Should 2021 Na­tional Eisteddfod be held in Caernar­fon?


Caernarfon Herald - - FRONT PAGE - Eryl Crump

WALES’ largest cul­tural fes­ti­val, the Na­tional Eisteddfod, could be held in the cen­tre of a his­toric cas­tle town in three years time.

The 2021 event is due to be held in Gwynedd but no de­ci­sion has been taken as to where the fes­ti­val will be staged.

But of­fi­cials in Caernar­fon have al­ready de­cided to gauge pub­lic opin­ion about stag­ing the week-long fes­ti­val in the town.

A pub­lic meet­ing will be held later this month to dis­cuss the mat­ter.

Caernar­fon Town Coun­cil clerk Kather­ine Owen said: “In three years’ time it will be the turn of Gwynedd, and the north­ern part of the county in par­tic­u­lar, to host the Na­tional Eisteddfod.’’

She added: “We are keen to see the Eisteddfod be­ing held in Caernar­fon and the meet­ing will help us gauge pub­lic opin­ion as to the strength of sup­port for it.

“The meet­ing will also help set up a group to pre­pare a bid so that when the Eisteddfod board start look­ing at pos­si­ble sites we will not only be ready but will be putting for­ward pro­pos­als that will stand up promi­nently.”

The Na­tional Eisteddfod has been held in Caernar­fon on 10 pre­vi­ous oc­ca­sions. The last time was in 1979 when the main pavil­ion and the sur­round­ing Maes was set up on Ffordd Bethel on the out­skirts of town.

Mrs Owen added: “Caernar­fon has a proud his­tory of stag­ing the Eisteddfod over the years but it has not been held here for nearly 40 years and that is too long.

“Fol­low­ing the suc­cess of this year’s Eisteddfod in Cardiff, when the fes­ti­val was staged in ex­ist­ing build­ings, we are ex­cited at the prospect of do­ing the same in Caernar­fon. There are plenty of build­ings in town which can stage the fes­ti­val.

“The main pavil­ion could be built some­where like Slate Quay or Vic­to­ria Dock and the car­a­vans and camp­ing area at Coed He­len.

“We’ll need to find a suit­able area for Maes B but these are mat­ters that can be dis­cussed and agreed,” she said.

Ear­lier this year, Na­tional Eiste­dod of­fi­cials were in­vited to the Food Fes­ti­val staged in Cas­tle Square.

“That was a huge suc­cess and our data shows there were 35,000 peo­ple in town just that day.

“It shows we can at­tract an au­di­ence to an event in Caernar­fon,” added Mrs Owen.

A Na­tional Eisteddfod spokeswoman con­firmed that Gwynedd is the likely area to stage the 2021 fes­ti­val but added no dis­cus­sions with rep­re­sen­ta­tives from any area in the county had yet taken place.

The pub­lic meet­ing will be held in the Caernar­fon Town Coun­cil build­ing on Wed­nes­day, Oc­to­ber 24 at 7pm.

● Caernar­fon may pitch to host the Na­tional Eisteddfod, which is due in Gwynedd in 2021... a meet­ing will be held later this month to dis­cuss the pos­si­bil­i­ties

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