Welsh MP angry as Brexit festival rebranded – and will discuss Welsh independence
A festival originally plugged as a celebration of Brexit has been rebranded and will even explore Welsh independence, causing consternation among Conservative MPs.
The £120m project nicknamed Festival of Brexit was originally billed as a celebration of the UK’s future outside the European Union, but has now been rebranded as Unboxed and will make little mention of its origins.
The UK-wide festival will take place next year, and will include a TV drama set in a near-future Wales which could be independent from the UK.
Welsh Conservative MP David Jones, who campaigned for Brexit, told the Telegraph newspaper that he was “shocked” that it seemed Brexit had been airbrushed from the celebration of the UK.
He said: “Brexit is the rebirth of the United Kingdom as an independent nation. It is something that we should be celebrating and this is a huge opportunity to do so. I very much hope that reference to Brexit will be made in future. A lot of colleagues will wish to take this up with new Culture Secretary, Nadine Dorries.”
The projects include Galwad which will explore the story of a future Wales in 2052. The organisers are canvassing people across Wales to help devise a future that is not necessarily “utopian” or “happy”, which will be included TV drama and a series of live performances, with independence and the climate crisis potentially factored into the fictional world.
Inspired by the Well Being of Future Generations (Wales) Act, the project has been developed by Collective Cymru, a partnership of organisations and creatives led by National Theatre Wales across science, technology and the arts.
Deputy Minister for the Arts and Sport, Dawn Bowden, said of Galwad: “We are looking forward to an exciting celebration of creativity, based on co-creating, and involving communities right across Wales.
“The work of Galwad will champion the Well-being of Future Generations Act, our creative talent and will showcase Wales on an international stage. It will invest in the creative and technology sectors, creating opportunities for under-represented talent and supporting the creative industries as we emerge from the pandemic with investment and job opportunities.
“We have pledged to improve our social, cultural, environmental and economic wellbeing through creative solutions to problems that affect our future. This project is a call – an invitation – to join that conversation.
“We also look forward to welcoming the other four projects which will be working in Wales as part of a number of events next year.”
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