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Bring along undiscovered treasures to the Eisteddfod

02 August 2010

Do you have family heirlooms in your home related to the First World War? Maybe a diary written on the front line by a relative or a collection of letters put away for safe keeping at the back of a drawer?

Visitors to this year’s National Eisteddfod are invited to bring along artefacts from this significant time to one of two special roadshows taking place at Cardiff University’s Pavilion on the Maes on Tuesday 3 August at 11am, and again on Friday 6 August at 11am.

Cardiff University’s School of History, Archaeology and Religion has launched a new project to give people across Wales the chance to share their forgotten treasures and family history with the rest of the nation.

Led by Dr Gethin Matthews, Welsh Voices of the Great War Online is a digital community heritage project that seeks to gather and make public artefacts and memorabilia which remain in private hands.

Everything from letters and diaries, postcards and newspaper clippings are sought by the team. They’re also interested in hearing about stories passed down from generation to generation about the war.

Speaking about the project, Dr Matthews, a lecturer in Welsh History at the School of History, Archaeology and Religion said: "The Great War is one of the most significant events in world history and the project’s main aim is to investigate the huge local impact it had on Wales. We’re hoping that it will really capture people’s attention and encourage them to contribute."

People can take part in the project by going along to roadshows across Wales or by uploading images and information to the project’s website at:

Roadshows will be held in Wrexham, Newport, Aberystwyth, Swansea, Blaenavon and Llanberis.

Once catalogued, the material will be made available to everyone through The People’s Collection website, a major initiative funded by the Welsh Assembly Government to be launched at the 2010 National Eisteddfod in Ebbw Vale.

"The idea is that schools, organisations, academics and the public will be able to access the collection in order to discover new insights into Welsh perspectives of the Great War," said Gethin. "The collection will also shed new light on the differences in the reactions to war of people in North Wales and South Wales, or between industrial and rural areas of the country. Some of the findings are sure to change the way we think about the impact the war had on Wales."


Notes to editors

1. Cardiff University
Cardiff University is recognised in independent government assessments as one of Britain’s leading teaching and research universities and is a member of the Russell Group of the UK’s most research intensive universities. Among its academic staff are two Nobel Laureates, including the winner of the 2007 Nobel Prize for Medicine, Professor Sir Martin Evans.
Founded by Royal Charter in 1883, today the University combines impressive modern facilities and a dynamic approach to teaching and research. The University’s breadth of expertise in research and research-led teaching encompasses: the humanities; the natural, physical, health, life and social sciences; engineering and technology; preparation for a wide range of professions; and a longstanding commitment to lifelong learning.
Visit the University website at:

2. For further information
Gethin Matthews
School of History, Archaeology and Religion
Cardiff University
Tel: 02920 876297