10 ways to save the Welsh language

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Mrs. Tom Lew, Blaenau Ffestiniog.
Guest
Mrs. Tom Lew, Blaenau Ffestiniog.

Deallt bod rhai Dysgwyr/ Dechreuwyr yn gorfod troi’r i’r saesneg weithiau…ond bod y dylerswydd arnoch fel person Iaith-Cyntaf i’w gynorthwyo trwy barhau yn Gymraeg….peidiwch â’u dilyn trwy troi i’r saesneg!

Mabon Tseina
Guest
Mabon Tseina

Beth dych chi’n meddwl am y sefyllfa y gymraeg ym Mlaenau Ffestiniog heddiw?

Mrs. Tom Lew, Blaenau Ffestiniog.
Guest
Mrs. Tom Lew, Blaenau Ffestiniog.

Mae yn baradwys imi i fod yn medru cerdded i mewn i unrhyw siop ym Mlaenau Ffestiniog a dechrau cyfrarthrebu yn Gymraeg… ond wrth gŵrs deallaf bod gostyngiad yn y rhifau..rhaid gwneud popeth i atal dirywiad bellach.. Ysgol y Moelwyn, Ysgol Manod ac Ysgol Maenofferen efo Athrawon a Llwyodraethwyr penigamp.. a gwersi /cyfleuon i ‘r Dysgwyr (sy’n oedolion) dysgu ac ymafer. Gwersi : Llyrgell Blaenau Ffestiniog pob prynhawn Dydd Mercher. Grŵpïau Sgyrsïo : Canolfan Goffa Ffestiniog pob Dydd Iau. A Cell B pob bore Sadwrn. …ac Siop Llyfrau (Siop yr Hen Bost) bendigedig ar y Stryd Fawr.

Russell Todd
Guest
Russell Todd

Mae hyn wedi digwydd i fi sawl waith dros y blynyddoedd. Cytunaf yn llwyr y dylai’r siaradwr iaith gyntaf cynorthwyo yn Gymraaeg

Mrs. Tom Lew, Blaenau Ffestiniog.
Guest
Mrs. Tom Lew, Blaenau Ffestiniog.

Ie dwi wedi ymwneud efo llawer o ddysgwyr dros y blynyddoedd…nifer ohonynt yn ‘cwyno’ bod pobl iaith cyntaf yn troi dim ond i’r saesneg ar ôl iddynt cael dipyn o anhwylister a gorfod defnyddio tipyn o saesneg…os gwelwch yn dda ..cynorrthwyo ni trwy parhau i siarad yn Gymraeg. Roedd fy merch yn Brif-ferch Ysgol John Bright ym 20015 ac awgrymodd hithau y dylai pob athro dechrau pob sgŵrs yn Gymraeg …yn aml iawn mae Dysgwyr yn deall ond jyst ddim yn clywed y geirfa’n ddigon aml (pan maen’t yn dod o deulu di-Gymraeg neu’n byw mewn ardal di-Gymraeg) i ddatblygu… Read more »

Carl Morris
Guest

Byddwn i’n ychwanegu gemau cyfrifiadurol i’r rhestrau.

Bydd lot fawr yn anghytuno am gael biliau ayyb yn Gymraeg. Mae hyn yn waith i rywun. Oes tystiolaeth gyda thi sy’n dweud bod gwella’r amgylchedd ieithyddol yn hollol amherthnasol i werthfawrogiad o’r iaith, yn enwedig ymhlith plant?

Dyl
Guest
Dyl

Some really interesting and good points there! I also think Welsh music helps encourage the use of Welsh, music in Welsh shouldn’t just be on Welsh radio stations but English stations within Wales too if we could ask them, it would get Welsh music and the language to a broader audience, plus English language radio stations play some foreign music sometimes, so why not play music from a native language? They do it in other countries, and it would encourage the next generation of Welsh music artists, it introduces it to people who can’t speak Welsh, and I’m sure there… Read more »

sibrydionmawr
Guest

Interesting points. When he was alive, John Peel probably did more to promote Welsh language bands than BBC Cymru, which is quite ironic. As a result, I think that Welsh language acts gained more kudos by being played by someone who wasn’t Welsh, broadcasting a programme that was probably widely listened to all over Europe.

Nicky Roberts
Guest

Very interesting article. I’m a relatively new speaker of the language, I started speaking Welsh around Christmas 2016. I don’t call myself a learner and haven’t done for at least about 9 months as I’m now at a level where I am more or less fluent. I moved to Ceredigion from the Rhondda – and I’ve got a whole social circle and mates who only communicate in Welsh. A lot of good points raised. Welsh language music being key! For me it is almost criminal that you get bands like Yws Gwynedd, Swnami etc – whilst they might not be… Read more »

squimple
Guest

Da iawn ti. wnes i dechrau dysgu am yr un pryd. Ond dywedaist ti dwyt i ddim dysgwyr bellach. Mae gwahaniaeth ymdangos rhwyg y dwy ohonon ni sy’n chi wedi gael mwy profi siarad yn cymraeg pob dydd. Dyna pwynt! Trio creu mwy cyfleoedd i siarad bob dydd. Dw i wrth fy modd yn gwrando i cerddoriaeth cymraeg hefyd. Mae’r problemau ydy’r dywilliant yn Saesneg o popeth yn Saesneg. Rhan o dysgu cymraeg ydy syweddoli bod llawer mwy i mwynhau yn y byd i gyd tu allan dywilliant Saesneg. Dydy bobl ddim yn disgwyl clywed iaith eraill ar y radio,… Read more »

Nicky Roberts
Guest

Sut dych chi Squimple!? Oedd neis iawn i glywed bod ti’n dysgu’r iaith hefyd. Dw i wedi cael lot o profiad o siarad yr iaith achos oedd fy ngwraig a fi ddechrau yn yr un amser. Felly oeddwn i’n siarad llawer yn y ty – gwneud cangymeriadau yn y ty cyn mynd mas i’r tref! Ti hollol wir efo beth wedais ti! Ni angen mwy o cyfloedd i glywed yr iaith yn byw normal – S4C yn dda, ond fel y saes yn gweud “You’re preaching to the converted”. Dyn ni angen pobl fel BBC ac ITV i ddangos pobl… Read more »

Josh
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Josh

More fun Welsh apps sites and youtube videos for learners up to advance would be great.
Everyone learns differently.

Shops like Tescos sell books in English lots of shops selling things like cards in English, they need to start selling Welsh stuff for Welsh speakers and learners.

Muddy Valley
Guest
Muddy Valley

Tescos etc operate on a purely commercial basis. If t here is sufficient demand they will stock it.

Nicky Roberts
Guest

The question perhaps is: How many of us Welsh speakers are actually taking the time out to contact Tesco and ask for products in Welsh? How many of us are using the “Welsh option” at the Self-service tills etc. How many of us are going in there and starting every sgwrs yn Gymraeg?

The longer we spend doing the English thing because it’s the “done way”, the worse off we’ll be.

Rob Bruce
Guest

The Co-Op, however, doesn’t. Maybe we could start there. Get yourself elected to your local Society. Push for our rights from within, what claims to be at least, a progressive organisation.

sibrydionmawr
Guest

The Co-Op would be a great p;ace to start, as they also claim to have community values at the heart of what they do. Many other organisations also claim similar, so perhaps it’s about time people like us started to challenge what that actually means when most of them show a dearth of real recognition to our national language.

Edeyrn
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Edeyrn

“Tescos etc operate on a purely commercial basis” ,,, highlighting the problem … companies should have some duty to local communities…not worthless profit ….. there are deeper truths to life than a few percent increase in profits

sianiflewog
Guest
sianiflewog

Ifan: llawer o bwyntiau da fan hyn. Cytunaf efo rhai, anghytuno efo eraill. Ond cyfraniad i’r ddadl – diolch. If i could make just one adjustment in Cymru, i would introduce mandatory equal presence Cymraeg/English on all packaging and marketing material. Tesco cheapo beans already has several languages on the tins: Turkish, Slovakian Czech Hungarian and so on. No-one, as far as i know complains about the presence of these. Whilst i hate Capel for what it’s spineless approach has allowed to occur to our language, the translation by the Church of England of the bible into y Gymraeg, undoubtedly… Read more »

Rob Bruce
Guest

My experience of Belgium is that they don’t do bilingualism, except maybe for in the Brussels metropolitan region. In Flanders, everything is Dutch, there are no concessions to French at all, There are historical reasons for this – French was once the language of prestige in the low countries, even the official language of the Royal Family of the Netherlands, and Flemish monolingualism in public life (ironically, of course, now being threatened by English) is a reaction to that. Maybe Belgium can teach us about how successful the Fro/Arfor concept could be, but the other side to it, a wholly… Read more »

Davydh Trethewey (@MawKernewek)
Guest

This example I found in a shop in Cornwall (Thornes, which is a local grocery chain): https://twitter.com/MawKernewek/status/955745536530894848 The languages on the front of the packaging are English and Icelandic, with ingredients also listed in Swedish on the back. “Having a Welsh language TV channel has served the language well since the 1980s but the idea of a single Welsh channel will have become old hat by the time our children are adults.” – not really, it has been old hat for about the last 20 years i.e. since digital TV has been widespread. Where else in the world is stuck… Read more »

Kieron Matthews
Guest

Dylech ddim wedi ysgrifennu’r erthygl yn gymraeg?

sibrydionmawr
Guest

Fel rhywun sy ‘di dysgu’r iaith fel oedolyn yn 27 oed ‘nol yn yr 80au mae gen i sawl pwynt i godi. Roedd ‘n fudiad i hybu’r sin roc a gwerin o’r enw CRAG, (Cyngor Roc a Gwerin) a ddaeth i ben dros ryw ‘sgandal’ am gael ei ariannu dwywaith o goffrau’r llywodraeth, fel grant uniongyrchol at bwrpas y mudiad ac hefyd fel grant o S4C. Dwi’m yn cofio’r holl stori erbyn hyn, (ond mae ar gael rhywle) ond oherwydd hyn daeth y mudiad i ben. Ond rwy’n dal i gredu bod angen rhywbeth tebyg er mwyn ddenu’r ieuanc i… Read more »

Benjiman L. Angwin
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Benjiman L. Angwin

Dyn ni’n colli geiriau ar gyfer bwyd ar raddfa gynyddol o erchrydus. Hoffwn i weld deddfwriaeth er creu diwydiant pecynu cynnyrch yn y Gymraeg yng Nghymru, fel bo modd i bobl weld enwau (nouns) ar gyfer bwydydd yn y Gymraeg.

Wylys (auborgine), golwyth (cutlet), lleden (plaice), brwysgedlys (coriander). Dyn ni’n colli geiriau fel hyn heb ddeddfwriaeth pecynu.

Geraint Rees
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Geraint Rees

Reading Gas & Electric bills is difficult enough, without having to read them in a language which is not your mother tongue.
That doesn’t apply to me because I don’t read Welsh, but I’d fight for others to have the choice.

Ffred Ffransis
Guest
Ffred Ffransis

Yr ystyriaeth bwysica o ran creu siaradwyr Cymraeg yw eu bod yn byw yng Nghymru. Y gwaedlif o allfudiad o Gymry ifainc yw”r bygythiad pennaf. Dim ond hanner un o ddeg pwynt sy’n trin hwn Y cyfraniad pwysica yw’r galwad am ganolbwyntio ar oedran 15-35, falle wir 12-30. Nid yn unig ddylanwadu ar eu hagwedd at y Gymraeg ond yn fwy sylfaenol greu’r ewyllys i fyw yng Nghymru. Ie swyddi, ie cartrefi addas, oe cysylltiadau trafnidiaeth i’w galluogi i fyw mewn cymunedau gwledig, ie diwygiadau amaeth …..ond hefyd roi iddynt gyfrifoldeb gwleidyddol a chymunedol am lunio’r dyfodol. Canolbwyntiodd ymgyrch Rhyddid… Read more »

Kay Pitt
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Kay Pitt

I’ve recently retired to Wales and am one of hundreds of learners. I’d love it if Welsh speakers in service industries automatically started conversations in Welsh (as if it was France), it would be much easier for learners to have the courage to reply. Also if all the many Welsh speakers always used the language in public, that would help make it the norm in areas where people think the English language is spoken more. I’ve been very grateful that first language Welsh speakers have been enthusiastic about my faltering efforts.

Janet MacKenzie
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Janet MacKenzie

I do so agree, Kay. If Welsh speakers started conversations automatically in Welsh it would make it so much easier for shy speakers like me to plunge in and have a go. At the moment I often spend embarrassing moments stalking the staff in shops to see if they speak Welsh to anyone else before speaking to them myself. Silly, I know, and not everyone is as diffident. But the thought of taking a big breath and asking something in Welsh only to get a funny look and an Estuary English reply tends to dampen my enthusiasm, while those kind… Read more »

Hywel Moseley
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Hywel Moseley

Last night I spent an idle 3 hours or so before going to bed in catching up on the first 2 instalments of ‘Craith’ on i player.. What a dispiriting experience! Apparently everyone under the age of about 65 speaks a bastardiised version of Welsh containing a huge number of English words and expressions. If I were to invent a statistic I would say that about 25% of some utterances were pure English. So far as I recollect the only characters who spoke good colloquial Welsh were the dying retired policeman and the shabby (and violent) old mother of the… Read more »

Rob Bruce
Guest

Fi’n absoliwtli gyted i glywed hynny, Hywel.

gaynor
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gaynor

Hywel the probelem is that S4C commission these noir dramas – Craith/Y Gwyll/ Un Bore Mercher , written in English by non Welsh speakers and are then translated literaly and badly – into Welsh – thsi habit is taking over and is a travesty – there are some fine Welsh scriptwriters about who could write natural colloqiual Welsh eg – Rownd a Rownd probably the best soapy dramam series on TV. Stopped watching the noirs as the welsh countryside is seen through the prism of townies from piontcann and beyond who thingk that nobody has repapered their living rooms since… Read more »

Dafis
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Dafis

You over simplify the “problem” with S4C and TV in general. Despite the proliferation of available media/channels due to advances in technology much of the mainstream is still engaged in churning out low grade bullshit for the “masses” or the mass market. S4C is politically constrained to replicate the stances of the major UK players, BBC, ITV, SKY, and hence your mix of “fashionable noir”, chat shows, visits to celebs homes ( ychafi ! ) superficial current affairs ( max 25 mins), repetitive soaps, with occasional splashes of stuff deemed to be uniquely Welsh, like noson lawen, annual folk/clog dancing,… Read more »

JD
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JD

An obvious one that no one has discussed-

Pay Welsh-speaking parents to have more children. This already happens in Italy to increase the birth rate.

If every Welsh couple has five or six children, then we would be getting somewhere.

Simon G F
Guest

Exactly. Welsh-speaking couples having big Welsh-speaking families, and their children in turn having big families, and so on, is how language and culture grows. Nations are strengthened from the bottom up, not the top down. For our government to protect our culture and language it must ensure a healthy economy where such growth is viable and desirable – something it is currently failing miserably to do. Government language programmes and targets will not suffice.

If that requires paying people to create large Welsh-speaking families as an interim measure, then so be it.

Pen-Cloch
Guest
Pen-Cloch

This would require Welsh Speaking persons to fall in love with each other which might be straightforward if they stay in the Fro Gymraeg but the further they stray from the language the less likely they are to marry and breed. There used to be a dating site for Welsh Speakers, could this not be resurrected? We appear to be waiting on ‘lwc, siawns a ffawd’ or luck, chance and fate’ whereas a Welsh Government which is serious about the Welsh Language would bring in ‘English Not’ as opposed to ‘Welsh Not’. A element of compulsion, not in education but… Read more »

Muddy Valley
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Muddy Valley

Would this ‘English Not’ initiative also apply to those born and bred and living in Wales? By 2023 would we be fining and beating such folk? This could potentially include up to 80% of the indigenous population! Interesting thought though…..

Pen-Cloch
Guest
Pen-Cloch

Yes! It is obviously a measure of desperation and last option. Maybe the closer we get to 2050 could the beatings and fining become more frequent. Say 2041 after the Census figures for that decade.

Muddy Valley
Guest
Muddy Valley

The idea of paying one section of society to have more children, presumably at the expense of other parts of society – resources are finite – personally, fills me me horror. What next, provide preferential support to families of a specific faith or ethnic grouping? Would there be degrees in Welsh language parental proficiency to determine payments, would there be lump sums based on the child’s abilities? Sorry but this could never be the way forward for me, have we not learned the lessons are all to recent history?

Edeyrn
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Edeyrn

Chill out no one is seriously saying this, although it happened in Ireland after independence.

“slippery slope” argument is a logical fallacy

Muddy Valley
Guest
Muddy Valley

As my late Irish grandmother often said ‘many a true word spoken in jest’. She also used to, with an ominous glare, talk about ‘slippery slopes’ and ‘no smoke without fire’. Bless her.

Ximi
Guest
Ximi

While living in southern Africa, I was fascinated by their approach to multi-lingualism in the media. For example, you do get the totally Afrikaans (rather stuffy and conservative) radio and TV stations and similar services for other groups like Zulu and Xhosa but the most popular commercial stations and programmes seem to move seamlessly between different languages. I used to listen to OFM in the Free State which is a largely English commercial station that would have scheduled news broadcasts in Afrikaans alternating with English ones. Adverts are often in Afrikaans as well as English and sometimes in Sotho. The… Read more »

Finlay Macleoid
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Finlay Macleoid

Why has so little work been done on this crucial sector worldwide? I am often taken aback at how little information and courses that are available for developing the language of the family and home anywhere in the world. The Moray Language Centre has been working on this area since 2011 but I first started on this sector in 1985 after parents said they wished to develop their Gaelic at home and in the family especially where only one parent or neither parent spoke Gaelic but wanted to see a change of language or a bilingual Gaelic-English home created. The… Read more »

Finlay Macleoid
Guest
Finlay Macleoid

I wonder if the following is of use to the Welsh Language. Developing the Gaelic Family and Home Sector The Moray Language Centre have developed the following courses and information handbooks for the new sector related to the language of the family and home. We realise this is a small selection for parents who wish to bring Gaelic into the Family and Home to what will be required in order to create stable language communities development in the long term. 1) The Family Language Action Plan. (Language Planning in the Home with one, two or neither parent Gaelic speaking). 2)… Read more »

Gwilym ab Ioan
Guest

“It’s pointless trying to revive the leaves on a tree (the language) – if the tree is being poisoned at it’s roots (the poison of education in it’s present form)” Any nation that is to survive requires three basic things. 1. It’s language 2. It’s culture 3. Knowledge of it’s own history and traditions. Since the Compulsory Education Act of 1870 came into force our nation has been subjected to the influences of our governing colonial masters. This has been an attempt at eradication of our knowledge of ourselves, and the preservation of our unique identity through the education system… Read more »

CambroUiDunlainge
Guest
CambroUiDunlainge

Something I just absolutely pester everyone about is number 3. In a sense which applies to the present day of course. But its a case of which one of those three things has the best chance of building a modern united Welsh nation? Welsh folk who are educated from the British perspective will have that innate view of keeping Welsh language and culture at arms length (the colonised self loathing view stems from here as I’m sure you know) in favour of “British” culture. Personally find that colonisation through the education system fascinating (I studied it for my degree long… Read more »

CambroUiDunlainge
Guest
CambroUiDunlainge

Though to correct you on one point I believe it was the 1902 education act which saw an end to schools run by non-conformists. It was always baffling to me why my grandfathers eldest siblings could speak Welsh but he could not and being Baptists turns out non-conformists schools were pushed out by the Anglican sect in the Conservative Party at the time.

Gwilym ab Ioan
Guest

Indeed. You can teach a parrot to speak Welsh, it doesn’t make him a Welshman. Whilst there has been a huge focus on the language, and the promotion of Welsh medium education schools, with the assumption that it will be a ‘cure all’ – if we can get everyone to speak it. It does not take into consideration that our future as a nation depends on more than uttering Welsh words. You can’t make a plait with less than three strands, lose one and you’re in difficulty, loose two and you’re doomed. Focusing on the Welsh language on it’s own… Read more »

SAB
Guest
SAB

Teaching Welsh History as a priority is vital to fuel loyalty to the Welsh language on youngsters who may not be aware of the struggles that have been fought to preserve the right to speak Welsh in Wales. Encouraging employers to adopt Welsh speaking initiatives is a good way of promoting the language in a work context as well. I’m really enjoying learning to speak Welsh and would love a Welsh Speaking Initiatve in shops and in companies in Wales

Jason Morgan
Guest

One really simple step – which won’t save the language but would be SUCH a simple thing to do – would be to have a Welsh option on mobile phones or tablet devices, and I’m not talking about the actual apps but just the basic interface. You can in Irish and Catalan among many other smaller languages, so why not Welsh? I can’t imagine it being a very complex thing to do, it’s just a matter of doing it. Another would be to normalise the use of Welsh interfaces on PC’s particularly the still-dominant Office programmes which actually have this… Read more »

sibrydionmawr
Guest

Agree with you completely. I have posed the question a few times now on these pages as to why the Welsh Assembly Government hasn’t coughed up some cash to get the Android interface translated into Welsh. As you say, it’s hardly rocket science, just a bit of work changing default entries on a locale file. If an Android device can have an interface in Icelandic then I’m damn sure it should have one in Welsh. Given that Android is the world’s most popular operating system, there needs to me far more focus on it than there is as far as… Read more »

Janet MacKenzie
Guest
Janet MacKenzie

Excellent article. Just as a positive footnote: I wonder how many Welsh speakers and learners in Wales are aware of the worldwide interest in Welsh? Websites like Say Something in Welsh (https://www.saysomethingin.com/welsh/level1/intro) and Duolingo (https://www.duolingo.com/course/cy/en/Learn-Welsh-Online) have learners all over the world. SSIW and Braw Media have created maps flagging learners all over the globe: https://www.google.com/maps/d/viewer?mid=1-u0oiFfAO1EAw8FaczzWKRKXmdw&ll=44.06430349553396,-110.30114724999999&z=1 and http://braw.media/help-map-the-welsh-language-around-world/ I am a Welsh learner – with no Welsh connections at all – of just over a year, living in Germany, where of course practice opportunities are few. I’m part of a lively international online community closely following and encouraging suggestions such as… Read more »

cathasturias
Guest

Manylyn, ond mae’n bwysig imi: cytuno gyda Benjiman ar enwau bwyd, e.e. angen cadw ysbinbysg yn ogystal â draenog môr…ond gas gen i’r gair ‘wylys’. Piwsyn/piwsod yw’r berejenas neu aubergines yn ein gardd a’n cegin ni a byddwn i’n annog pawb i iwso nhw neu wrth gwrs feddwl am air gwell.

Cymru Rydd
Guest

Really good, thought-provoking article. If I were granted 3 main priorities to be followed to promote and empower the Welsh language in Wales( let’s abandon all this negative and doom-laden talk of “saving the language), I would go for a short term, mid-term and long term approach. 1. Short-term: Establish ARFOR( a single authority for Mon, Gwynedd, Ceredigion and Caerfyrddin operating through the medium of Welsh) immediately. We are half-way there already following Ynys Mon’s decision to follow Gwynedd’s example. Saunders Lewis said with his usual prescience that any Welsh Government established in Cardiff would all be in vain as… Read more »

Sian Kent
Guest
Sian Kent

Dim ond ysgolion Cymraeg i bawb sy’n byw yng Nghymru !Dim air o Saesneg ,felly bydd rhaid iddynt siarad Cymraeg.Pan oeddwn yn byw yn Canada roedd cyfle i blant ddysgu Ffraneg trwy “French immersion schools”,popeth yn Ffraneg

Andrew
Guest
Andrew

Y gwir yn erbyn y byd – The truth against the world.If we are not aware of our past,we dont really know what our future should be like.Teaching Welsh (native british history) is key to giving our young people the vision to grasp millennia of a proud culture.unfortunately our history has been air brushed from view and replaced by a germanic version where only the history of foreigners is recorded- the romans.saxons and normans.This historial consensus is now regarded as the truth but the real truth must be taught to our children if the language and culture is to flourish.

Trailorboy
Guest
Trailorboy

On the subject of learners. Why aren’t we really actively promoting some of the things that really work. We want more learners and welsh for adults may be fantastic, but it’s simply not easy for working people to access and sign up – you need to have some commitment before you even think of starting – also unless you’re retired you have to spend a fair amount of money. There are plenty of great intensive courses, but they cost money and you have to be determined and have a reason to start. Coffee mornings are great, but most of us… Read more »

boicymraeg
Guest

I think there are some excellent ideas in these comments, the post and the original ideas by Elin Maher that inspired it. Three additional points that haven’t been mentioned yet (I don’t think): 1 – Producing more content in Welsh is all well and good, but we are now at the point where a good, publically accessible repository for this – especially film and television – is decades overdue. There are hundreds and hundreds of hours of Welsh-language content – much of it paid for to a great extent by public money – which are completely inaccessible to the average… Read more »

Tudor Rees
Guest
Tudor Rees

thank you for this article. I think point 10 is of great importance, as we have significant immigration, mainly from England and we need to develop a strategy to raise the awareness, and secure the support of these people in promoting the Welsh Language. we need to approach this in a positive manner as people like Janet Mackenzie and Kay Pitt, can offer crucial support. I would start by pointing out to visitors that they too have a Brythonic Heritage. One of the problems in present day Britain is that the majority of those living in England think that the… Read more »

sibrydionmawr
Guest

The problem is that the vast majority of people moving to Wales from England have zero interest in the Welsh language, and see it as one of the less positive aspects of living in Wales. Most come here because the housing is relatively cheap, the landscape is spectacular, and because there are already other colonists here, getting brown rice in the local wholefood store is easy. Very few arrive here with any intention of integrating.

Muddy Valley
Guest
Muddy Valley

A pretty sweeping statement. In my experience a majority (albeit small) do arrive with the intention of integrating. Perhaps the way forward is to understand the motivations and mindsets of these very welcome folk with their positive contribution to the economy and work with that rather than making seemingly unfounded statements based on prejudice. Brown rice indeed, I am advised that sourcing chia seeds is the main problem!

Dafis
Guest
Dafis

your statement that the (small) majority of people moving to Wales intend to integrate rings true only if you relate it to a period way back in the post 1945 to say mid sixties. At that time numbers were fewer and those who came to buy farms, or work in various careers, tended to get stuck in, many actually making the transition within the time it took their kids to grow into young adults, mastering a sound level of spoken Welsh and immersing themselves in local social activity. That is not the picture today. The so called Fro Gymraeg is… Read more »

sibrydionmawr
Guest

I don’t think that many of them care anything like enough, and if you have the temerity to challenge them, you get labeled a ‘racist’, which is kind of ironic. These kinds of people are so hypocritical, paying lip service to such things as intersectionality, but yet seem to forget that in Wales, it’s a pretty glaring omission to not include the Welsh language in that – which shows to me the sheer hypocrisy and virtue signalling of these group thinking idiots.

sibrydionmawr
Guest

A sweeping statement maybe, but no less true because of that. And far from being prejudice, it’s the result of personal experience, and far from unfounded. I lived for a number of years in West Wales, so I am very familiar with the virtual apartheid that exists there. My experience chimes with that of Dafis, and there is indeed a definite chronological cut off point where the cultural situation changes radically. I’ve met numerous people who moved to Wales in Sixties and early Seventies who came here initially out of curiosity and found that they liked the place, settled down,… Read more »

Trailorboy
Guest
Trailorboy

Many often say the targets are simply targets and not ambitious enough and thats true.

What we need is an ambitious plan for fifteen million Celtic language speakers by 2030. Proposterous – yes, but challenging and infinitely more exciting.

PS if you’ve got Irish ancestry and think thats crazy then surely you’d be up for the crac.

Davydh Trethewey (@MawKernewek)
Guest

WolframAlpha estimates the total population of the Celtic nations to be 20 million: http://www.wolframalpha.com/input/?i=population+of+brittany+%2B+population+of+loire-atlantique+%2B+population+of+Wales+%2B+population+of+cornwall,+uk+%2B+population+of+scotland+%2B+population+of+republic+of+ireland+%2B+population+of+northern+ireland

I’ve not included the Isle of Man because it wont let me write any more in the search bar but this is less than 100,000.

Trailorboy
Guest
Trailorboy

And many many more outside of those nations like to acknowledge their Celtic ancestry – which applies to just about everyone in Europe this side of the Rhine and quite a lot the other side as well. There’s a bigger pool to tap into than the 20 million in the countries themselves.

apgras
Guest
apgras

I seriously doubt that there are only 150,00 first language Welsh speakers in England – I know of at least 100,000 from my school!! But you’re not allowed to put Welsh as your first language on the census if you live in England. I would love to know the true amount. Say it’s about 250,000 – 300,000, then there’s almost 900,000 speakers, and a few more in Scot / Ire. If we were a city Welsh speakers would be the second largest city in Prydain. Lets all move in. 3 x the amount of people than Iceland. Attracting them back… Read more »

Muddy Valley
Guest
Muddy Valley

Hi Apgras, which school did you attend, on what basis do you estimate 100k are first language speakers living in England?
Your data could certainly raise a few eyebrows here and there.
Let’s not get to carried away though – the population of Greater Manchester in 2.5m, Greater Glasgow 1.2m and Birmingham 1.1m, even Liverpool and Cardiff (where 85% have no knowledge of Welsh) are about 900k.
An almighty task. Should it be a priority? If so how?

apgras
Guest
apgras

Most sources say 100 – 150,000k. https://calls.ac.uk/wp-content/uploads/4844.pdf – it was 110,00 in 2001. My city of Cymraeg speakers if of course tongue in cheek, I’m just trying to use it as a way of showing how large a group we are on a global level and that we could more than pay our way 🙂 I would target the brightest school students and provide them with summer placements in their local area, so they keep ties with the area – sense of place and pride. Invest in a scheme that offers an attractive package to set up businesses in their… Read more »

sibrydionmawr
Guest

I think it’s stretching it a bit far to claim that 85% of people in Cardiff have ‘no knowledge’ of Welsh. Granted, that proportion may not have more than a smattering of Welsh, but they would have few problems with many Welsh language phrases, such as greetings etc. Many learn a little Welsh, as they feel it’s important to be able to at least show some solidarity with their children/grand children. And even though there may not be more than about an eighth of the capital’s population able to speak Welsh, most parents are very supportive towards the language. I… Read more »

Finlay Macleoid
Guest
Finlay Macleoid

You create Gaelic communities by having Gaelic in the families and homes.

Is that not the same in Wales?

Bendigedig
Guest
Bendigedig

We need to look at every age group to see where the problems are. 0-4 lack of Welsh language childcare. The cylchoedd meithrin tend to be for a few hours a day, only really suitable for children who have one parent at home. Lots of parents work full time now and need childcare from 8-6. How many of those nurseries are Welsh-medium. We also need to look at the standard of Welsh spoken in the so-called Welsh-medium or bilingual nurseries. Many of the workers there can’t really have conversations in Welsh. School – pupils in primary school are often being… Read more »

Bendigedig
Guest
Bendigedig

” I certainly found that most Cardiffians had some basic knowledge of Welsh when I spent some time as a Welsh language tutor” If you’re relying on your experience of being a tutor, then surely you mean people who sign up for language classes rather than Cardifians in general. An English friend asked a Cardiff woman how to say the word Heddlu, which is shown on every police car, and she replied she’d never seen or heard the word. Lots of people have absolutely no interest and the older generation often weren’t taught anything at school. Some people know Bore… Read more »