History of the Eisteddfod

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A Brief History of Longwell Green Eisteddfod

After the Second World War, the Longwell Green community decided that they needed to re-create the pre-war community spirit. So, after fund raising, various activities were arranged.

In 1947, Mrs Kath Hook and some of her friends organised and ran an Eisteddfod. It was based on the traditional Welsh Eisteddfod but it was to be a one day only event. In this instance it was held on Sunday and local people were invited to a day of music, singing, dance, speech and drama. It was held in a nearby temporary hut. This was to be the start of the Longwell Green Eisteddfod.

It proved a success and continued to grow until 1975 when Kath decided that a committee was needed to run the ever-growing numbers of competitors entering the Eisteddfod. Four secretaries were appointed and each one was invited to be responsible for one area of activity. At the same time, a treasurer was appointed to manage the financial affairs.

Since that time, the population of Longwell Green has increased significantly. The Eisteddfod has followed this growth trend and in 2018 classes ran for a full week, at times needing to use two rooms in the Community Centre.

2019 saw the merger between Longwell Green Eisteddfod and Kingswood Eisteddfod.

Our thanks go to Margaret Molton for contributing this history.

A Brief History of Kingswood Eisteddfod

Kingswood Eisteddfod started in 1943 and took place in various Halls in Kingswood and nearby Staple Hill. In the 1963 programme that we have in our archives, it shows that the Vocal section was the largest section taking 6 days ( 2 adjudicators on each day), followed by Music (Piano and Instrumental) taking 4 days, then Dance for 2 days and Speech and Drama for 1 day. The days were long in most sections as they ran from 9.00 in the morning until 9.00 at night. Over the years Dance increased and became the largest section.

Unfortunately over the last 5 years, due to lack of volunteers we were unable to find people to run  the Vocal and Music sections. We carried on with the Dance and Speech and Drama sections for 3 years, then due to a problem with our venue we were unable to hold either section any more. After several weeks trying to find another suitable venue, we took the decision to disband and fortunately we have now been able to amalgamate with Longwell Green Eisteddfod, and become the Longwell Green and Kingswood Performing Arts Festival, so both names are still there.

Our thanks go to Rosemary Powell for contributing this history.

Cover of the Kingswood Eisteddfod programme of 1963.

Cover of the Kingswood Eisteddfod programme of 1963.

Inside of the 1963 Kingswood and District Eisteddfod programme.

Inside of the 1963 Kingswood and District Eisteddfod programme.