A landmark Wrexham pub is set to re-open its doors as a Welsh cultural centre at the end of this month.
Saith Seren (Welsh for Seven Stars) is holding a party weekend on the 27th and 28th January to celebrate the launch.
Back in September Wrexham.com received a tour of the historic listed building.
The pub situated on Chester Street will offer Welsh food, real ale and language classes as well as meeting places upstairs.
Fittingly Y Saith Seren will open on Friday January 27 which is Santes Dwynwen (the Welsh patron saint of lovers) Night with Gwibdaith Hen Frân, a Welsh music act from Blaenau Ffestiniog providing the entertainment.
Tickets are selling well and are available from Siop y Siswrn in the People’s Market and Saith Seren itself.
The official opening will then be carried out by two local legends at midday on Saturday the 28th.
Spencer Harris, former Welsh learner of the year and a key player in Wrexham Supporters’ Trust, from Brynteg, and former Wrexham FC player and manager Dixie McNeil will both officially open the centre.
Saith Seren chair Marc Jones said: “Both Spencer and Dixie in their different ways are local heroes and, as well as promoting the Welsh language and culture in all aspects of Welsh life, Saith Seren is also about celebrating local achievement and pride in Wrecsam. Both Dixie and Spencer have done their bit in making our town somewhere to be proud of.
“That’s why we’re also delighted to have reached agreement to sell Wrexham Lager in the bar. The new lager brewery has been very supportive of our venture, has successfully taken on the big lager companies and that’s also something to celebrate.”
On Saturday night another live band, the Wee Bag Band, from Denbigh will be playing in the bar. They described as a Pogues-like Irish band who are guaranteed to get people dancing.
The centre will also be serving food from its newly installed kitchen and will, in the coming months, be able to rent refurbished offices and hire out meeting rooms in the converted upstairs part of the building.
The intention is to provide a focus for Welsh speakers, learners and supporters of the language and culture in the centre, which is designed to be a permanent legacy of last year’s National Eisteddfod in Wrexham.
The centre is run by a cooperative that has succeeded in attracting members from across Wales and as far afield as San Fransisco. It has appointed Amanda Hughes, from Brymbo, to be the centre’s full-time manager and she will be in charge of staff and volunteers at the centre.
Marc Jones, who is also a local councillor, said: “The centre will provide a warm bilingual welcome for all. We intend to hold all sorts of events at Saith Seren, with regular live music by Welsh-language bands and also local bands. We also want to put on alternative entertainment, such as poetry, film and theatre, as well as offer a focus for the many hundreds of Welsh learners in the area.
“Six months ago, when the Eisteddfod finished, we made our first public appeal for people to join our cooperative. I don’t think anyone believed then that we would be opening so soon but here we are. I hope everyone comes to visit Saith Seren, which is one of Wrecsam’s landmark buildings, to join in the hwyl and see what we have on offer – whether it’s for a meal, an afternoon coffee or a pint.”
For more information on Y Saith Seren or to buy shares in the co-operative you can visit http://saithseren.com/
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