The wait is over - there's just a day left before the National Eisteddfod opens in Abergavenny. Held during the first week of August every year (29 July – 6 August 2016), this 8-day festival is a celebration of the culture and language in Wales. The festival travels from place to place, alternating between north and south Wales, attracting around 150,000 visitors and over 250 trade stands and stalls.
history of the Eisteddfod in Wales can be traced back to 1176, with the modern
history of the organisation dating back to 1861. The festival has been
held every year, other than 1914, when the outbreak of the First World War saw
it postponed for a year. It was last in Abergavenny in 1913, so it’s a rare
opportunity to have this colourful festival on our doorstep.
Eisteddfod is the natural showcase for music, dance, visual arts, literature,
original performances and much more. Encompassing all aspects of the arts
and culture in Wales, it is an inclusive and welcoming festival, which attracts
thousands of Welsh learners and those who do not speak the language, as well as
Welsh speakers every year. Translation services are available for many of
the competitions, bilingual information is freely available and there is a
special area for those interested in learning Welsh.
of Wales’ leading writers, musicians and poets have competed at the Eisteddfod,
with many performers appearing on a national stage for the first time during
the festival. Well-known performers who started out competing in the
Eisteddfod include actor Ioan Gruffudd, bass-baritone Bryn Terfel and soprano Katherine
a competition-based festival, it attracts over 6,000 competitors every year in
the fields of music, singing, dancing, literature, poetry and art. While the
competitions form the central focus for the week, the Maes (literally the
‘field’, pronounced ‘mice’) itself has grown and developed into a vibrant
festival with hundreds of events and activities for the whole family.
as Wales’ leading mobile regeneration project, Eisteddfod week is the highlight
of a two-year community project, bringing together people of all ages and
backgrounds from a different part of Wales every year. Local singers have
come together to form the official Eisteddfod choir that will perform in the
festival, and many local people are volunteering as stewards.
also a superb opportunity to showcase this beautiful part of Wales. Local
businesses and tourist attractions are pulling out all the stops to ensure that
the 150,000 visitors have a fantastic experience both at the Eisteddfod and
while enjoying the other delights in the area. For anyone wishing to find some
tranquillity, away from the buzz of the festival, we’re encouraging them to
take a stroll along the Monmouthshire
& Brecon Canal
to discover another aspect of the region’s heritage.