Posted: Wed 14th Dec 2022

Civic speeches given at “momentous occasion” of city status conferral by King Charles III released for people living in or visiting the Wrexham area
This article is old - Published: Wednesday, Dec 14th, 2022

‘Brymbo Man’, the Gresford mining disaster, Ruabon red brick and Comic Con were all referenced during wide ranging speeches recognising Wrexham becoming a city.

The people of Wrexham past and present were very much the focus of the civic speeches given at the conferral ceremony at St Giles’ on Friday, in a celebration of the ‘richness and diversity’ of the former town now city.

The historic industrial past was noted, with the current modern strength of Wrexham detailed with one of the largest industrial estates in Europe.

Unfortunately Wrexham’s only media based in Wrexham, Calon FM and, were unable to get inside St Giles to report direct or capture the speeches and service contemporaneously. On the day strict embargos were broken by Liverpool radio, and connectivity issues delayed the sharing of content outside the royal rota bubble.

Despite the event in St Giles’ being a historic civic event for the now City, no details on what Wrexham’s civic representatives said in the service was made public or reported.

Yesterday morning the civic service in St Giles’ was referenced by councillors in the Executive Board meeting, giving a hint to its contents, with Cllr Dana Davies responding to a report on the use of the Welsh language, saying, “It was interesting that the council led event on Friday which the King and Queen Consort attended, had more welsh spoken over King himself, in contrast to the service” with an implication that a two line blessing was possibly made in Welsh.

On Friday evening we asked Wrexham Council if we could be provided with copies of speeches given by the Mayor, the Leader of the Council and the Chief Executive.

Yesterday afternoon Wrexham Council has provided details, copied below in full, along with the below video they commissioned from inside the event plus noting there are further images on an updated post on their news blog.

The speeches give are copied below, with the three civic speakers talking on a specific theme:

Mayor : Theme – The People of Wrexham

  • Your Majesties, Vice Lord Lieutenant, High Sheriff, Bishops, First Minister, Representative of the Secretary of State, Members of Parliament and the Senedd, Councillors and special guests welcome to this momentous occasion……..
  •  ……A Celebration of Wrexham and the award of City Status
  •  We welcome both King Charles III and the Queen Consort specifically to confer this special honour upon us, which was formally recognised in the letters patent from her late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II
  •  It is a warm Welcome to Wrexham, and the Parish Church of St Giles, this wonderful architectural jewel that with its magnificent tower is one of the seven wonders of Wales
  •  Our people of course are our real jewels and shine a light on the richness and diversity of Wrexham
  •  They say over 70 different languages are spoken here
  • Our different backgrounds include those who from early on worked the land, those who settled here with industry and created our rich mining and steel industrial heritage, surviving disasters like that at Gresford which took the lives of 266 miners in 1934
  • In more recent times we have seen Wrexham communities grow with links to Poland, Portugal, Syria, Afghanistan and the Ukraine
  • City status helps us all, as individuals and communities, to have the confidence to believe we can grow and develop, whilst retaining our identity, it helps raise our aspiration and make real our future dreams

Council Leader: Theme – Place of Wrexham

  • Wrexham is a beautiful part of North Wales, the UK and the World……
  • Stunning scenery, post-industrial villages, sheep, coal tips, a World HeritageSite, two unique National Trust properties and of course the oldest international football ground in the world
  • Wrexham has it all; from the beautiful Ceiriog Valley heralded by Lloyd George, to places to the North of the City with a unique Roman history, to large housing estates including the largest in Wales, from the Rural Maelor eating into the English Border in the east, to the western hills harbouring the beginnings of time with ‘Brymbo Man’ and the legacy of our mining, steel and brick industries and that is what has shaped us
  • We are the major urban centre of North Wales its ‘Capital’, now one of the four key cities in Wales, and a driving force in the national economy with one of the largest industrial estates in Europe. Wrexham businesses lead in the manufacturing, service sector and most recently in public health and vaccination
  • The award of City Status means we can truly fulfill this role, have a national and international voice, helping raise the profile and unique identity of Wrexham, North Wales and Wales
  • This unique identity is most obviously apparent with Wrexham’s close link to the armed forces and the barracks and to football as the founding place of the Football Association of Wales, the home of Wrexham AFC now linked with Hollywood glamour, and the historic Racecourse Ground
  • We are the spiritual home of Welsh Football and can now proudly say to everyone………
  • ‘Welcome to the City of Wrexham’

Wrexham Council Chief Executive : Theme – Culture of Wrexham

  • What is it that defines Wrexham, as you have heard key components are our people and our places
  • these two aspects of our culture as well as our link with football and the armed forces are some of the unique ingredients of our Wrexham City
  • Other defining characteristics often cited about us are friendliness, our edgy or punkiness, our entrepreneurial spirit and our playfulness
  • During times of conflict from the Middle Ages to the present day Wrexham sitting on the border Marches of England and Wales has remained the place that people can still come together to trade, to go to market, to do business, seek sanctuary, make friends and settle
  • Entrepreneurs and artists such as Thomas Telford, John Wilkinson associated with Brymbo steel, Philip Yorke the last squire of Erdigg, RS Thomas have been a part of forging Wrexham – Ruabon red brick, Wrexham Lager and Wrexham AFC are global commodities
  • Music and festivity is a part of our soul with festivals like Comiccon, Focus Wales and Wal Goch having their births here
  • We have a history of amazing play schemes and adventure playgrounds empowering young people to take the steps into a wider and older world whilst retaining their sense of creativity and adventure
  • City Status is the next step on our journey, we have our challenges in taking these next steps and believing we can fulfill our dreams
  • City Status helps our people, place and culture grow in confidence and purpose
  • As we said on our city of culture journey ‘we rise together’, we now rise together with the affirmation of being recognised as a city
  • Diolch yn fawr iawn

As we reported on Friday, King Charles III speech was shared as below:

“Boneddigion a boneddigesau,

“Mr Mayor, Leader of the Council, Chief Executive, Ladies and Gentlemen,

“My wife and I are absolutely delighted to be with you in Wrexham today to celebrate your becoming a city.

“As you know, city status was granted to eight different communities in order to celebrate my late mother’s Platinum Jubilee.

“As we now mark this historic occasion, we also look back, with mingled sadness and pride, at that extraordinary reign, during which, as you know, my mother’s great love for Wales was always apparent.

“It is thoroughly fitting that we should celebrate the creation of Wales’s newest city in the setting of this magnificent church, which truly deserves its designation as one of the Seven Wonders of Wales.

“Of course, as no fewer than six of the seven Wonders are in North East Wales, we cannot help but think that whoever wrote that famous anonymous rhyme – Pistyll Rhaeadr and Wrexham steeple, Snowdon’s mountain without its people, Overton yew trees, St. Winifred’s Well, Llangollen’s Bridge and Gresford’s bells – must have been from this part of the world!

“A little earlier today, I had the opportunity to see one of the other wonders of Wrexham, namely the football club, which is busy putting Wrexham on the map as never before. And, of course, this comes after the Welsh national team has brought unprecedented international recognition to Wales through qualifying for the World Cup.

“The motto of Welsh football – Gor-au Chwar-ae, Cyd Chwar-ae – sums up the spirit of community, and of joint endeavour, which is so important to Wales, and which, over the years, I have come to know and value more than I can possibly say.

“So, ladies and gentlemen, as you celebrate your new-found status for this very special part of the world, nothing could give me greater pleasure than to say llongyfarchiadau and to wish you every possible success for the future.”

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