A NIGHT OF JOY AND
ERYRI’S young farmers delivered a poignant retort to council fund cutters by winning this year’s Wales YFC Eisteddfod for the first time in eight years.
The federation won the YFC Eisteddfod the last time it was held at Venue Cymru, Llandudno, in 2009, and it repeated the achievement on Saturday on a night of unbridled joy.
Clwyd’s young farmers were also on a high after finishing second in the overall standings – its best result at the Eisteddfod for 15 years.
In addition the county fielded the Chair winner, Uwchaled Club member Llywela Siriol Edwards, a second year law student at Cardiff University.
Llywela, from Pentre Draw, Pentrellyncymer, duly took her place on the Chair, made by Ysbyty Ifan young farmer Gethin Pyrs and sponsored by Mid Gwynedd NFU.
Clwyd also boasted the day’s best solo music performer, Sion Eilir Roberts of Ruthin YFC, who claimed the Ardudwy Cup. Reclaiming her Crown, as the event’s prose winner, was Pembrokeshire YFC’s Naiomi Nicholas, a Welsh and Drama student at Aberystwyth University who is training to be a teacher.
The crown was crafted by former Rowen YFC member Lowri Wyn and sponsored by Snowdonia National Park.
To cap an almost perfect night for Eryri, the event’s organisers, it also won the Choir competition, its 102 members from eight clubs collecting the Vale of Towy Cup for the first time since the late 1980s.
The county claimed three more accolades: the Dyffryn Nantlle Shield for the Cerdd Dant, the Elonwy Phillips Trophy for the stage section, and the Menter Iaith Sir Benfro Challenge Trophy, for the best two voice party, secured by Dyffryn Madog YFC.
“Going into the event, you just hope the members will perform at their best, that’s all you can ask,” said Eryri county organiser Eleri Evans.
“To win the choir competition made my day and overall victory was the icing on the cake.
“We’ve spent 18 months preparing for this event and I’m so happy that all the hard work has paid off.”
The event, which showcased a cross-section of stunning talents, underlined the important contribution young farmers make to Welsh cultural traditions.
Yet YFC federations in North Wales find themselves under threat from the potential withdrawal of county council funding.
Between them, Meirionnydd and Eryri stand to lose £35,000- a-year from Gwynedd Council, the former taking the bigger hit as Eryri also receives finding from Conwy Council.
However Conwy’s cash is also due to vanish next May in a decision that will also affect Clwyd YFC.
Overall it means Meirionnydd’s income could fall by £21,000, and Eryri’s by around £17,500.
“I hope some councillors were watching the Eisteddfod on Saturday night to see how their money is being used to benefit young farmers, and what could be lost,” added Eleri.
The Eisteddfod was held at Venue Cymru to accommodate its 800 YFC competitors.
Flawlessly run and finishing on schedule, the Ceredigion and Carmarthenshire federations finished joint third.
This year a new Drama Trophy, for the best production, was awarded by Mair Parry and Elin Jones in memory of their father, Will S Jones (Wil Sam), Llanymstundwy.
Made by his grandson, Gwyn Eiddor, it was presented by the family to the inaugural winner, Elin Jones from Llanwenog YFC.
Eisteddfod chairman Bethan Wyn Williams said: “We had a very entertaining and expedient Eisteddfod following months of planning and preparations.”
Modlen Alun from Eryri YFC who came second in the Solo from a musical or a film
Erin Dwyfor Roberts from Eryri YFC who won the humorous recitation 26 and under