Mark Mansfield, Nation.Cymru CEO
We know we’re not allowed to climb actual mountains in Wales at the moment – but perhaps you could help us climb a metaphorical one?
Over half a million visitors came to Nation.Cymru last month, and a million over the last three months.
The peak of our ambitions – Wales’ having its own independent, not-for-profit national news media, owned by and run for the people of Wales – is within sight.
It’s thank to you that we have got this far. You’ve made it happen by visiting the site. You’ve made it happen by writing for us. And almost 500 of you have made it happen by donating to us.
Thank you to all of you for your support. Thank you too to the Welsh Books Council and all our advertisers for their support, too.
But can we get to the top of the mountain, and turn this site into something much bigger and better?
Today is the day Wales finally gets its own Parliament – and it is a year away from the next Senedd elections. What better time than now to finally realise the dream of an independent truly national news service for Wales?
What do we need to make this a reality? Well, there’s no way of skirting the issue. It’s paying subscribers. We don’t want to fill the site with ads and clickbait articles that don’t do anything to advance our national conversation.
Only funds invested in the service will allow us to continue expanding our content, and by doing so our audience and reach.
We now have half a million people reading Nation.Cymru a month. Can we find 1,000 subscribers who want Wales to have its own vibrant national media? If so, you can join in here.
Why is this so important?
As previously mentioned, in exactly a year from today, Wales will be going to the polls for the 2021 Senedd elections. With Wales (hopefully) recovering from the coronavirus pandemic, they will likely be the most important elections in the history of our parliament.
Crucial decisions about how Wales’ economy, health service, education service and much more besides will be made by whoever takes charge that could define what kind of nation Wales is for decades.
We want you and all the people of Wales to play a big part in that election, and the way we want to do that is to make sure that the people of Wales are informed about their vote.
Unfortunately, at a time when scrutiny is more important than ever, things are looking darker by the day for Welsh media. Newspapers and websites that were already struggling for subscribers and advertisers have been paralysed under lockdown.
Commercial media was already in a steep decline in Wales, but coronavirus may well speed up that demise.
If we are going to have a viable national news media in Wales this time next year, it will ultimately only come about through our own efforts as the people of Wales – if we want to see it happen, we will have to go to our pockets and pay for it.
We are not asking you to take a shot in the dark at a project that promises big things but with no guarantees. Nation.Cymru, which was grown massively in both content and readership in under three years, has a proven track record of making things happen, not just talking about them.
In three years we have gone from 75,000 readers a month to over 550,000, and we continue to grow year on year. And we have a plan in place for how we are going to continue to build that audience.
We know that not everyone will be able to give a few pounds a month, especially in the midst of this current crisis, but hopefully, others will.
We have never had very deep pockets in Wales. But we have never needed deep pockets – all of our successes in the past have come from a communal response, a lot of pockets giving very little, but together – a lot!
Today we finally have a Parliament in Wales. But in a functioning democracy, political institutions are only half of what you need. A nation also needs a national media.
If people don’t know what their compatriots are up to, if they don’t know what their fellow Welshmen and women think, and what decisions their elected representatives have made, then Wales might as well not exist at all.
It’s the counterbalance that our new Parliament needs – news by the people of Wales, for the people of Wales. But most importantly, a voice for the people of Wales.
With Nation.Cymru’s success in attracting readers, we have a unique opportunity to make that happen. So please, support us today.