Friday, 8 July 2016
When I was a difficult teenager my dad blamed it on my ‘Welsh blood’. My mum had a Welsh Grandfather Thomas Lewis who was a Baptist minister. I also had a godmother Nancy who was Welsh and who I loved dearly. She was always ready to listen to me. Her father was an unemployed miner so her parents moved to Kidderminster in the 1930s for a new life. I became pro Welsh and associated ‘unacceptable’ parts of who I am with being part Welsh. For example I was, and still am, too emotional for a typical Englishman of my time! I planned at some point in my life to live in Wales and learn the language. I was horrified when I read how, in Victorian times, school children were punished for speaking Welsh in school! Then I read about how one of the unemployment marches from Wales were greeted by crowds of Welsh people who had moved to Stroud. And Manchester had a Welsh speaking area in Victorian times. Today there is still so much casual racism against the Welsh, supposedly humorous! Anyway tomorrow my choir will be singing at the Eisteddfod, again something I always planned to visit but not sing at. Wow, this is going to be special.