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A large audience of people standing on grass watching a performer on stage holding a microphone. The background of the image shows, grass, trees, marquees and the structure of Cardiff Castle with a moody sky above.

University of South Wales & Menter Caerdydd

The Challenge

  • To re-establish the Tafwyl Festival following the pandemic and to provide a programme that caters for all ages, with particular focus on engaging socially disadvantaged young people with the arts.
  • To instill the Welsh language and culture into the lives of young people, as the cornerstone of Cymraeg 2050, the initiative to have one million Welsh speakers by 2050.
  • To demonstrate USW’s commitment & continued support to the Welsh language and the arts in Cardiff.

The Solution

Tafwyl worked with local schools, many from disadvantaged areas of Cardiff, to engage children in enjoying Tafwyl’s children-focused participatory arts activities through the medium of Welsh.

Through the partners’ support, Tafwyl introduced new marketing strategies across the Cardiff City region to attract a larger footfall to the event. CultureStep investment funded the children’s area and arts activities.

The Results

31,000 people attended Tafwyl 2022, with a significant increase in the number of young people attending, approximately 10,000. The project engaged children and families from all areas of Cardiff, regardless of their background and financial situation, to enjoy quality children-focused activities for free in an iconic setting in the capital city, which met and even exceeded expectations and extraordinary feedback was received.

Tafwyl enabled the University of South Wales to elevate its reputation as an institute passionate about the Welsh language and culture. A dedicated marquee enabled visitors to speak to USW staff members, take part in activities, and discover events coming up at Cardiff campus, elevating USW’s presence within the Welsh community and Cardiff. Many young people were given the opportunity to visit and rehearse at Cardiff Campus during Tafwyl Fringe Week, offering first hand experience of what is available on their doorstep and an opportunity to consider a future studying for a career in the creative industries bilingually or through the medium of Welsh.

The Endorsement

Tafwyl 2022 made a successful return to Cardiff Castle this year, and the partnership enabled us to curate a high-quality programme of activities at the kids’ area, and made a huge contribution towards the infrastructure and site costs that are vital for the festival to run successfully. Having use of the University of South Wales’s high-class facilities for workshops and rehearsals was also advantageous, contributing to the programme of events during Tafwyl Fringe Week, enabling Tafwyl festival to happen beyond Cardiff Castle, allowing more people to experience and enjoy Tafwyl related events beyond the castle walls. The partnership between the USW and Menter Caerdydd is based on a mutual understanding and respect of the Welsh language and culture within the creative industries and local communities, as we strive to connect the arts and language to local young people, regardless of their background, and continues beyond the festival, with workshops happening all year round, allowing children and young people the opportunity to experiment and create under the tutelage of experienced mentors. We hope to continue the partnership once again at Tafwyl 2023, with the aim to make the festival even more accessible for children and families from all backgrounds.

Caryl McQuilling, Tafwyl Chief Officer