Culture

Council wants Welsh language to be ‘part of everyone’s lives’ within a decade

27 Sep 2021 3 minutes Read
Newport City Hall. Picture by Roland Turner (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Rhiannon James, local democracy reporter

Newport City Council has said it wants the Welsh language to be part of everyone’s lives within the next ten years.

It has published a draft plan aiming to increase the number of Welsh speakers in Newport through education, visibility and employment.

A public consultation into the draft Welsh in Education Strategic Plan opened on Monday, September 27, allowing residents to have their say on the plans.

Councillor Jason Hughes, the council’s Welsh language champion, said: “We want residents to be a part of this process as this will be a long-term strategy to bring Welsh into everyone’s lives.

“Welsh is living, vibrant and vital and we want to ensure that all residents, whatever their age, have the opportunity to learn and speak their national tongue. Our message is to see, hear, learn, use and love the language. Let us know if you think our draft plan will help us achieve that ambition.”

Currently 20.5% of people in Newport can speak fluent Welsh, placing the local authority in 15th out of 22, just below Swansea.

Council leader Jane Mudd said the council aims to increase the number of places in Welsh-medium schools within the next ten years.

Following the opening of Ysgol Gymraeg Nant Gwenlli this month, Newport now has four Welsh-medium primary schools.

Ysgol Gyfun Gwent Is Coed opened in 2017 and is Newport’s only Welsh-medium secondary school.

‘One million Welsh speakers’ 

Cllr Mudd said: “We recognise there is still more we can do to help achieve the national target of one million Welsh speakers by 2050 and increase the percentage of those who use the language every day.

“We want our national language to be part of the fabric of the city, woven into every aspect of people’s lives. The draft plan is the next step to making that ambition become a reality and we want to know what you think of it.”

In 2017, the Welsh Government created its Cymraeg 2050 strategy, which aims to reach one million Welsh speakers and double the daily use of Welsh by the year 2050.

The council’s Cabinet Member for Education, Deborah Davies, said young people are the key to the future of the Welsh language.

Cllr Davies said: “It is a gift they will have for the rest of their lives.

“Welsh is not just something that should be preserved and treasured as a significant part of our heritage, but something that should be nurtured so it can continue to flourish and enrich lives in the 21 century.”

The public consultation on the plan will be open until November 22.

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Grayham Jones
25 days ago

Welsh is the first language in wales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿

Robert Williams
Robert Williams
25 days ago

I’d love it if 20.5% of Newport’s inhabitants spoke Welsh fluently, but I’m afraid I don’t believe it.

Steve
Steve
20 days ago

It’s the official, publically available figure, provided by the professional statisticians of the Office for National Statistics, whose whole purpose is to collect such data accurately, published in their most recent Annual Population Survey, for the end of March.
Thanks for your warm positivity though – we’re all so thrilled to hear the hot news that Robert thinks he knows better.

Richard
Richard
25 days ago

I remember as Chair of the Public Sector committee of the WLB going to see the then leader of Newport Sir Harry Jones to ‘ discuss ‘ the Councils need for a comprehensive Welsh Language Scheme ! In 33 years as an elected member at County, Borough and Town level – one of the most challenging meetings I’ve ever have ever had !! What a long way Dinas Casnewydd has come . One of the two Welsh speaking Newport Councillors told me that those at that time who spoke our ancient tongue …did so almost ‘ as consenting adults and… Read more »

Vaughan
Vaughan
25 days ago
Reply to  Richard

Diddorol clywed am eich profiad! Galla i ddychmygu mor heriol y basai’r cyfarfod o’r fath wedi bod bryd hynny. Ymddengys fod pethau wedi newid er gwell ond mae’n anochel y bydd peth negyddiaeth yn aros o hyd gwaetha’r modd. Cafodd fy nhadcu ei fagu yn y dref ( fel y bu ar y pryd yn hytrach na dinas) ac roedd e’n llugoer ei agwedd at werth y Gymraeg a dweud y lleia’. Ond roedd ei rieni wedi symud yno o Fryste yn y bedwaredd ganrif ar bymtheg i chwilio am waith fel y rhan fwya o boblogaeth Casnewydd sy’n ddisgynyddion… Read more »

Richard
Richard
25 days ago
Reply to  Vaughan

Da I clywed Vaughan

Ymlaen at y cam nesa mewn stori Casnewydd 👍🏼

Andrew Thomas
Andrew Thomas
25 days ago

Da iawn casnewydd I hope all comes to fruition

Stephen Owen
Stephen Owen
25 days ago

Da iawn 😊

j humphrys
j humphrys
25 days ago

The way to go, and I’d better get moving too, having been far too lazy lately!
Diogi!

Last edited 25 days ago by j humphrys
John Davies
John Davies
25 days ago

Casnewydd is where I live. I am proud to live in the town which was the site of the last big armed rebellion against the English crown. Now ask yourself; what language did most of the rank-and-file Chartists speak? Not English!

Mr Williams
Mr Williams
25 days ago
Reply to  John Davies

I live in north Wales but I love to visit Casnewydd. Always makes me feel very proud when I see the plaques on the pavements commemorating the bravery of the Chartists. Love Casnewydd!

Barry Lovell
Barry Lovell
24 days ago
Reply to  John Davies

Chartism was all over Britain. So, yeah, they did.

Richard
Richard
24 days ago
Reply to  Barry Lovell

Chartism was certainly not all over the counties of these Islands but certainly exhibited itself in small parts of each. Other examples eg R/Riots the Luddites and rural resistance in the Highlands and of course in the west of Ireland with some degree of similar protests emerged but no united movement / communication I guess the issue?

John Davies
John Davies
24 days ago
Reply to  Barry Lovell

By “the rank and file Chartists”, of course I meant those involved in the Casnewydd rising. That should have been obvious from context. If you know anything about the history of the period, of course you will know England had its Chartist movement too.

Dr David Berry
Dr David Berry
25 days ago

Newport and Chartism

Dr David Berry
Dr David Berry
25 days ago

I do apologise for my previous, erroneous message. John Davies of course is correct that Newport was indeed ‘the site of the last big armed rebellion against the English crown’ and thank you John for that. It was an important seat also for Chartism, but unlike Manchester with its wonderful People’s Museum, the council in Newport not only destroyed the Chartist mural, but also have not replaced or introduced a site worthy of celebrating the Chartists. The miserable plaques alone are a disgraceful recognition of that historic period. It’s just another example of the woeful Council failing to celebrate and… Read more »

Cath Lloyd
Cath Lloyd
24 days ago

So much has changed since I grew up in Newport in the 60s and 70s. I came from a family where my mother was first language Welsh and didn’t speak English until she started school and my father went to Welsh chapel although he was more comfortable in English. I however was unable to learn Welsh in School despite French German and Latin being compulsory in Bassaleg School in those days. My parents thought their Welsh wasn’t good enough so the only Welsh I learnt was to recite poems on St David’s Day. I have however become fluent as an… Read more »

Colin Mann
Colin Mann
24 days ago
Reply to  Cath Lloyd

da iawn Cath

Colin Mann
Colin Mann
24 days ago

Congratulations on the progress of yr Iaith Gymraeg in Newport. 20.5% quoted above was a pleasant surprise

Robert Williams
Robert Williams
24 days ago
Reply to  Colin Mann

A very big surprise – and more than welcome if true. But, as stated above, I don’t believe it is. Perhaps we could have a source?

Wrexhamian
Wrexhamian
24 days ago

Perhaps it includes schoolkids who’ve achieved a certain level of competence, in which case it’s plausible, and good news for the future.

Robert Williams
Robert Williams
24 days ago
Reply to  Wrexhamian

Could well be, but even so it seems a bit of a stretch to me.

Steve
Steve
20 days ago

See above Robert.
I see posting your unjustified negativity once wasn’t enough – apparently we have to hear it several times.

Daf
Daf
22 days ago

Mae digon i neud eto, ond bendant ar y trywydd cywir!

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