The Tafwyl 2015 festival has managed to break all records to date, according to the organisers Menter Caerdydd.
Over 34,000 people came through the gates of Cardiff Castle over the weekend of July 4-5, 2015 to enjoy the largest Welsh language community festival in the country – the highest number in the history of the free festival since it was established 10 years ago.
This year was the first time that the highlight of the festival – the Tafwyl Fair, was held over two days and on its first day it attracted 22,500 visitors, compared to just over 16,500 on the Saturday last year. The following day saw 11,500 visitors enjoying activities and performances on the first ever Sunday Tafwyl.
Chief Executive of Menter Caerdydd, Sian Lewis says;
“We’re delighted with the success Tafwyl this year. The numbers that came to enjoy Tafwyl Fair is proof that we have succeeded in creating a festival with broad appeal to Welsh speakers and non-Welsh speakers in Cardiff – and beyond. Our target this year was to attract 25,000 visitors and we have reached well beyond that target. This year also saw more activities, more sponsors and more partners than ever before. Tafwyl has grown and grown in response to the increasing demand in Cardiff for opportunities to socialize and enjoy the Welsh language. “
This year over 200 activities and performances were held – from sports to arts, history, music and cooking. Some of Wales’ leading Welsh language bands and musicians performed across three stages in Wales over the weekend. But, as he officially opened the festival Radio 1 DJ and Tafwyl ambassador, Huw Stephens, said that Tafwyl’s “headline act” was the Welsh language itself.
Clwb Ifor Bach organised the music programme for the festival’s Main ands Acoustic Stage and was one of the main sponsors of the festival. Its Chief Executive, Guto Brychan, says;
“It’s been a great weekend. Tafwyl’s appeal is now so strong that people are willing to travel a considerable distance to Cardiff for the weekend to visit it. But alongside that, it’s been great to hear so many Cardiff accents – Welsh and non-Welsh, enjoying and socialising. The atmosphere has been very special. ”
Discussions are being planned between Menter Caerdydd, Cardiff County Council and the Welsh Government, which provides funding for the festival, and are ongoing with The Arts Council of Wales and Cardiff University on how to develop Tafwyl further next year.
Sian Lewis says;
“The momentum of this festival and the practical, cultural and economic impact it has on the city of Cardiff is obvious to all by now. Over the years Menter Caerdydd has developed a great partnership with numerous organisations and companies. Our hope is to harness that and ensure that the spirit of Tafwyl continues throughout the year with more opportunities to socialise in Welsh at the city’s new Welsh culture centre at Yr Hen Lyfrgell (The Old Library). “