language. The scholarships are administered by the British Council and are available on their website The application forms should be completed and sent to by 1 March 2018.
Following a stay in Wales to improve their language skills, learners will be expected to actively use the language on their return home, contributing to the life of the Welsh community in Patagonia, whether activities or classes.

One who has benefited in the past from a scholarship like this is Noe Sanchez Jenkins who works as a teacher at the Andes Welsh School. Noe spent a month at Aberystwyth University in 2017.

She said:
“I learnt a lot on the summer course this year. I learnt about Wales, the history, the poetry, the culture and language. I enjoyed being in Aberystwyth, and I had the opportunity to use my Welsh during all the activities. The course itself was very interesting, and I made friends with lot of other Welsh learners from countries such as Japan, Austria and France.

“The best thing about the experience was that we had to use the Welsh language all the time! It was also great to spend time in the country where my ancestors used to live.”

Efa Gruffudd Jones, Chief Executive of the National Centre for Learning Welsh, said:

"We're very excited to offer this scholarship to three people from Patagonia who want to come to Wales to learn and improve their Welsh. We're proud of the unique relationship between Wales and Argentina, and we’re delighted to offer assistance to ensure the language remains part of community life in Patagonia. "
For more information contact Hawys Roberts, Chief Communications Officer National Centre for Learning Welsh on 01970 621565 or

Picture: Efa Gruffudd Jones, Chief Executive of the National Centre for Learning Welsh, with Alcira Williams, Noe Jenkins and Mariel Jones in the Aberystwyth University's Summer School 2017. The three from Patagonia won scholarships to learn Welsh in Wales over the summer

New strategy needed to connect with Welsh expats (14-08-2017)

In a speech on the National Eisteddfod field in Ynys Môn, the local Assembly Member has called for a clear strategy from Welsh Government to connect with the Welsh Diaspora. He said that Wales could

Whilst delivering the Wales International annual speech, the AM, who chairs the Cross-Party Group, Wales International, in the Assembly, said:

“Wales has been generous with her exports, her coal, slate and iron have left their mark on the four cornerns of the world, but the exports we can still benefit from them are our people.”

He compared Wales’ situation to that of Ireland and Scotland, who have clear strategies on connecting with their diaspora. Since 2014, the Irish Government have a Minister responsible for developing the relationship with the Irish abroad. The Scottish Government have held two ‘Homecoming Scotland’ projects to persuade members of the Scottish diaspora to reconnect with their homeland.

Rhun ap Iorwerth said that Welsh Government is trying in a number of different ways to build foriegn connections, including with the Welsh diaspora, but according to Ynys Môn’s AM, a clear strategy is needed to tie everything together and to set clear goals:

“We need our own Homecoming Scotland, we need our own Diaspora Minister as they have in Ireland. We need to take this seriously, to show beyond any doubt that we see this as a priority.”

The Welsh Patagonian Settlement: a feast of viewing on YouTube (08-06-2017)

In 2015 the Welsh Settlement in Patagonia celebrated a major milestone in its history, namely the 150th anniversary of its establishment in 1865. To mark this, an international conference on the his

One notable feature of the conference was that about half of the speakers were born and raised in Argentina. This was the first time for so many experts from Wales and Argentina to come together to discuss the Settlement, and it provided an unrivalled opportunity to view the Settlement, past, present and future, through the eyes of people from both sides of the Atlantic.

The papers delivered at the conference – 14 in all – are now available on Cardiff University’s YouTube channel.

Some were delivered in Welsh, some in English and one in Spanish. Here is a list in alphabetical order of speaker:

Eirionedd Baskerville: Richard Jones Berwyn: gŵr amryddawn, bonheddig a chymwynasgar

Walter Ariel Brooks: Y Drafod: prif bapur newydd Cymraeg y Wladfa, 1891–2015

David Leslie Davies: ‘Holl daith yr anialwch i gyd’: profiad y Gwladfãwyr cynharaf

E. Wyn James: Eluned Morgan a Diwygiad 1905

Bill Jones: Cymru, Patagonia ac ymfudo

Vilma Nanci Jones: Galés patagónico: estampas de una biografía casi sesquicentenaria

Nadine Laporte: Gamechangers: the women who made Y Wladfa possible

Esyllt Nest Roberts de Lewis: Cyfrolau’n siarad: dirgelion llyfrgell Coleg Camwy, Y Gaiman

Llŷr Gwyn Lewis: Darllen y map: ysgrifennu creadigol yn y Wladfa

Geraldine Lublin: ‘Wi, wi, am Ŵyl y Glaniad’: y gymuned Gymreig yn Chubut a dathliad yr 28ain o Orffennaf

Elvey MacDonald: ‘Ffarwél i ddociau Lerpwl’

David Williams: Non-Welsh immigration into the Welsh Settlement in Patagonia during the first nine years of its history (1865–74)

Fernando Williams: An agricultural oasis in Patagonia: cultural and political implications of the irrigation network built by the Welsh in the Chubut Valley

Guillermo Williams: Representations of the Welsh Settlement and its cultural heritage in Chubut’s educational and historical literature

The papers will be of special interest to those studying matters relating to Wales and Argentina, but they will also be of wider interest. The establishment of the Welsh Settlement in Patagonia was a heroic undertaking which is of international as well as national significance, and the history and development of the Settlement pose many interesting and relevant questions regarding migration and identity in general.

The conference was organized by the Cardiff Centre for Welsh American Studies (which is part of the School of Welsh at Cardiff University), in partnership with the Wales-Argentina Society and the Culture of the 18th and 19th Centuries and the Ethnology and Folk Studies Sections of the University of Wales Alumni Association. The event was also generously supported by Santander Universities.

The National Library of Wales and the Argentinian Embassy (11-08-2016)

In a ceremony at the Monmouthshire and District National Eisteddfod on Tuesday August 2nd the Ambassador of Argentina presented a valuable donation of books relating to Patagonia to the national col

In presenting the books, the Ambassador, R. Carlos Sersale di Cerisano, said: "Wales's relationship with Argentina is so incredibly important to both our nations and is clearly evident here on the Eisteddfod field today. The goodwill that exists between the two countries is to be treasured and these gifts should be seen as a recognition and appreciation of the unique relationship that exists between us."

In return, Rhodri Glyn-Thomas, President of the National Library presented a fine art copy of Kyffin Williams’ 'Puesta de sol sobre el valle de Chubut ' to the Ambassador to mark the occasion and said:

"We are greatly indebted to the Argentinian Embassy for their generosity and goodwill towards the National Library and the people of Wales. Today we pay tribute to the tenacity of the nation and the Welsh language in surviving in the face of all kinds of adversity and hardship. Thanks to the people of Argentina for the warm welcome that has greeted Welsh people traveling to Patagonia over the generations, and for their continued goodwill towards the Welsh language.

Meeting the Ambassador

Architecture student from mid Wales is awarded national scholarship (09-08-2016)

Efa Lois Thomas

Efa Lois Thomas

An architect student from mid Wales has won a scholarship for her ambitious design of a centre that would remember Welsh emigrants who set sail for Patagonia.

Architecture student, Efa Lois Thomas, from Aberystwyth, beat nine other competitors to win the National Eisteddfod of Wales Architecture Scholarship of £1,500, which is supported by the Design Commission for Wales.

The scholarship, which was open to under 25 year olds from Wales or with a Welsh link, aims to give the most promising young architect an opportunity to further their understanding of creative architecture.

She was awarded the scholarship for her idea of creating a Welsh Cultural Centre within a new building on Maryland Street, Liverpool. Her design incorporated Welsh blanket patterns into the building’s façade, including those from quilts that were carried by Welsh emigrants who sailed to Patagonia from Liverpool in 1865.

Efa Lois Thomas said: “Getting the phone call telling me I was being awarded the scholarship was a complete shock as I really didn’t expect it.

“I am passionate about Welsh history and myth and I often design things that are derived from my own experiences of being Welsh.

“The scholarship will allow me to further my knowledge of architecture and to pursue my next level of training to achieve a Master of Architecture.”

The 21-year-old has just completed her Bachelor of Arts at the Liverpool School of Architecture at the University of Liverpool. She will undertake a placement with architectural company Austin-Smith:Lord, before returning to university.

When she finishes her studies she hopes to put her skills to use within Wales, with ambitions to look at unused buildings and the potential of renovating them.

Scholarship selector, Alan Francis, said: “Efa Lois Thomas is young, still an undergraduate, but has tackled the long-standing and sometimes awkward issue of the Welsh diaspora in Liverpool, with her proposal.

“The simple architectural clarity of her vision of a cultural centre, with relevant symbolism, together with an idea for a small exhibition of ceremonial chairs, tucked into the corner of a Georgian square, persuaded us to award her this year’s scholarship.”

Carole-Anne Davies, chief executive of the Design Commission for Wales, added: “Nurturing talent is a priority for the Commission and we’re pleased to award the Architecture Scholarship 2016 to Efa Lois Thomas.

“As ever, there was a competitive range of proposals submitted for the scholarship, and we are proud to be able to play a small part in developing the potential of this talented young woman. We very much hope to see Efa play her part in strengthening the future of design talent in Wales.”

Treasures (12-05-2016)

The Wales-Argentina Society has been chosen to benefit from the world’s first Global Giving Circle. The Community Foundation in Wales has launched the first ever global giving circle (think of it

Founded in 1939, our society has strengthened the link between the Wales and Patagonia whilst also promoting Welsh culture and heritage. To ensure that this strong link remains we arrange and sponsor exchanges for teachers, students and ministers between Wales and Argentina.
Several Eisteddfodau – small and large - are held annually across the communities, and choral competitions are a strong feature. Traditional Welsh folk songs are rarely sung however, which has inspired us to try and hold a series of workshops across the Patagonian Welsh communities.
These workshops will work to improve the unique folk element of singing which has become such a significant part of Eisteddfod competition in Wales. Donations to the Global Giving Circle will pay for expert teachers from Wales to travel to the Welsh villages of Trelew, Gaiman, Esquel and Trevelin to upskill Patagonian teachers and introduce music students to the art of traditional Welsh folk singing, thus giving them the confidence to coach singers in this distinctive style. You can readmore here,-argentina
You can support our project by making a donation on the Global Giving Circle JustGiving site. This will be matched and result in a grant from the Community Foundation in Wales to our project.
It would also be great if you would forward this e-mail to your friends and family – anyone who loves Wales so they can support this initiative. And to help this new campaign go viral, if you have a twitter account please do join in with our social media campaign by tweeting #Ilovewalesfrom… and saying and showing where you are. If you’re able to encourage others to make a donation by including this link and a photo, that would be great too!
All donations received up to the £5,000 target will be matched pound for pound, and split equally between the five ‘treasures’ which are in North America, Patagonia, London and Wales. Once this target has been reached, all additional donations will go to the Foundation’s Fund for Wales endowment to build sustainable funding for under-the-radar Welsh community projects, and will also be matched by the Big Lottery match challenge.
You can read more about the other chosen organisations on the Fund for Wales website.,-argentina
Thank you for joining a community of donors from all over the world who are showing their love for Wales!

The Community Foundation in Wales (charity number: 1074655) is a unique charity which promotes and manages philanthropy. Its work strengthens communities in Wales - connecting people who care with causes that matter.

To read more about the Foundation’s work in Wales see the link below
Follow the Foundation on Twitter - @cfinwales
Follow the Foundation on Facebook (search the Community Foundation in Wales)


BBC National Orchestra of Wales to visit South America (09-10-2015)

BBC National Orchestra of Wales undertakes its most ambitious tour with three weeks in South America this autumn

A week-long residency in celebration of Patagonia 150 offering local communities the opportunity to make music alongside the professional musicians of the Orchestra, culminating with two gala concerts performed in a specially converted wool warehouse.

This autumn BBC National Orchestra of Wales embarks on one of its most ambitious tours to date, taking to the air and road to tour South America. Over three weeks the Orchestra perform in concert halls in Argentina, Chile and Uruguay. Alongside this BBC NOW will be working with communities throughout Patagonia, in a week-long residency marking the 150th anniversary of the establishment of Y Wladfa, the Welsh settlement in the Province. The Patagonia residency culminates with two gala performances in an old wool warehouse which is being transformed in to a concert hall especially for BBC NOW’s concerts, and will later host the town’s annual Eisteddfod – a Welsh festival for the arts. The orchestra has been a driving force in the warehouse regeneration and aims to leave a lasting legacy for music and the arts in the region acting as a catalyst for change.

Between 22 – 30 October, harpist Catrin Finch, conductor Grant Llewellyn and twelve members of BBC NOW will travel 12,000 km to spend a week in towns of the Chubut Province of Argentina to work with over 1000 children from schools and community groups in Patagonia. Performing and delivering workshops and masterclasses, the musicians will work with schools and communities in towns including Puerto Madryn, Rawson, Trelew, Trevelin, Esquel and Gaiman. Many of the towns are in remote areas with limited access to professional cultural activity and the week-long residency offers a once in a lifetime opportunity to work with professional classical/orchestral musicians. BBC NOW will also be providing “musicians on call” standing by to perform in the living rooms and kitchens of people unable to attend the public events.

Catrin Finch kicks things off in Trevelin and Esquel where she will teach local children the harp and even play on board Patagonia’s narrow gauge railway La Trochita. In Rawson the musicians will be joined by special schools facilitator Andy Pidcock, who works regularly with BBC NOW on its ground-breaking work in this field, to deliver bespoke workshops to pupils from special schools. Ysgol y Hendre in Trelew was the first Welsh speaking school in Patagonia; there BBC NOW Chorus Manager, Osian Rowlands, will be reunited with his former music teacher Catrin Heledd Morris who emigrated to Patagonia nearly two decades ago and now teaches in this school. Conductor Grant Llewellyn will assist and coach the conductors of the INTA Youth Orchestra in Trelew alongside side by side rehearsals with BBC NOW musicians.

This will be the first time that the Orchestra has taken its learning work on an international tour. The aim of the week-long residency is to offer a once in a lifetime opportunity to the communities of Y Wladfa, to support the development of music and partnerships in Chubut and leave a lasting legacy. The full orchestra will travel at the end of the first week to perform two gala concerts on 30 October in Trelew – the finale of the week in Patagonia in the converted wool warehouse.

Suzanne Hay, Head of Learning and Partnerships for BBC National Orchestra of Wales said, “The aim of this week-long music residency in Patagonia is to offer a once in a lifetime opportunity to the communities in Y Wladfa. We want to leave a lasting legacy with the communities in the province by, making music, building partnerships and providing expert support to help the rich Welsh musical heritage, which still exists in this area, to thrive. We really are bringing the best of what we do in Wales thousands of miles across the Atlantic, to share with these communities – and we anticipate that it will be as significant an experience for our musicians, as it will be for the people of Patagonia.”

BBC NOW will go on to perform in some of the best concert halls in South America. Within Argentina, two concerts in Buenos Aires in the Teatro Colon (2 & 4 November), a concert in the Teatro El Círculo of Rosario (5 November) and Teatro del Libertador General San Martín in Cordoba (6 November). They will then travel to CorpArtes in Santiago, Chile (8 November) and Teatro Solis in Montevideo, Uruguay (11 November). This landmark tour is being managed by Intermusica.

The tour would not be possible without the generous support of the British Council, Welsh Government, BBC Wales, Arts Council of Wales and Wales Arts International.

| #NOWTour15 | #TaithNOW15

Urdd Members Travel to the Other Side of the World (06-10-2015)

At the end of October, 25 senior Urdd members will travel to Patagonia on a once-in-a life time adventure. This will be the second visit that the Urdd have organised to Patagonia this year to coincid

They will spend 10 days in Patagonia (21 October – 3 November), and as well as having a taste of the culture, they will also do voluntary work such as helping in the Welsh medium nursery school, team building activities with fellow teenagers and spend some time chatting in Welsh with the elderly.
The 25 were chosen from over 100 entries, with the reasons stated for wishing to travel to Patagonia varying – one was inspired by her registering teacher from Patagonia and mesmerised by her stories; another with family there that he has never met and many wishing to travel out there to have a taste of the culture and offer assistance and inspiration to the Welsh learners out there.
They had to raise £2,400 each for the visit, and all 25 of them managed to reach their target. Their fundraising events ranged from holding a coffee morning in the school to doing a sponsored sky-dive.
One of the young people travelling to Patagonia is Sophie Georgina from Ysgol Gyfun Gwynllyw. She said, “I always try to push myself and have new experiences in every aspect of my life. IN the future, I would like to be a teacher and the chance to see Welsh medium school and Welsh culture abroad will be a very special one.
Another young person travelling is Lowri Jones Williams from Ysgol Brynhyfryd. She said, “This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. I think that it is important to learn about different cultures around the world but it will also be interesting for the people that live the other side of the world to hear about our life in Wales.”
Three Urdd members of staff will travel with the young people from Wales, meeting the Menter Iaith Patagonia staff out there who will guide them for the 10 days. Mared Jones, Caerphilly Youth Officer who is leading the visit said, “He have a great bunch this year – so enthusiastic and full of fun. We have held two residential weekends for them to start getting to know each other and everyone gets on so well. It will be a great experience for the young people and for us as well!”
Efa Gruffudd Jones, Urdd Chief Executive said, “This year, 41 young people have had a chance to travel with the Urdd to Patagonia – the first visit was in August, when they took the theatrical production, Mimosa, on tour there and now we are able to offer this visit by working with Mentrau Iaith Cymru. We are glad that we can offer our senior members these sort of opportunities – and over the year 500 members have had a chance to travel to countries such as France, Italy and Cataluña with the Urdd. Experiences that will stay with them forever.”

New Scholarship for Welsh learners from Patagonia 2015 (12-08-2015)

An English teacher from Argentina, who has Welsh roots on her father’s side of the family, has won the first scholarship for a Welsh learner from Patagonia to attend the Welsh Summer Course held at

Grisel Roberts, who lives in Esquel, a town twinned with Aberystwyth, has been learning Welsh on courses in Patagonia since 1998, helped by visiting teachers from Wales. She has also helped other Welsh learners in Patagonia. ‘I think it is very important that we learn a minority language, and take care of our cultural heritage,’ says Grisel. ‘Welsh is part of our culture.’

As she arrives at Aberystwyth University to study Welsh for the whole of August, her ambition is to speak Welsh fluently and correctly, as she wants to converse with other Welsh speakers and to teach Welsh to other learners. ‘I love languages, grammar and linguistics,’ says Grisel.

Aberystwyth University is offering the new scholarship to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the settlement of a Welsh community in Patagonia this year. The scholarship celebrates the relationship between Aberystwyth and Esquel in the Chubut region of Patagonia.

In 2014, there were 268 adults learning Welsh in Patagonia.

The flagship Welsh Summer Course is attended by some 80 learners each year. The course provides new skills for Welsh learners at all levels, from beginners to experienced learners, to improve their Welsh skills, and to take part in a wide range of social and cultural activies in Welsh.

(Left to Right) Parry and Hazel Charles Evans, Llandybie; Hazel was Grisel's first Welsh teacher in Esquel); Marian Gray, Aberystwyth University International Office; Grisel Roberts; Professor Stephen Tooth, Aberystwyth and Esquel People in Partnership Association; Lucy Taylor, Aberystwyth University Department of International Politics; Mercedes Mills, Aberystwyth and Esquel People in Partnership Association; Siôn Meredith, Director of Mid Wales Welsh for Adults Centre.


Patagonia Pattern - Melin Tregwynt (25-06-2015)

Inspired by a story - that starts back 150 years ago

when some folk from Wales journeyed 8,000 miles to create

a new 'Wales beyond Wales' in South America - Patagonia

Uniting Welsh & South American Styles ...

our cloth explores new ground

it's a bit of a nod to those bold pioneers

Made in 4 different colourways -

common thread - hot pink

100% lambswool


Montgomeryshire and The Marches Crown Picture: Iestyn Hughes

Montgomeryshire and The Marches Crown Picture: Iestyn Hughes

Last night (17 June), the Montgomeryshire and the Marches National Eisteddfod Crown was presented to the local Executive Committee.
The Crown is donated by The Wales-Argentina Society, and the fina

Created by silversmith, John Price, a former craft teacher and the designer of many fine Eisteddfod Crowns over the years, the Crown conveys the close relationship that exists between the Welsh and their cousins in the Chubut Province.

The hoop of the Crown is made of silver. At its centre is a stone taken from the beach at Puerto Madryn, where the first Welsh settlers landed on Friday 28 July 1865. On this stone is the ‘nod cyfrin’, the Gorsedd sign. The aim of the settlers on the Mimosa was to create a new Wales in Patagonia, and their hope was to find a new life, prosperous and free from all oppression.

The sails of the Mimosa can be seen on either side of the stone, being pulled down at the end of the journey before the settlers landed in their new home. It is the symbol of the end of one phase and the beginning of the next. These also represent the two memorials seen on the shore - a statue of a woman with her back to the sea Welsh look in hope to the land and, on a peninsula near the landing area, a statue of a native overlooking the sea, ready to welcome the Welsh.

The hoop of the Crown also includes a symbol of the River Camwy. Its waters played a key role in the lives of the residents from the outset. Without the river’s water and the ingenuity of the settlers, the land would never have been productive.

The flowers represent the Small Holly plant (or Quilimbay, the local version of the Welsh name). This plant grows sporadically on the prairie.

The material on the cap, made by Mary Price, is from Patagonia, and is the same material as is used in the costumes of the Gorsedd of Patagonia.

Beryl Vaughan, Chair of the Montgomeryshire and the Marches National Eisteddfod Executive Committee, said, “I am delighted to receive this beautiful Crown this evening, and I thank the Wales-Argentina Society and the family of the late Aur and Arwyn Roberts for their generosity. This is an extremely important year for the relationship between Wales and Patagonia, and we are pleased to note this in such a lovely way, by joining together the two countries in the work of John Price.
“It gives me great pleasure to accept this Crown on behalf of the Executive, and I know that the rest of the team are also hoping that there will be a winner in the ceremony held on Monday 3 August in the Pavilion. We look forward to the ceremony and thank you for your support and sponsorship and a wonderful Crown.

Presenting the Crown

John Price, Beryl Vaughan ( Chair of Executive Cmmittee) and Elvey MacDonald (Honrary President)


This evening (17 June), the Montgomeryshire and the Marches National Eisteddfod Crown was presented to the local Executive Committee.
The Crown is donated by The Wales-Argentina Society, and the fina

Created by silversmith, John Price, a former craft teacher and the designer of many fine Eisteddfod Crowns over the years, the Crown conveys the close relationship that exists between the Welsh and their cousins in the Chubut Province.

The hoop of the Crown is made of silver. At its centre is a stone taken from the beach at Puerto Madryn, where the first Welsh settlers landed on Friday 28 July 1865. On this stone is the ‘nod cyfrin’, the Gorsedd sign. The aim of the settlers on the Mimosa was to create a new Wales in Patagonia, and their hope was to find a new life, prosperous and free from all oppression.

The sails of the Mimosa can be seen on either side of the stone, being pulled down at the end of the journey before the settlers landed in their new home. It is the symbol of the end of one phase and the beginning of the next. These also represent the two memorials seen on the shore - a statue of a woman with her back to the sea Welsh look in hope to the land and, on a peninsula near the landing area, a statue of a native overlooking the sea, ready to welcome the Welsh.

The hoop of the Crown also includes a symbol of the River Camwy. Its waters played a key role in the lives of the residents from the outset. Without the river’s water and the ingenuity of the settlers, the land would never have been productive.

The flowers represent the Small Holly plant (or Quilimbay, the local version of the Welsh name). This plant grows sporadically on the prairie.

The material on the cap, made by Mary Price, is from Patagonia, and is the same material as is used in the costumes of the Gorsedd of Patagonia.

Beryl Vaughan, Chair of the Montgomeryshire and the Marches National Eisteddfod Executive Committee, said, “I am delighted to receive this beautiful Crown this evening, and I thank the Wales-Argentina Society and the family of the late Aur and Arwyn Roberts for their generosity. This is an extremely important year for the relationship between Wales and Patagonia, and we are pleased to note this in such a lovely way, by joining together the two countries in the work of John Price.
“It gives me great pleasure to accept this Crown on behalf of the Executive, and I know that the rest of the team are also hoping that there will be a winner in the ceremony held on Monday 3 August in the Pavilion. We look forward to the ceremony and thank you for your support and sponsorship and a wonderful Crown.

Elvira Moseley nominated for West Glamorgan High Sheriff Award (08-06-2015)

Elvira Moseley

Elvira Moseley

It would be an honour and a privilege to nominate Elvira Moseley for the West Glamorgan High Sheriff’s Awards 2015 for the outstanding effort and contribution Elvira has given and continues to give

Elvira has dedicated most of her life to supporting and helping children and young people in one role or another, but the main reason I am writing this nomination today is the massive difference Elvira has made to children and young people in the community of Baglan.

Elvira started volunteering six years ago when Baglan Youth Forum needed volunteer trustees to help support, create and manage a youth club for young people in the community of Baglan. Elvira then went on and took on the responsibility of secretary on the board of Trustees.

Elvira’s not only helps manage and run the chill-out centre, but is always at hand to help in the club itself, whether this is shopping for tuck, cleaning the centre or spending time with the young people, nothing is too much trouble for Elvira. If it wasn’t for the dedication and the amount of contribution from people like Elvira, Baglan Youth Forum wouldn’t be able to provide a safe place for children and young people to go.

Elvira has also volunteered in three primary schools in the area, helping children to read in English at Blaenbaglan Primary, and in Welsh at Ysgol Gynradd Gymraeg Tyle'r Ynn.

In this nomination it wouldn’t be fair not to mention the enormous contribution Elvira has devoted to Baglan Primary School where she spent her time sharing her knowledge of her home to help the children in the school and their families understand her culture and the history behind it. This resulted in the whole school from reception aged children up to year 6 getting involved, learning and researching into Elvira’s background and her home in Patagonia, Argentina and the history behind Welsh speaking community moving there 150 years ago.

This was a massive project with a huge amount of involvement given freely by Elvira to the school, helping and encouraging children to create links with Patagonia and the children living there. This resulted in the children performing their knowledge and language skills into a concert for all to see. Further information can be seen at:

These are just some of the reasons I feel Elvira deserves the acknowledgement and recognition she dedicates to other people including children and young people in our community.


Fiesta Aber-Esquel (05-06-2015)

Marking 150 years since the first Welsh settlers landed in Patagonia
A Celebratory Event,Tuesday 28th July
The Aberystwyth and Esquel People in Partnership Association (AEPPA) will be organising

A series of outdoor activities, including music, storytelling and dance will be taking place at Llys y Brenin providing entertainment for young and old, locals and tourists alike. It will be a great opportunity to learn more about the Welsh and Argentinian story.

The Association is collaborating with Ceredigion Museum to organize activities and workshops for local school children, coinciding with the theme of their summer exhibitions, about travel, seafaring and migration.

Ceredigion Heritage Youth Panel (CHYP) will be hosting fun workshops at the museum on the 22nd and 23rd July, as well as on the day itself. Ceredigion Museum’s Learning Officer, Anna Evans said: “We can always depend on our youth panel to come up with exciting, new ways to explore history. So come along to help build a ‘Mythical Monster’, who will make an appearance at Aberystwyth carnival on the 25th. According to legend Patagonia was the fabled Land of Giants so we need everyone’s input on this!”

Theatr Arad Goch will also be collaborating and providing a venue for all kinds of music, drama and storytelling sessions.

To mark this special anniversary, the Association has granted a scholarship of £2500 to enable a young person from the locality to visit Welsh Patagonia and spend some study time there. The winner of this celebratory scholarship is Isabella Hughes, who is a former pupil of Penglais Comprehensive School. Isabella is studying anthropology at Edinburgh University and will be spending 3 weeks in the colony this summer, researching for her degree.

Isabella said: “I am very grateful to the Association for giving me the opportunity to visit Y Wladfa, enabling me to pursue my dream of visiting this part of the world and complementing my undergraduate research. My research will look at the ways in which we engage with migrational history and peoples' experience of learning about Patagonian history or visiting Patagonia.

“Going to Patagonia will be the perfect end to my research, getting to engage with this history and meet people whom are an integral part of this history. If anybody in Wales or Patagonia would be interested in taking part in my research they are welcome to contact me by email: ”.

The Association is also eager to hear from anybody who has stories relating to the emigration. Maybe an ancestor or distant relatives migrated to Y Wladfa? If so please get in touch with your story. The People’s Collection, National Library of Wales will be on hand to record any interesting facts or family memories you may have.

Stephen Tooth, Chair of the Association, said: “We know for a fact that a handful of migrants from Aberystwyth left on that journey into the unknown 150 years ago and their stories can be seen in the Ceredigion Museum summer exhibition. The day will be a great opportunity to celebrate our ties and learn about the history of both countries, particularly about the story of the Welsh migration to Patagonia in the 19th century.

“The twinning between Esquel and Aberystwyth has gone from strength to strength since its inception and despite there being thousands of miles between us, we feel it is important to mark this special anniversary by highlighting the strong bonds that exist between both our communities.

“If any groups, businesses or societies want to organise an event to coincide with the celebrations, please get in touch with the co-ordinator, Gaynor Jones on 07775 847710. We are happy to hear from all and make it a day to remember.”


Mistar Urdd reunites with his old friend from Patagonia - (24-05-2015)

Pen Gwyn to visit the Caerphilly Eisteddfod
The Urdd’s popular mascot, Mistar Urdd, will welcome his old friend to this year’s Caerphilly and District Urdd National Eisteddfod – Pen Gwyn the

Both characters will be reunited at the Eisteddfod almost 40 years after they were first created by the then Urdd PR man Wynne Melville Jones.
Pen Gwyn’s presence on the Eisteddfod ‘Maes’ will take the form of soft toys on sale at the Urdd’s stand. From September onwards, Pen Gwyn will also appear in the Urdd’s monthly magazine for 7-11 year olds, ‘CIP’.
Pen Gwyn’s comeback in ‘CIP’ follows the discovery of original cartoons based on the character, published in Urdd magazine ‘Deryn’ in the 1970s. The cartoons, created by Mary Vaughan Jones, the late author of the Sali Mali books, will be visually updated and reproduced in full colour in ‘CIP’.
Pen Gwyn’s return coincides with the 150th anniversary of the establishment of ‘Y Wladfa’, the Welsh settlement in Patagonia, and is one of a number of activities linked to Patagonia organised by the Urdd.
Pupils from Ysgol yr Hendre primary school in Patagonia will visit the Maes, and this year’s Peace and Goodwill Message, one of the Urdd’s best-loved traditions, has been inspired by the voyage of the Mimosa, the ship that carried the first Welsh settlers to Patagonia.
Wynne Melville Jones, who later founded Wales’ first bilingual PR company Stratamatrix and who now works as an artist, explains: “At the end of the 1970s I was asked to look at developing a new character to appear with Mistar Urdd, and the result was Pen Gwyn the tricolour penguin who could act as a link between Patagonia and Wales.
“The children of Wales first saw Pen Gwyn when he landed at Cardiff Wales Airport on his first visit to the homeland and Mistar Urdd and hundreds of members of the Urdd were there to meet him.
“As well as the cartoons in Deryn, a Pen Gwyn song was released, composed by Geraint Davies and performed by Emyr Wyn.
“The return of Pen Gwyn is an excellent opportunity to position the Urdd within the Patagonia celebrations and he and MIstar Urdd will once again join with thousands of children and young people to generate interest and enthusiasm in the Urdd’s activities, both in Wales and in Patagonia.”
Llio Maddocks, who edits the Urdd’s magazines, adds: “Pen Gwyn was a likeable, comical character, and at the end of the 1970s and early 1980s, a familiar face at the Urdd Eisteddfod and elsewhere. I’m sure a new generation of Urdd members will be thrilled to read about his exploits in ‘CIP’ magazine, and I look forward to hearing what our readers think about this long-lost member of the Urdd family.”
Re-creating iconic magazine covers from 1979 for the Urdd’s Welsh learners
Three iconic covers from 1979 editions of the magazine ‘Mynd’, the predecessor of ‘Iaw’, the Urdd’s magazine for comprehensive school Welsh learners, are to be recreated with modern-day stars.
A cover featuring singer and performer Caryl Parry Jones will be recreated with the singer Miriam Isaac, Caryl’s daughter, for the June edition of ‘Iaw’. There’ll be an interview with Miriam, as well as facts and figures comparing Wales today with the Wales of the 1970s.
In the September edition of ‘Iaw’, a new cover with cyclist Geraint Thomas will echo a 1979 ‘Mynd’ cover featuring the rugby player John Toshack.
A picture of the musician and TV presenter Griff Lynch on the October cover of ‘Iaw’ will recreate a cover from 1979 with the musician Geraint Griffiths.
Elements of the ‘Mynd’ design – black and white images framed with a red border - will also be incorporated in the new ‘Iaw’ covers.
Llio Maddocks explains: “It’s fascinating to look at the ‘Mynd’ covers from 1979, which are so representative of the style and fashion of the era. Recreating the covers will be an exciting way of introducing modern-day stars and personalities to our readers.”
Pen Gwyn’s song, which was released by Sain in 1979, is now available to download from the Sain website or iPlayer for 99p.

Pen Gwyn



Wales' national theatres team up for the first time, with one of the country's leading artists, Marc Rees, to tell an epic, true story of survival and adventure.

In 1865, 150 men, women and children left Wales in search of a better life in Patagonia, South America. This multi-platform production, incorporating live action and film, and performed in English, Welsh and Spanish, will portray some of the key moments in their extraordinary journey, examine the mythologisation of their story in Wales, and look at what has become of their descendants in ‘Y Wladfa’ (‘The Colony’, as the settlement is affectionately known in Welsh).

will be staged in the Royal Opera House stores near Aberdare - a vast building not normally open to the public, close to the homes of many of the original pioneers from Wales The cast of performers will include: Gareth Aled, Rosalind Brooks, Dafydd Emyr, Angharad Harop, Eddie Ladd, Beth Powlesland, Caroline Sabin and Lara Ward, as well as guest performers Billy Hughes and Fernando Williams from Argentina.

Integrated into the live performance will be excerpts from an S4C commissioned film, written by Roger Williams and directed by Lee Haven Jones. The film, which is produced by Joio, will be broadcast in full on S4C at the end of July 2015.

Creator Marc Rees is an interdisciplinary creative with an established track record of delivering groundbreaking, provocative and risk-taking projects. Adain Avion was Rees’ most ambitious project to date, and was selected as Wales' flagship project for the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad and London Festival 2012. His Tir Sir Gâr, made in collaboration with writer Roger Williams for Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru was the most nominated production in the Theatre Critics of Wales Awards 2014, with five nominations. In 2014, Rees created a re-imagining the world of Under Milk Wood, Raw Material: Llareggub Revisited for NTW and BBC Wales that incorporated the whole of the township of Laugharne as part of the DT 100 Festival. He is also the creator and curator of LLAWN (Llandudno Arts Weekend), an annual festival that celebrates the North Wales seaside town's Victorian heritage.

National Theatre Wales has been making English-language productions in locations all over Wales, the UK, internationally and online since March 2010. It operates from a small base in Cardiff’s city centre, but works all over the country and beyond, using Wales’ rich and diverse landscape, its towns, cities and villages, its incredible stories and rich talent as its inspiration. The Welsh Government and the Arts Council of Wales are supporting National Theatre Wales.

Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru The Welsh-language national theatre of Wales – creating innovative main stage theatre, and ambitious productions in surprising locations and at the heart of communities throughout Wales and beyond. Shaping a national narrative that reflects the dynamic culture of Wales and that resonates with other nations and cultures throughout the world.

S4C is a Welsh language television channel offering programmes across a wide range of genres, including award-winning dramas and documentaries. Working in partnership with the creative industries in Wales, S4C gives coverage to a wide range of cultural events, such as theatre and music productions, as well as collaborating to produce original content for broadcast on the channel.


Welsh Bible from the Mimosa among treasures on display at the National Library this Bank Holiday (22-05-2015)

Exhibition in NLW

A Bible carried by Welsh settlers on board the Mimosa as they voyaged across the Atlantic in search of a better life in South America is among the treasures on display at the National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth this Bank Holiday Monday, 25 May.
The Welsh-language Bible is on short-term loan to the Library for the duration of a new exhibition called ‘Gwladfa’, which marks the 150th anniversary of the founding of the Welsh colony in Patagonia.

‘Gwladfa’, which opens on Saturday, 23 May, describes the settlers’ early preparations and the hardships they faced on the sea crossing. They eventually landed in Puerto Madryn on 26 July 1865, where, despite an arid, inhospitable landscape, they established a self-governing community with the Welsh language and culture at its heart.
The exhibition includes manuscripts and artwork from the Library’s own collections. On 19 June, members of the public are invited to bring personal memorabilia connected to Patagonia to the Library, to add to and improve on information already available on Wikipedia and the People’s Collection Wales website.

NLW Exhibition

Leading Welsh jeweller creates commemorative collection (21-05-2015)

Mari Thomas Jewellery

Mari Thomas Jewellery

MT Jewellery presents: the Mimosa Collection

Leading Welsh contemporary designer jeweller Mari Thomas has created a collection to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the establishment of Y Wladfa, the Welsh settlement in Patagonia.
There are two pieces - a necklace and a pin which can be worn on a lapel, tie or as a brooch - with the design based on the Mimosa clipper, the ship that carried the 153 passengers from all parts of Wales to their new life in the Chebut Valley in Southern Argentina. The pieces have been produced in solid Sterling Silver and hallmarked with Mari’s maker mark. They are a limited edition produced only during the year of the anniversary and contain the letter date for 2015 in the hallmark. They are priced at £150 for the pin and from £290 for the necklace. A proportion of this sum will go to Cymdeithas Cymru-Ariannin and to projects in Patagonia. Mari is also able to produce special solid gold editions on request.
The pieces are available to order through the MT website

MT Jewellery

Pendant (c)Mari Thomas
Pin (c)Mari Thomas


The Welsh in Patagonia - exhibition in Aberystwyth (21-05-2015)

Sail away to a better life; a display to commemorate an epic journey made 150 years ago by the first Welsh emigrants to Patagonia, South America.
22 May until 2 August 2015

A temporary display reflecting the life at sea and highlighting the journey made by the first Welsh settlers to Patagonia starts at Ceredigion Museum on 22 May.

Carrie Canham, curator at Ceredigion Museum, explains how the 153 passengers endured the trials and tribulations of the two month journey on board the clipper ‘Mimosa’: “The Mimosa was not the original ship commissioned to take the passengers but was a clipper adapted to make the journey at short notice. It must have been a difficult and trying passage for all concerned.”

The details surrounding the journey suggest that the passengers had to wait a month before boarding. Carrie continues: “Once aboard they had to wait for the weather to improve. Another few days were spent just waiting for the wind to fill the sails.’
Finally, at four o'clock in the afternoon on 28 May,1865 the anchor was raised and the 'Mimosa' began its voyage to Patagonia.

' the anchor was raised and we bade farewell to the land of our birth.' Thomas Jones, Glan Camwy

The passengers came from all over Wales and a few hailed from the Aberystwyth area.
They had an eventful start to their voyage - strong winds and huge waves came crashing down on the ship soon after it left the River Mersey.

The display at the museum will contain items relating to life from that period. Carrie outlines the main issues that the exhibition addresses, ‘We have items in our collections which are similar to those that people would have taken with them. There are letters and documents relating to individual stories concerning the passengers too.”

Some had never been to sea before and this must have proved incredibly difficult for them to cope with. The weather remained relatively calm while they crossed the Atlantic Ocean and until they reached the shores of Brazil, where the ship was caught in another storm.

Various nautical activities are planned at the museum and information is available about how you can take part.

Carrie continued: “On 26 July 1865, after almost two months at sea, a member of the crew announced that land was in sight. The ship arrived at New Bay that night and the passengers climbed to the deck to catch their first glimpse of land in the morning. A small crew of men went ashore that evening, but the remainder of the passengers waited another day for an opportunity to set foot on Patagonian soil.”

The exhibition can be seen in the main auditorium of Ceredigion Museum and is free.
But don’t forget, the museum has a special night of Sea Shanty singing on 26 June at 7pm (£7.00/ £6.00).

Mimosa prints for sale (09-04-2015)

Oriel Mimosa in Llandeilo sell prints of an original picture to mark 150 years of the Welsh landing

To mark 150 years since Mimosa’s arrival in Patagonia, 150 prints of the painting, each one on best quality paper, numbered and with an authenticating certificate, will be produced and sold by Oriel Mimosa, Llandeilo, to celebrate the 150 year anniversary of the landing. The prints cost £150 each. A proportion of this sum will go to Cymdeithas Cymru-Ariannin and to projects in Patagonia.

Competing through Skype from Patagonia (10-03-2015)

This year two young Argentineans from Patagonia, Guillermo Javier Thomas and Florencia Giselle Zamareno, will be competing in the Urdd ‘outside Wales’ regional Eisteddfod through Skype. The

Urdd Gobaith Cymru promotes the use of the Welsh language and provides a wide range of opportunities for children and young people through community groups, residential centres and their annual National Eisteddfod.

This will be the first time that Guillermo, who is originally from Gaiman, competes in the Urdd Eisteddfod and he will travel to Wales for the National Eisteddfod in Caerphilly, whatever the outcome on Saturday, staying for three weeks. He said, “I think that it’s interesting how we use social media to shorten distances – and in this case, it gives me an opportunity to compete in the Urdd Eisteddfod.

“I am a little nervous regarding how the technology will work – and if the adjudicator can fully appreciate the performance using the computer’s camera and microphone. I will be singing and reciting from my flat in La Plata, Buenos Aires where I’m in University, aware that the neighbours might be able to hear me!”

The One Show presenter Alex Jones will open the Eisteddfod officially and Gillian Elisa Thomas, who plays Grandma in the Billy Elliott musical, will be adjudicating. There will be nearly 100 children and young people competing in London, including Urdd members from London Welsh School, the London ‘Aelwyd’ (Senior Urdd members club), and individual members from every corner of the UK.

Florencia Giselle Zamareno from Gaiman will be competing in the instrumental solo for 19 – 25 year olds with her guitar and Guillermo competing in the solo folk and the solo reciting, both competitions for 19 – 25 years old.

In the past, children have competed over Skype from Bahrain and Singapore, but this is the first time a contact has been made with Patagonia. Leah Owen-Griffiths, organiser of the ‘outside Wales’ regional Eisteddfod said, “We are very excited that we have two young people competing through Skype from Patagonia this year – it’s great that we now have the technology to enable us to open our Eisteddfod to members from across the world. It’s also great that the popular presenter Alex Jones has agreed to open the Eisteddfod for us – Alex has always been, and still is, very supportive of the Urdd – while having someone of Gillian Elisa’s standing as an adjudicator is a great boost.

“This year we will also have Welsh stalls in the vestry including London’s ‘Cylch Ti a Fi’, Cariad Welsh Cakes and a stall selling Urdd products.”


Matthew Thistlewood, Youth Music Manager, Ty Cerdd visited Argentina recently (26-02-2015)

Read about his visit here


An essential tool to study the Welsh in Patagonia—and it’s free! (09-02-2015)

Eirionedd  Baskerville

Eirionedd Baskerville

In 1865 just over 150 Welsh people sailed from Liverpool intent on establishing a new radical, Welsh-speaking Wales in Patagonia. It would prove an influential and inspirational event in the history o

Although the Settlement did not eventually develop along the lines envisaged by the early Welsh pioneers, Welsh culture remains an important element in the identity of Chubut. Welsh is still a living language there. Perhaps as many as 5,000 Patagonians speak the language today, and what is even more remarkable is how recent years have witnessed a significant revival of interest in all things Welsh, with many attending Welsh-learner classes and some schools teaching through the medium of both Welsh and Spanish. Moreover, the pioneer spirit, sacrifice and ideals of those early Welsh settlers remain an inspiration to many today in Wales, Argentina and much further afield.

As part of the celebrations of the 150th anniversary of the establishment of the Welsh Settlement in Chubut, the Wales-Argentina Society has published a Companion to the Welsh Settlement in Patagonia by Eirionedd A. Baskerville. It is a biographical dictionary and contains articles on over forty of the early Welsh pioneers in Patagonia and their descendants. It is an electronic publication and is available free-of-charge to the public on the Wales-Argentina Society’s website - see MORE below:

The intention is to add further entries from time to time on individuals, organizations and various topics relating to the Welsh Settlement. Because the Companion is published electronically, it will also be possible to revise existing entries. Suggestions for additions and corrections should be emailed to the author:

Eirionedd A. Baskerville is a former member of staff of the National Library of Wales and is Secretary of Ceredigion Historical Society. She is a specialist in the field of genealogy and family history, and is a leading authority on the family history of the Welsh in Patagonia

This Companion is a mine of information on all aspects of the Welsh Settlement in Patagonia and an invaluable reference work for all those interested in this remarkable chapter in the history of Wales and Argentina.

For further information, please contact the author, Eirionedd Baskerville ( or the Secretary of the Wales-Argentine Society, Ceris Gruffudd (


Conductor for National Youth Choir of Wales (03-02-2015)

Our distinguished colleague John S Davies who was due to conduct the National Youth Choir of Wales this year in July at Llandaff Cathedral and in October in Buenos Aires and Chubut Province as part of

Tŷ Cerdd is delighted that Nia Llewelyn Jones of Gloucester Cathedral music staff has accepted the invitation to conduct the National Youth Choir of Wales during this important year. Nia is assistant to the Cathedral’s Director of Music, Adrian Partington, and is responsible for conducting the Cathedral Youth Choir. Nia is also the Cathedral’s Singing Development Leader with special responsibilities for young singers.

Gwyn L Williams, Director of Tŷ Cerdd, said:

"Tŷ Cerdd is naturally saddened by the withdrawal of John S Davies as conductor of the National Youth Choir of Wales. However this becomes a real opportunity for our young singers to benefit from the huge energy and charisma of the talented young musician Nia Llewelyn Jones who is already proving her worth in the UK choral scene. Her excellent work as part of Gloucester Cathedral’s music staff has drawn attention to her abilities and Nia regularly works with Simon Halsey with the choruses associated with City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and the London Symphony Orchestra. She is a name to watch and Tŷ Cerdd is excited to have her on board for 2015."

150th Anniversary of Welsh Migration to Patagonia from Liverpool in 1865 (16-01-2015)

Merseyside Welsh Heritage Society's Mimosa Festival Appeal Liverpool May 29-31 2015

The Merseyside Welsh Heritage Society intends to hold a Festival on the weekend of May 29 to May 31, 2015 as part of the general celebrations of the 150th anniversary of the sailing of the Mimosa to set up the Welsh settlement in Patagonia. The ship left the port of Liverpool on May 28, 1865 and we therefore intend as a Society 1) to place an appropriate memorial on a suitable location on the Mersey waterfront to mark the event: the memorial will cost five thousand pounds (£5,000) to design and erect, with a view to being unveiled in an important ceremony on the afternoon of Saturday, May 30, 2015 at 3.00pm., 2) to present an ambitious programme for the weekend, including talks, a performance of the work ‘Spirit of the Mimosa’ (by Tim Baker) and to welcome a choir from the Welsh School at Trelew, Patagonia. Overall the Society is seeking to raise £8,000.

We would therefore be extremely grateful to receive any contributions towards the Memorial and the associated events. Please send them to the Society’s Chair, Dr D. Ben Rees, 32 Garth Drive, Allerton, Liverpool, L18 6HW by May 28th 2015. All contributions will be recorded in our local newspaper and in the Festival programme. Cheques should be made payable to the Merseyside Welsh Heritage Society.

With many thanks,
Dr D Ben Rees (Chairman)
Ms Rachel Gooding (Treasurer)
Dr Arthur Thomas (Secretary)


Patagonia 2015 - Discover. Contribute. Share. (15-01-2015)

People's Collection Wales is a website dedicated to the story of Wales
and its people. During 2015 we are hoping to collect information and
items relevant to Patagonia and the 150th anniversary o

If you or someone you know are interested, see the link below


Touring Patagonia with new production (13-01-2015)

The Andes

The Andes

17 young people from across Wales have now been selected to join the cast of ‘Mimosa’; a theatrical production and joint project between the Urdd and Clwyd Theatr Cymru. They’ll be working wi

The production will follow the history of the first settlers that travelled to Patagonia to start a new life 150 years ago. The production’s first performance will be during the National Eisteddfod in Meifod before the cast travel to Patagonia the following week to take the production on tour.

Tim Baker is the Director with Dyfan Jones taking the role of Musical Director. The 4 professional actors will start working on the production in the spring, with the young people from Wales and Patagonia joining them in July.

The young people met for the first time in December in Clwyd Theatr Cymru, and had a chance to learn two songs from the show with Dyfan Jones. Dyfan said, “We are very lucky with the young people that we’ve chosen, they are among the best. We had allocated quite a lot of time for them to learn two songs, but they had learnt them in no time. I very much look forward to working further with them.”

The Director Tim Baker, who also met them in December, hopes that the young people will play an important role in developing the show. He said, “I very much hope that their ideas can be integrated into the production – of course, three quarters of the story is factual, but there is flexibility with the ending for them to put their own stamp on it. We also hope to get some ideas from the young Argentineans regarding how the story should end, co-creating the story.”

Sian Rogers, Urdd Youth and Communities Director, “I look forward to working with Tim Baker and his staff at Clwyd Theatr Cymru on this exciting project. The cast have now met each other, and it’s great that they come from every corner of Wales and range in age from 15 – 22 years old. They have a busy period ahead of them now, as they all have a target of £2,900 to raise, before they attend a 10 day residential course in July to practice the production before taking it on the road.”

The production will be shown in Theatr y Maes, Eisteddfod Genedlaethol Meifod a’r Gororau (1 – 8 August) and in a venue in Cardiff.


The young people chosen for the project are:-
Steven Williams, Llanberis (18 years old) and Sion Elwyn Parry, Bethel (17 years old)
Steven Williams, “This is a great opportunity – I am studying performing arts at Coleg Menai at the moment so this was an ideal opportunity for me – being part of a national production and travelling to the other side of the world to perform.”

Carwyn Jones, Carreglefn (15 years old) + Gwion Morris Jones (15 years old) Brynteg – Ysgol Syr Thomas Jones
Carwyn Jones, “This is the first time that a theatrical visit to Patagonia has been offered by the Urdd, and I think I will benefit greatly from it in the future. I very much look forward to it.”
Gwion Morris Jones, “I think that it will be a great experience and I look forward to meeting new people with the same interest as us and visiting Patagonia, seeing what life is like over there.”

Ysgol Glan Clwyd - Elena Llinos Brown (16 years old)
Ysgol Brynhyfryd - Elan Meirion (15 years old), Gruffudd Ifan Mckee (15 years old) , Steffan Wilson-Jones (17 years old) ac Alys Mari Winstanley (16 years old)
Gruffudd, “This is a once in a life time opportunity – I had to take it as I thoroughly enjoy singing and acting. I also look forward to speaking Welsh with young people the same age as us on the other side of the world.”
Elena, “We need to raise £2,900 each to take part in the project. Local businesses have been very supportive, and the local primary and secondary schools have been helping to raise money. It is a long process and I’ve just started, but we intend to do a sponsored walk up Snowdon, bag packing in supermarkets and we have a concert with Rhys Meirion and Robert Arwyn in Tabernacle Chapel, Rhuthin in January.”

Meirionnydd / Maldwyn
Glain Rhys (16 years old) Ysgol y Berwyn + Harri Hughes (17 years old) Ysgol Bro Hyddgen
Glain, “When I heard that I had been chosen to be part of the cast I was very happy. We have to start raising the money now and one event that we have planned is a West end night when local talents will be performing songs from famous musicals. I am very excited to be taking part in the production.”

Conwy / Flint
Rebecca Ryder (17 years old) Ysgol y Creuddyn a Miriam Powell-Davies (17 years old) Ysgol Maes Garmon
Rebecca, “I look forward to taking the production on tour in Patagonia, making new friends and having a chance to speak Welsh all the time on the other side of the world.”
Miriam, “Some of my friends went on the annual Urdd visit to Patagonia last year and when I heard that they were offering a theatrical tour, I thought that it was perfect. Visiting Patagonia in itself is very exciting but doing so while working with a new group of people on a brand new production is brilliant!”

Carmarthen / Pembrokeshire
University of Wales, Trinity St Davids, Carmarthen - Carys Haf (19 years old) and Sara Mair (21 years old) originally from Caio and Gwyndaf Lewis(20 years old) originally from Efail Wen by Crymych.
Gwyndaf Lewis, “I look forward to performing and working on the musical, and now that we have met once it all seems more real – we are about to embark on something very exciting. We will be taking part in a national production and touring it the other side of the world – which is amazing!”

Rhondda Cynon Taf
Guildford School of Acting – James Owen Morgan (21 years old) originally from Aberdare.
James Morgan “I started acting when I was very young, in the Coliseum in Aberdare – I had a brilliant teacher in Ysgol Gyfun Rhydywaun who helped me get into Drama College. I very much look forward to travelling to Patagonia and being part of this exciting production. My sister went on the Urdd visit to Patagonia in 2008 so I will be borrowing a few of her ideas when trying to raise my target of £2,900.”

Cerddwn Ymlaen Patagonia 2015 (31-12-2014)

Following Cerddwn Ymlaen’s recent visit to Patagonia, arrangements have been confirmed for their sponsored walk to Patagonia between the 17th and 27th of November, 2015.

"We have accepted an invite from the Andes 150 Celebration Committee to bring one hundred and fifty people over from Wales, and take part in the official celebrations to mark one hundred and fifty years since establishing the Wladfa (the Welsh settlement) in Patagonia".

"We will be walking in the footsteps of our ancestors who crossed the prairie to discover Cwm Hyfryd at the foot of the Andes, and establish a town, Trevelin. The path will wind through the desert and walkers will get to view some of the most impressive and magnificent landscapes on this planet. The area is also teeming with wildlife – birds, animals and plants."

"Everyone wishing to join the walk will be asked to contribute a minimum of £4,000 each, and that can be a personal payment, charitable fundraising, commercial sponsorship or a combination of all these. Once the costs have been paid, the profit will be shared between Ysgol Gymraeg yr Andes, to promote Welsh education in the Wladfa and Elen’s Fund, to promote organ donation in Wales.

"During the walk, we will create a Cerddwn Ymlaen Choir which will perform with Rhys Meirion at the Anniversary Concert in Trevelin at the end of the week. Many local Welsh-speaking residents will join the walkers on the trek, and the local communities will be joining the group at the camp every evening."

"Although the Welsh language has withered in Patagonia, there are still a group of very proactive people trying to promote a revival. Having a hundred and fifty people from Wales joining their celebrations will be a massive boost to their efforts and will create a new strong link between Patagonia and Wales which will continue through the next generation."

"We invite everyone who are interested to register their interest, in the first instance, through the Teithiau Tango website – or by contacting them directly on – 01970 631737. This is a unique opportunity to be part of this very special journey which will be a once in a lifetime experience. It will raise valuable money for two important charities and give a huge boost for Welsh-speakers in the Wladfa as they celebrate one hundred and fifty years of their existence."

Rhys Meirion.Main Walker
Eryl Vaughan Organiser
Aled Rees Teithiau Tango


Harp for Patagonia (08-12-2014)

On the eve of celebrating the 150th anniversary of the Welsh colony in Patagonia, funds are being raised to send two new harps from Wales to Patagonia as a practical way of helping to keep the music

The year 2015 will be the 150th anniversary of “Y Wladfa”, the Welsh colony which was established in Patagonia, southern Argentina in 1865. It was an act of faith by many poor people who were seeking a better life on the other side of the world. Against all the odds, the colony was established successfully, and the Welsh language and culture are miraculously still alive in Chubut today. One of the founders of “Y Wladfa” , Michael D Jones, took a Triple Harp from Wales to Patagonia. The harp is kept at the Welsh Museum in Gaiman, Patagonia, and symbolises the importance of the harp to the early settlers.

To kick-start the appeal, the French harp manufacturers, Les Harpes Camac, have offered generous matching sponsorship towards buying any harp from their catalogue, if the appeal can secure the remaining funds.

Harpist Elinor Bennett is the organiser, supported by Canolfan Gerdd William Mathias. She appeals to every person who received harp lessons anytime in the past, in Wales or further afield, to contribute a small sum towards the project. Larger sums of £150 to mark the 150th anniversary – would help significantly to reach the target of raising £10,000 by January 18th, 2015.

Elinor Bennett

Elinor said: “ It would be wonderful if we as harpists and harp-lovers could buy new harps to give children in Patagonia the means of sustaining Welsh musical traditions. For several years, I have dreamt of helping young people in Patagonia to have access to good-quality modern harps. The 150th anniversary seems to be the right time to turn this dream into reality. Two teachers give harp lessons there, but finding suitable instruments for their pupils is a huge problem. My hope is to raise funds to buy two harps – one for the community in Dyffryn Camwy, the other for the community in Cwm Hyfryd in the Andes.

“I particularly appeal to every person who has received harp lessons to help achieve this objective! Thousands of children have received harp lessons in the last 25 years, and I hope that the majority of them will take the opportunity of contributing to the fund.

“This will be a both a symbolic and practical act to support the amazing work done by many people in Patagonia to keep Welsh culture alive.”

TOGETHER, WE CAN! For more details and information how to donate click below


Gorsedd to sponsor Eisteddfod de Chubut Chair

The Gorsedd of the Bards is delighted to announce that it has been invited to sponsor the International Chair competition at the Eisteddfod in Patagonia next year, with the generosity of David Gravell, Llanelli, enabling it to offer this support for the Eisteddfod, which is so important to the Gorsedd and to Welsh speakers everywhere.
Penri Tanad, Gorsedd Recorder, said, “The Gorsedd of the Bards is a passionate supporter of the Eisteddfod in Patagonia, and is delighted to support the biggest event in the annual Welsh calendar there. The Eisteddfod has been held annually since 1965, and having the opportunity to sponsor the International Chair in 2015, a year which is so important in the history of the area, is a great honour for us in Wales. We are very grateful to David Gravell for his generosity allowing us to be part of the celebrations in this way.
"The Gravell family have had a close relationship with Patagonia for years, and David's father, Tom, was a regular visitor to the area. Since 2003, the family has funded an annual scholarship, the Tom Gravell Scholarship, enabling a student to come to Wales to study at Llandovery College for a term.
“This additional support, enabling the Gorsedd to sponsor the International Chair, is another sign of the important link between the family and Patagonia, and we thank them for their support this year and throughout the years.”
David Gravell’s commitment and support to the National Eisteddfod here in Wales is also known to many, and over the past year, a brand new car, donated by his company, Gravells, has helped to raise thousands of pounds towards the local funds at Camarthenshire and Montgomeryshire and the Marches, as the main prize in the Eisteddfod’s raffle.

Descendant of Michael D. Jones takes gift to Patagonia (13-10-2014)

A direct descendant of Michael D. Jones, the founder of the first Welsh settlement in Patagonia, will be travelling with the Urdd on the 22 October to Patagonia, with a gift from her family in Wal

Nel Bere, who is 18 years old and a student at Coleg Meirion Dwyfor in Pwllheli, is the great great great grandchild of Michael D. Jones. She will present a framed picture of Michael D. Jones, a gift from her father’s cousin, Alun Owen, to the Welsh Museum in Gaiman to note the 150th anniversary of the Welsh Settlement in Patagonia.
Nel said, “My uncle, Alun, asked me if I could take this gift to the museum and present it to my grandmother’s second cousin, Luned Gonzalez, who lives in Patagonia. My grandmother went to Patagonia to visit her family and from a young age I’ve known about this far away land that other people speak Welsh! And now, thanks to the Urdd, I’ve been given the opportunity to visit the place where my great great great grandfather ventured 150 ago.”
Nel will be travelling with 24 other young people from across Wales – the visit is organised by the Urdd and Mentrau Iaith Cymru. They will be leaving Heathrow on the 22 October, spending time in Trelew, Esquel and Buenos Aires before returning on the 5 November. While in Patagonia they will be visiting the Welsh nursery school, socialising with Argentinean Welsh speaking young people and competing in the Eisteddfod.
The 25 young people had to raise £2,400 each to participate in the visit, and they achieved this through various activities such as a golf tournament, raffle, afternoon teas and concerts. This will be the first time that the visit is open to the whole of Wales, as it used to alternate south and north.
Lleucu Sion, Urdd National Youth Co-ordinator and leader of the visit said, “We have met the 25 young people that are coming with us to Patagonia three times in the months leading to the visit and they are so enthusiastic and excited. It is great that we can offer this opportunity to young Welsh speakers – a chance in a lifetime for them to meet children and young people from a different culture the other side of the world who share their language. “

Patagonia Website (03-10-2014)

New free resource published by @ebol

With the 150th anniversary of the first Welsh settlers in Patagonia fast approaching, what better way to celebrate the occasion than to publish a free trilingual educational resource to link children in Patagonia and Wales?
The first unit is an introduction to the landscape, history and traditions of these nations.
The first sections are now live and available onthe link below. Further resource will become available later in the year.

Welsh colonists of Patagonia topic of discussion at National Eisteddfod (31-07-2014)

Aberystwyth University will hold its first Annual E.G. Bowen Lecture at The National Eisteddfod in Llanelli this year (1-9 August) which looks at how the Welsh colonists of Patagonia have adapted

Aberystwyth University will hold its first Annual E.G. Bowen Lecture at The National Eisteddfod in Llanelli this year (1-9 August) which looks at how the Welsh colonists of Patagonia have adapted to flooding and drought from 1865 to the present day.
Titled ‘Flooding, drought and adaptation in the hydrographic society of Welsh Patagonia’, the lecture by Dr Hywel Griffiths from Aberystwyth will look at the interfaces between the Welsh colonists, their culture and environment as they were forced to adapt to unexpected climatic extremes.
The lecture takes place on Friday 8 August 2014at the Aberystwyth University marquee at The National Eisteddfod from 12pm.
Dr Griffiths from the Department of Geography and Earth Sciences at the University explains, “Looking at the writings of the early Welsh colonists provides an opportunity to reconstruct a chronology of flooding and drought in the area and how they adapted to their new environment.
“Results from archival research and interviews with members of Welsh-speaking Patagonian communities also highlights the importance of the settlers’ experiences in Wales and their cultural memories as they perceived the new landscape in comparison to the environment of Wales with which they were more familiar.”
“Flooding was particularly common in the crucial early years immediately following colonisation and at the turn of the twentieth century, but the harnessing of rivers for irrigation and river regulation allowed the establishment of a flourishing agricultural community.”
The lecture has been established in memory of Professor E. G. Bowen, an internationally renowned geographer with a particular interest in the physical geography and social geography of Wales.
Bowen, born in Carmarthen, was on the academic staff of the Department of Geography and Anthropology at Aberystwyth from 1929, and was still writing and lecturing at the University up until his death in 1983.

Delegation from Trelew (24-05-2014)

A delegation will be arriving in Wales from Trelew, Chubut, Argentina next week

The purpose of the visit is to
1) Strengthen links between Trelew, Caernarfon and the whole of Wales
2) Promote the sesquentennial Eisteddfod in Trelew.

Amongst the delegation will be Hogia’r Wilber – a male quartet - Billy, Hector, Marcelo and Roberto – who’ve recorded for Sain as 4 Patagonia), The President of Cymdeithas Dewi Sant Trelew (The Trelew St Davids Society), the President of Eisteddfod y Wladfa, (Eisteddfod de Chubut) and other members of the Welsh society, The Mayor of Trelew and other town officials, The Director of the Trelew Dinosaur Museum – where the bones of the world’s largest dinosaur lie, and representatives from the field of tourism.

For more details contact Catrin Morris de Junyent,
07512 130787 or


Twinning celebrations between Ysgol Pentreuchaf and Ysgol yr Hendre (27-02-2014)

Ysgol Pentreuchaf, near Pwllheli and Ysgol yr Hendre, Trelew, Chubut have twinned with support from the British Council's 'Twinning Schools' project.

There is pressure on schools today to expand children's horizons by sharing experiences of global citizenship. The British Council offers a 'Connecting Classrooms ' grant for schools to twin with a school abroad. The wish of everyone in Ysgol Pentre-uchaf was to contact with Patagonia Argentina so , when Sara Pierce Jones came to the school as a teacher in September , having just spent a year in Ysgol yr Hendre , Trelew, Chubut, they decided to hold a launch day to begin the process of twinning. By happy coincidence Alcira Williams , a teacher at Ysgol yr Hendre , was in Wales at this time and was able to be involved in the launch. The day started, as in Ysgol yr Hendre , by raising the Argentinean flag . During the day Tami Barma Pritchard taught salsa ; Sara Pierce Jones and Alcira Williams talked about the history of Ysgol yr Hendre and the Mimosa ; Eamon Fullalove, a former head chef with Jamie Oliver , cooked torth ddu (tarta negra) and empanadas ; Myrddin ap Dafydd held a workshop to create a twinning poem. ( The poem has been printed and framed , with a copy on its way to Ysgol yr Hendre and the other will be displayed in Ysgol Pentre-uchaf . ) At lunchtime an Argentinean meal had been cooked by the kitchen staff - ' Muy Rico ' ( Very Tasty ) ! Because resources are so scarce in the colony schools , Ysgol Pentre-uchaf has donated four laptops to Ysgol yr Hendre, and one each to Gaiman and Ysgol Gymraeg yr Andes that will make it possible for the children to skype each other and share experiences .

There will be additional activities held during the year with one massive celebration in 2015 to coincide with the landing of the Mimosa 150 years ago .

Thanks to those conducted the workshops and making the launch day successful; Karen Jones for all her help in organizing and sponsors - Oak Peninsula, Spar and Asda .

Before the day Iwan Madog , of Garndolbenmaen came to the school to give a presentation to the children. Iwan spent two years working with Menter Patagonia and teaching Welsh in the Patagonian Andes. He's just returned for a year - this time to work in the ChubutValley – all under the Welsh language project administered by the British Council.

Best wishes to Sioned Jones , newly arrived in Trelew to begin her work as a Welsh teacher at Ysgol yr Hendrel , and we look forward to working with her on this project .

Twinning celebrations in Ysgol Pentre-uchaf


Bags Packed for Patagonia (17-10-2013)

Wednesday, 23 October, 21 young people from North Wales will venture on a trip of a lifetime to Patagonia, with Urdd Gobaith Cymru and Mentrau Iaith Cymru.

They will be visiting Patagonia for 10 days, and as well as experiencing the unique Welsh-Argentinean culture, they will be doing voluntary work such as helping in the Welsh nursery school, holding team building activities in Coleg Camwy and visiting elderly citizens that speak Welsh.

As part of the visit they had to raise £2,250 each, and all of them have reached their target. Among the fundraising activities organised were a triathlon, comedy night with Tudur Owen, Argentinean wine tasting night and a sponsored walk up Snowdon.

There will be pupils from Ysgol y Creuddyn, Ysgol Dyffryn Conwy, Ysgol Morgan Llwyd, Ysgol Maes Garmon, Ysgol Brynhyfryd, Ysgol Brynrefail, Ysgol y Berwyn, Ysgol David Hughes, Ysgol Syr Thomas Jones and Coleg Meirion Dwyfor on the visit with three members of staff - Eryl Williams and Branwen Haf from the Urdd and Ceri Phillips from Menter Iaith Conwy.

One of the girls going to Patagonia is Lois Angharad from Coleg Meirion Dwyfor. She said, “One of the reasons I wanted to go to Patagonia is because I have family out there. My grandmother has been twice, and I’ve met the family in Wales, but would like to experience their way of life. They live in Gaiman, and my grandmother has already rang them warning them that I am on my way!”

Eryl Williams, who's leading the visit, said, “This is a brilliant opportunity for a group of young people to get a unique and memorable experience. It is great that we are working with the Mentrau Iaith organising this visit as their contribution and advice in Patagonia is priceless.”

Meirion Davies, Menter Iaith Conwy Development Director, added, “This annual visit to Patagonia is a brilliant opportunity for young people to see how precious the Welsh language is and give them a taste of the unique culture of Patagonia. Following the visit and back home in Wales we find that the young people are much more willing to speak Welsh socially which is great to see.”

St David's Day around the world (05-03-2013)

Greetings in English from Trelew, Chubut, Argentina and other places

Ana Chiabrando from Trelew is amongst other welsh people from all over the world on the CJS News radio channel, Cardiff.

To the ends of the earth (14-10-2012)

"To the ends of the earth"
Launch of To the ends of the earth: Memories and recollections of a Welsh Missionary in Patagonia by Mair Davies, edited by Gwen Emyr
Light Refreshments

"To the ends of the earth"
Launch of To the ends of the earth: Memories and recollections of a Welsh Missionary in Patagonia by Mair Davies, edited by Gwen Emyr
Heath Christian Bookshop and Coffee Shop 3pm
122 Whitchurch Road
Light Refreshments

Celebrating Gŵyl y Glaniad in Denbigh, July 2012 (04-08-2012)

Enfys entertains, Gŵyl y Glaniad, Denbigh, 2012

Enfys entertains, Gŵyl y Glaniad, Denbigh, 2012

A good-sized group came together to celebrate Gŵyl y Glaniad in Denbigh Rugby Club on Saturday 28th July 2012.

After enjoying delicious food prepared by the Rev. Wayne Roberts several excellent pieces were presented by parti Enfys (Leader: Leah Owen). Several people from Y Wladfa were welcomed, and they had an opportunity to address the audience. An extremely succesful day - thanks to the Clwyd branch for arranging it.


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