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(61,827 posts)
Sat Aug 31, 2019, 04:02 AM Aug 2019

How Welsh independence burst into the mainstream

Even if you've never seen the original Cofiwch Dryweryn mural, chances are you've seen a replica in the last few weeks.

It's one of the more curious symbols of national self-determination you'd be likely to find anywhere in the world: a crumbling stone wall, adorned with a splash of paint, commemorating the loss of a village swept away by a reservoir more than half a century ago .

For years, it's stood watch over a sharp bend above Llanrhystud, reminding travellers on the Ceredigion coast road of what was taken from Wales to provide for England... provided they understood the significance of the message in Welsh daubed across it.

From time to time, it would be given a spot of love - a slight change of colour scheme perhaps, or a re-emphasising of its lettering. But mostly, it stood unchanged in its inauspicious position next to the A487.

Then, in February 2019, it was defaced, with the word Elvis daubed across it - a bizarre nod perhaps to the area's other famous roadside graffiti in Eisteddfa Gurig? Happily, the original wording was quickly restored.

Until this month, when the wall found its uppermost stones knocked down in an act of apparently deliberate destruction.

It wasn't the first time the site had been damaged. But it was the first time that an act of vandalism had so chimed with a growing section of the national mood.

As anger over the damage grew, recreations of the landmarks started popping up on placards, walls, memorials, vehicles, t-shirts, jewellery and postcards the nation over .

The damage itself? It was hastily fixed, with the destroyed section rebuilt, and the wording restored. Shortly before, the words "I'r Gad!" had been added in smaller type - a long-standing slogan of Welsh-language activists roughly translated as "to the battlefield".

Across Wales, the damage to a humble wall unleashed a widespread sense of wounded national pride. And it came at a time of growing momentum for the idea that Wales could - and should - be an independent nation. Polls suggest support for the idea is growing progressively as the Brexit sees the UK turn in on itself and the tone of political debate becomes ever so toxic.

Let's get things in the right order. The damage to the Cofiwch Dryweryn wall is not the thing that has driven people to want independence. But the timing of the situation has served to many as a potent symbol to how Wales's national identity, heritage and values are being threatened by forces outside their control.

If a simple, derelict wall that commemorates an act of exploitation of Wales by its neighbour can not stand without fear of being demolished, it's not hard to recognise the parallels many see with a broader undermining of the nation's current status.


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How Welsh independence burst into the mainstream (Original Post) RandySF Aug 2019 OP
I commented on another thread that if you had asked me in 1979, OnDoutside Aug 2019 #1


(20,006 posts)
1. I commented on another thread that if you had asked me in 1979,
Sat Aug 31, 2019, 06:51 AM
Aug 2019

Which of, Wales or Scotland, would be pushing for independence by 2019, I would absolutely have said Wales. I have been surprised that it has been the Scots who have been the most organised and determined

I feel that the gutting of the Coal and Steel industry by the Thatcher government had a profound and depressing effect on Welshness. That coupled with the lack of success of the national rugby team for nearly two decades, hurt the notion of Welsh independence.

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