Saturday, 13th February, 2016

Protect The Language . . .

     . . . protect our history.   Because, if we do not know about our past, we cannot understand our present and plan for our future.

     Yes, I know I’m a dullard when it comes to learning and speaking Cymraeg – the Welsh language.   I do try, but Welsh speakers are so polite that, when they realise that I’m a struggler, they immediately switch to English.

     It hasn’t always been like that.   I have a friend who recalls that, in rural parts of our land, there were people who really did not speak a word of English.   This was back in the mid-1950s, of course.   Now, due to the advent of television to a great degree, there is probably not one Welsh monoglot in the whole of Wales.   A sad fact, alas.

     Now, thank goodness, a group has been formed specially to protect – and, in many cases, revive – old Welsh place-names.   Those names are an integral part of the history of Wales.   And though a lot of visitors from our neighbour to the East of Offa’s Dyke make fun of those place-names, the language attracts many of those visitors.   They feel they are in a “foreign land”, and we’re right on their doorstep and can be entered without a passport.

     The revision will not only be of the name of villages and towns.   There will be efforts, too, to revive the old names of fields, etcetera!   So a glace at a map will show what went on where.

     I, for one, will renew my efforts to become a fluent Welsh-speaker.

An Historical Discovery

     Right in the middle of truly Welsh Wales, Ceredigion (or, as some still call it “Old Cardiganshire”), a sign of a bygone age has been discovered.   For, beneath a shop in Newquay (Cei Newydd – see, I’m learning), an old tunnel used by smugglers has been found.

      The Ocean Blue is the shop in the limelight, and proprietor David Edwards was told tales of the smuggling trade when he was young.   And this tunnel was used to bring contraband from the local beach into a safe hiding place.   Such stuff as wines and spirits, and even salt, was brought into Wales as part of the trade.

     Of course, someone wants to put a damper on the find by saying it’s the remains of a drainage-system.   But it seems a bit too elaborate for that.

    I trust it will be preserved and kept open – it’ll be yet another visitor attraction!

A Thing To Remember

     A short burst in closing is to remind and/or correct any of you who think that our Welsh NHS is in a worse condition than that of Mother England.

     It is not!   It is no better nor no worse than any other part of the “United” Kingdom’s NHS.

     But, if the current Wasteminster government gets its way, the situation – everywhere – will be much worse.   Let us never sell off that Service which is own by us, the people.

Picture in Archie Lowe, Editor.docimg201

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About Archie Lowe

Though not born in Wales, I have lived and worked here for many years now. I love the place and love that mercurial thing "Welshness". I have been accused of being "a Taffophile" - which is pretty near the truth. The question I ask whenever some idea comes up for the whole of the UK is: "What's in it for Wales". I believe in an independent Wales and am so pleased that our Assembly is a big step on that road.
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