The history and future of the Welsh language in Wrexham will be the subject of a free talk by one of its greatest champions.
Organised by Glyndŵr University, O Groesffordd i Groesffordd (From Crossroads to Crossroads) will take place at the new Welsh medium primary school, Ysgol Bro Alun in Gwersyllt, on Tuesday November 19th.
Meirion Prys Jones, former Chief Executive of the Welsh Language Board, will give a talk on how the language developed in the town and what challenges lie ahead for his native tongue, before hosting a Q&A session.
He is excited at the prospect of sharing his passion for Welsh, and said: “This presentation will be a journey through the recent history of the Welsh language as a lesser used or minority language.
“We’ll look initially at the use of the Welsh language in the Wrexham area and then we’ll broaden the horizons and consider the situation of the language at an all-Wales level and also the influence of the Welsh language on a European and international stage.
“We’ll also consider what are the strengths and weaknesses of the current structures that support the language and also whether the position of Welsh is being strengthened or not.”
Meirion attended the Welsh Medium secondary school Ysgol Morgan Llwyd in Wrexham, and later Bangor University, where he graduated in Welsh Language and Literature. He then went on to complete a PGCE course at Aberystwyth University, gaining a distinction in teaching practice.
In his professional career, Meirion became Head of Welsh at Hope’s Castell Alun High School and Ysgol Glan Clwyd in St Asaph before moving to work for West Glamorgan County Council as an Education Advisor for Welsh.
Since 1993, he has been a Registered Inspector of Schools and was appointed Chief Officer of the Education and Training Department at the Welsh Language Board a year later.
Meirion became leader of the Language Planning Team in 2001, Deputy Chief Executive of the Board in March 2003, and in 2004 was named Chief Executive.
He was elected the Chair of the Network to Promote Linguistic Diversity (NPLD) in 2007 and was appointed Director following his tenure as Chair in October 2011.
Meirion said “I’m looking forward to returning to Wrexham, where I attended, some years ago by now, Ysgol Bodhyfryd and Ysgol Morgan Llwyd.
“I’m very grateful to Glyndŵr University for inviting me to make this presentation and I very much hope that everyone who attends will enjoy the presentation and will have an opportunity to think about how we should all be active in the promotion of the use of the Welsh language in the future.”
The event takes place from 6.30pm to 8pm. For information, and to book a place email Sarah-Lou Gaffney at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01978 293575.