You’ll know I love Welsh slate… so I was over the moon to hear that there’s a Welsh Slate Festival this July! Not only that, but it’s also being held in my hometown of Blaenau Ffestiniog – can’t think of anywhere better for a Welsh Slate Festival!
(The Bro Ffestiniog rugby club with the slate tips in the background)
The week kicks off on Saturday 14th July with a procession following the quarrymen’s historical journey from their place of work to the centre of town, including an opportunity to hear, the ‘fanfare’ to celebrate Llechi Cymru’s nomination for World Heritage Status. This is followed by the Gig Car Gwyllt – a Welsh music gig being held at the rugby club. It promises to be a night of Welsh music and will have some fantastic Welsh acts on stage including locals Anweledig.
That’s not the only music going on… there’s also acoustic music going on at Caffi Mari, Llyn Tanygrisiau and a stomp music session at the King’s Head (aka Tap), Tanygrisiau on the Sunday.
(The Conwy Valley line heading off into the distance and past Pant Yr Afon Powerstation)
There will be a number of guided walks going on including Remembering Cwmorthin (Sun/Mon/Fri) and Town Character Walk (Mon). Both walks are free but you will need to register for the events over on Eventbrite.
In addition to the guided walks there’s also a guided tour of Rhiw Capel which is the studio of world renowned artist David Nash. And a guided tour of Melin Maenofferen where you will hear about it’s history and efforts to protect and restore it. Llechwedd will also be hosting an open doors event at Pant Yr Afon Hydro Powerstation which is still working an generating power to this day. (These are also a ticketed event and you can register your interest by emailing email@example.com)
All week there will be various exhibitions going on at the library including:
- watercolours by Falcon Hildred
- exhibition of Victorian Era clothes (courtesy of Seren Cyf)
- old documents and books from the Archives.
If the music and tours is not enough, then there’s also other actvitites going on inclyding Collecting and Sharing Memories session at the library (Mon), film night at Cell B where they’ll be showing historical Welsh films (Mon), Llys Dorfil open day where you’ll learn about the history of Blaenau before the arrival of the slate industry (Tues), a discussion about founding Sbyty Stiniog (Tues), taste a quarryman’s supper at the Pengwern which includes discussion about the “Caban” (Thurs), another film night at Cell B this time showing the film Adlais and a talk from James Davoll, (Fri) and a family craft session of Slate Sketching also at the library on Saturday (21/7).
Wow that’s a LOT going on! So let me summarise with this handy little image (click on the image to see the full size). My personal top choices for the week would be:
- Cwmorthin and Town Character walks
- collecting and sharing memories session
- slate sketching session at the library.
Ah who am I kidding… I want to do it ALL!!! Unfortunately I won’t be able to attend as I am actually away on holiday that week. How do I feel about missing the Slate Festival? GUTTED!
If you want more information then head on over to Llechi Cymru’s Facebook page. Details of the events are on their events page as well.
Are you excited about the Slate Festival? Will you be going?
(Thank you Llechi Cymru – Wales Slate for the information!)