Culture

Free entry for Urdd National Eisteddfod 2022 as organisation celebrates its 100th birthday

07 Dec 2021 3 minutes Read
Children wearing an Urdd Eisteddfod 2022 hoodie. Picture by Eisteddfod yr Urdd.

The Urdd have announced that entry to the National Eisteddfod next year, which is set to place in Denbighshire, will be free. 

The announcement comes following confirmation of £527,000 funding from the Welsh Government to allow free entry to the event which will be held during May half term during the organisation’s centenary year. 

Education and Welsh Language Minister Jeremy Miles said he was “delighted” to support the “wonderful festival”.

“I hope that as many people as possible take up the opportunity to attend and celebrate the organisation’s hundredth year,” he said.

“It’s testament to the work of the Urdd that so many adults reflect fondly on their experience of attending the Eisteddfod and competing when they were younger.

“The Urdd Eisteddfod is not only a cultural highlight of our Welsh calendar, but also a fantastic way for our children and young people to see and hear our language, speak it themselves, and take part in the many competitive and social events on offer.”

As a result of the pandemic, the Denbighshire Urdd Eisteddfod was postponed until May 2022. Virtual festivals – known as Eisteddfod T – replaced the main event in 2020 and 2021 due to the pandemic. 

The Urdd National Eisteddfod is one of Europe’s largest youth touring festivals and usually attracts over 90,000 visitors. 

‘Missed out’

Urdd Chief Executive, Siân Lewis said she was “extremely grateful” to Jeremy Miles MS for confirming that Eisteddfod will be free to attend.

“It will be the largest national youth arts festival held in Wales since the beginning of the pandemic, and offering free entry will ensure it’s a festival for all,” she said.

“We are proud to be an inclusive organisation which is open to children and young people from all backgrounds. We hope to attract more visitors and competitors from all parts of Wales, including those from deprived areas.” 

Director of the Urdd Eisteddfod and Arts Department, Siân Eirian added: “Registration for competing at the 2022 Urdd Eisteddfod has opened today (7 December 2022), which makes this a timely announcement. Individuals, schools, and local ‘Adrannau’ and ‘Aelwydydd’ can now start to think and plan for the competitions. 

“Children and young people have missed out on so many cultural activities as a result of Covid, so we’re looking forward to the Eisteddfod immensely, after having to postpone the festival for two years. The support we’ve had from local volunteers and Denbighshire County Council has been fantastic, and we’re excited to continue working together over the next few months to make the Urdd centenary Eisteddfod an unforgettable event.”  

Due to the current guidelines regarding Covid-19, over 220 local and regional Eisteddfodau will be held in the spring but without audiences. It has also been decided that all those competing in stage competitions in the 19- and 25-year-old category will go straight through to the Eisteddfod in Denbigh. 

Further information regarding the local and regional competition rounds is available on the Urdd Eisteddfod website. 

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