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Archive films to inspire creative project

During February, the National Screen and Sound Archive of Wales will be taking part in a project with the people of Blaenau Ffestiniog – a project which will combine elements of film, poetry and music in a new and innovative way.

At the centre of the project will be a collection of archive films from the National Screen and Sound Archive of Wales’s collections, located at the National Library of Wales, in Aberystwyth. The archive films include footage of a football match between Tanygrisiau and the Urdd in the 1930s and the opening of the Memorial Hospital in the town during the 1920s, which recently closed amidst local opposition and protest. It is hoped that these archive films will inspire those taking part to create new film, poetry and music.

Organisers are appealing to all local residents who might be interested in being part of the project, and are asking them to attend the information session at Ysgol y Moelwyn on Wednesday, 19 February at 6pm.

The project will reach its climax with a live show in Cell B, Blaenau Ffestiniog on Wednesday evening, 26 February. The show will combine the archive films, with the newly created films, poetry and music.

Co-ordinating the project on behalf of the people of Blaenau Ffestiniog is local musician, Gai Toms. Gai said:

"I love combining elements of poetry with music and looking forward to creating something brand new with the community, and in partnership with our National Library.

Gai will be joined by author and poet, Sian Northey, and film-maker Owain Llŷr, who will be mentoring and leading the workshops.

Anwen Pari Jones, Access Management and Development Officer, National Screen and Sound Archive of Wales said:

"The project is very exciting and we are glad to be part of it. Not only is it an opportunity for us to share our collections with the community, but it’s also a chance to see how the films can inspire creativity in the form of new music, films and poetry.

This project is one of a series of events arranged in Blaenau Ffestiniog by the National Library of Wales, as part of their annual outreach programme. Children from local schools took part in an education workshop arranged by the Library’s education department, and a film screening was held in Cell B back in November.

On 22 February, some of the Library’s staff will be at the Women’s Institute Hall on Wynne Avenue. This will be an opportunity to make new contacts and inform the members of the public of the various services the Library can provide. Staff from Reader’s Services will be on hand to answer questions on the family history resources and general enquiries about the Library’s collecions held at the National Library of Wales.

Staff from the People’s Collection Wales project will be there to promote the importance of preserving and sharing of materials related to the local heritage and history. Visitors will be welcome to share their stories on the day and photographs by Gwilym Livingstone Evans of Blaenau Ffestiniog will be featured on the People’s Collection Wales website with the hope of triggering memories.

Tickets for the Blaenau: Heddiw, Ddoe a Fory show are available from Siop Lyfrau’r Hen Bost, Blaenau Ffestiniog – 01766 831 802 or For more information, please contact Anwen Pari Jones on 01970 632 535 or