Caerphilly residents of all ages attended a special event last week to celebrate the town’s proud heritage in the run up to St David’s Day.
The event, on Friday, was organised to mark the anniversary of two of the county borough’s most historic occasions – the 60th anniversary of the National Eisteddfod being held in Caerphilly and the birth of Evan James, the poet who composed the words to the Welsh National Anthem.
The Eisteddfod was held in Caerphilly in 1950, and was an important occasion because it was the first time that the ‘All-Welsh Rule’ came into use.
At the time, a set of ceremonial gates were created on the Eisteddfod site at the rear of the castle, but these fell into a state of disrepair over the years. The gates have now been carefully reconstructed on their original site at Crescent Road.
The event also celebrated the bi-centenary of the birth of Evan James. Evan was born in 1809 in a cottage called ‘Bryn Golau’, which stood near the present location of Caerphilly Workmen’s Hall.
Although he moved away at the age of four, Caerphilly is very proud of the fact that this famous composer hails from the town.
Within the grounds of Dafydd Williams Park, near the site of the Eisteddfod Gates, the remains of an old sycamore tree have been transformed into a striking sculpture of a Welsh Dragon. The chorus of the Welsh National Anthem has been inscribed into the tree, surrounded by a medieval shield, referencing the association to the nearby castle.
The Archdruid elect, T James Jones, was present at the event along with renowned Welsh author and historian Gwyn Griffiths. Choirs from Ysgol Gynradd Gymraeg Caerffili, Cwrt Rawlin and Ysgol Y Castell primary schools also performed.
Councillor John Evans, Mayor of Caerphilly County Borough, said: “I am delighted that two such historic and culturally significant occasions for our county borough were marked in this joint celebratory event.
“By marking these occasions in this way, we are able to help ensure that knowledge and promotion of our rich heritage can continue for generations to come.”