News | Newyddion

Posted Monday, May 13th, 2019


Mae Clybiau Gwanwyn yn chwilio am artistiaid yn ardal Casnewydd i ddarparu gweithdai creadigol sy’n gwthio ffiniau ymdrechion artistig a chynnau/ailgynnau dawn ymhlith yr henoed i geisio gwneud gwaith sy’n ergydiol, mentrus, anfoesgar, dadleuol – nid diogel, dibynadwy, blinedig a phrofedig.

Bydd Clybiau Gwanwyn yn cael eu cynnal bob dydd Mercher yng Nglan yr Afon Casnewydd, o Fehefin tan Hydref 2019. Mae hwn yn GYFLE Â THÂL. I gofrestru’ch diddordeb fel artist i’r sesiynau hyn, anfonwch CV at Nia Thomas – Cydlynydd Clybiau Gwanwyn Casnewydd neu ffoniwch 07747 027623 am ragor o wybodaeth.

Y dyddiad cau yw diwedd y dydd, dydd Mercher 22 Mai.


Mae Clybiau Gwanwyn yn gydweithrediad rhwng Age Cymru, Age Cymru Gwent ac Ymddiriedolaeth Byw Casnewydd. Ariennir y prosiect gan Gyngor Celfyddydau Cymru.



Gwanwyn Clubs are looking for artists in the Newport area to deliver creative workshops that push the boundaries of artistic endeavour and re/ignite creative flair amongst older people, to try work that is punchy, risky, rude, controversial – not safe, tried, tired and tested.

Gwanwyn Clubs will run every Wednesday at the Riverfront in Newport, from June until October 2019. This is a PAID OPPORTUNITY. To register your interest as an artist for these sessions, please send a CV to Nia Thomas – Gwanwyn Clubs Coordinator for Newport or give her a ring on 07747 027623 for more information.

Deadline is close of play on Wednesday 22 May.


Gwanwyn Clubs are a collaboration between Age Cymru, Age Cymru Gwent and Newport Live Trust. The project is funded by Arts Council of Wales.

Posted Thursday, April 25th, 2019

AC Gwanwyn flyer WEST final

AC Gwanwyn flyer SOUTH final

AC Gwanwyn flyer NORTH final


Posted Wednesday, April 17th, 2019


From Caernafon to Cardiff and from Whitland to Wrexham there will be an explosion of art and creativity amongst the over 50s in Wales during the merry month of May


More than 40 groups of older people throughout Wales are set to take part in this year’s Gwanwyn Festival of arts and creativity for older people.


The Wales wide festival, organised by Age Cymru, will this year feature activities ranging from challenging dance routines to film screenings, and from community weaving to an exhibition on memory, and everything in between during the month of May.

Now in its thirteenth year, the festival provides opportunities for older people to become involved in any number of artistic and creative activities. It also celebrates the opportunities that older age can bring about; a chance to learn and try new creative experiences, which is reflected in the name Gwanwyn – the Welsh word for springtime, whilst acknowledging lived experience.

Among the highlights of this year’s festival will be an exhibition from the Hearth Gallery at Llandough Hospital in the Vale of Glamorgan based on patients’ first memories. In Caerphilly older women will be making a short film of their dance routines called Girls on Film, while in Cardiff the Gentle/Radical Film club will be screening a film and hosting a discussion based upon the institution of marriage from a BAME perspective.

In Denbighshire, an inspirational artist will help a community to weave itself together by using this most ancient of crafts while in Carmarthenshire there will be aerial yoga as participants will be lifted circus-style into the air to perform their moves before being invited to lay in a colourful yoga hammock for a more calming experience.

Age Cymru’s Arts & Creativity Programmes Manager, Kelly Barr said:  “The Festival is produced by inviting community groups to bid for small grants to help fund their event, so that we can ensure that a wide cross-section of older people, from the four corners of Wales, become involved in organising and participating in the festival.

“It also promotes the benefits of exploring creativity, developing a critical voice and participating fully in the artistic and cultural life of local communities across Wales, all of which is crucial to our well-being.

“Given the calibre of events, I suspect that this year’s festival is going to be one of our most successful to date with each group offering a unique and exciting opportunity to get involved.”

Posted Wednesday, April 25th, 2018

Get ready for an explosion of creativity in older age with the Gwanwyn Festival this May


Throughout the month of May expect an explosion of colour, sound and excitement across the whole of Wales as hundreds of people aged 50 plus perform and deliver an extraordinarily wide range of creative activities as part of the annual Gwanwyn Festival.


Organised by Age Cymru, the Festival encourages older people to take part in visual arts, drama, storytelling, music, literature, photography dance or film.  And this year the range of activities and performances is quite possibly our most diverse, exciting and innovative since the Festival was established in 2007. In all there are 45 organisations taking part, delivering 100s of events and activities across Wales.


There will be literary boat trips around Anglesey with musicians and poets performing sea shanties and poems about our maritime traditions, including smuggling!; stand-up comedy workshops and performances in both Ystradgynlais and Abergavenny; a celebration of pixel stick photography in Llandudno; contemporary music featuring a fiddle and beatbox at Newydd Housing Association schemes across South Wales; and a circus skills workshop in Llanelli to name but a few!


Other performances include a collaboration between the Forget Me Not Chorus and the  Welsh writer Patrick Jones in Newport; an exploration of what beauty means to older people by Cardiff BME Community through the support of the Gentle/ Radical Cardiff group; a bus tour through the centre of Cardiff by the Get the Chance group who will be asking people whether ageing is an art form; a session by Pontypridd based harpist Bethan Nia who will use  local stories and myths as a source of inspiration for a new piece of music.

Please head to our Events page for details of events in your area.

Posted Tuesday, June 6th, 2017

A big thank you to everyone who took part in Gwanwyn 2017! We’ve had an amazing festival this year, packed with film making, story telling, puppets, donkeys and much, much more.

There’s so much hard work that goes into Gwanwyn from all our organisers, artists, performers, as well as all the staff in venues up and down Wales, and most of all, our audiences. So thanks everyone!

Gwanwyn isn’t just for spring though. We’re currently working on ways of extending the reach of the festival beyond May, and will have more details of that soon. Watch this space for more information, or follow us on Twitter and Facebook to be kept updated.

In the meantime, there’s still time to catch work from our cARTrefu project of arts in care homes, Voices from the Edge: Murmurations at Craft in the Bay in Cardiff, which is on until Wednesday 19 July.

Posted Tuesday, May 9th, 2017

May’s edition of our bulletin is all about storytelling.

Inside we’ve got Liz Ashworth on creative writing workshops in Conwy, Valmai Jones on Parama2’s scriptwriting workshops in Cardiff Bay, and Rachel Pedley-Miller on documentary film making and hip hop dance in the Valleys.

We’ve also got a round up on all the latest news from our first ever Arts and Older People Conference and details of how we’ll be making it Gwanwyn all year long with new Gwanwyn Clubs in Aberystwyth and Caernarfon.

Download it here:

Gwanwyn 2017 May bulletin ENGLISH

Gwanwyn 2017 May bulletin CYMRAEG

Posted Tuesday, April 25th, 2017

Following on from our Art and Older People Conference in Cardiff a few weeks ago, David Cutler of the Baring Foundation has written a blog celebrating all the incredible work going on in Wales.

Photographer Michal Iwanowski mobilised people via social media to find this war-time grave for one elderly resident as part of cARTrefu’s carehome artist in residence project

‘I have been asking myself this question after participating in the excellent conference at the stunningly beautiful new Royal College of Music and Drama in Cardiff on 6th April. The conference was organised by the Arts Council Wales and Age Cymru with financial support from the Baring Foundation.

‘It culminated with a strong endorsement from Ken Skates, the Cabinet Secretary for Economy and Infrastructure. The day showcased arts activity from the length and breadth of the country, but clearly showed that practitioners did not want to rest on their laurels but see how this could be improved.

‘Wales has many treasures when it comes to arts and older people. Central to this is Gwanwyn, the month long creative ageing festival in May. Gwanwyn means ‘Spring’ in Welsh and renews the landscape each year. Run by Age Cymru since 2006 it reaches over 11,000 people in around 500 events. Gwanwyn gives grants to pump prime activity. It continually develops with local Gwanwyn year-round clubs as its latest manifestation.’

Read David’s full blog post here

Posted Tuesday, April 4th, 2017

We’re looking for innovative artists in any art form who have a desire to create bold and original work with older people in residential care.

This project is not about maintaining the norm. We want fresh, new thinkers who will really challenge
and develop this area of work. We welcome work that is punchy, risky, rude, controversial – not safe, tried, tired and tested.

You will need to have experience of facilitating workshops using your art form, however experience of working with older people isn’t essential, as the programme is designed to support practitioners to develop their skills in this area. Those with some experience of working with older people are still encouraged to apply if they are keen to develop their skills further whilst working alongside an expert mentor.

Find out more:

cARTrefu Artist Tender

cARTrefu Artist Tender WELSH

Posted Tuesday, March 28th, 2017

There’s still time to enter the Poetry Competition. As a result of recent IT problems the closing date for the poetry competition is now 30 April

Find out more

Win a free course at Tŷ Newydd Writing Centre with Disability Arts Cymru and Tŷ Newydd poetry competition as part of a Wales-wide festival for over 50s

Disability Arts Cymru and Tŷ Newydd are offering the opportunity for a writer in Wales to win a free course at Tŷ Newydd as part of the 2017 Gwanwyn Arts Festival for over 50s.

Says Denni Turp, North West Wales Field Officer for Disability Arts Cymru, on behalf of this exciting project: ‘We’re very grateful to the Gwanwyn Arts Festival for this award towards the costs. It has helped both organisations to be able to offer this fantastic opportunity for an unpublished writer over 50 in Wales to attend one of the wonderful writing courses at Tŷ Newydd.’

Posted Tuesday, March 21st, 2017

Age Cymru is seeking three Artist Mentors for the next phase of cARTrefu (2017 – 19).

We’re looking for established and inspiring artists in any art form who have experience of working with older people in a care home environment, as well as care home professionals.

Your role as cARTrefu Artist Mentor will be to provide expert support, inspiration and mentoring to
four freelance artists who will be developing their own artistic practice whilst undertaking five 12 – week residencies in care homes around Wales over a two – year period.

At the end of each residency our Artist Mentors will then work directly with nominated care home staff, offering support and guidance to enable them to run their own creative session with residents at the end of each residency.

The total value of this tender is £12,000. Project expenses such as travel and materials will be paid separately by Age Cymru.

The deadline for bids is April 7th 2017 at 12:00pm.

cARTrefu Mentor Tender

cARTrefu Mentor Tender WELSH

Posted Friday, March 10th, 2017

Win a free course at Tŷ Newydd Writing Centre with Disability Arts Cymru and Tŷ Newydd poetry competition as part of a Wales-wide festival for over 50s

Disability Arts Cymru and Tŷ Newydd are offering the opportunity for a writer in Wales to win a free course at Tŷ Newydd as part of the 2017 Gwanwyn Arts Festival for over 50s.

Says Denni Turp, North West Wales Field Officer for Disability Arts Cymru, on behalf of this exciting project: “We’re very grateful to the Gwanwyn Arts Festival for this award towards the costs. It has helped both organisations to be able to offer this fantastic opportunity for an unpublished writer over 50 in Wales to attend one of the wonderful writing courses at Tŷ Newydd.”

Closing date for entries is 31 March. Find out more.

Posted Tuesday, January 31st, 2017

Location: Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, Castle Grounds, Cathays Park, Cardiff CF10 3ER


Come and learn about the role of the arts in creating age friendly communities and the contribution of creative activity in supporting older people to live well and enjoy later life

Further details will be issued shortly, but for now, please save the date!

Organised by Age Cymru and Arts Council of Wales with support from the Baring Foundation.

More info

Posted Tuesday, January 31st, 2017

Would you like to develop skills in organising creative events that will welcome new members to your group?


If you’re planning to organise an event as part of Gwanwyn, or any other Get Creative or Voluntary Arts Festival, or simply want to welcome more members to your group, join Voluntary Arts Wales at one of their forthcoming training days.

This free course will provide you with practical guidance about organising events which are inclusive and engaging and is aimed at people in arts and groups who have a responsibility or interest in organising events, public taster sessions, workshops or performances.

For more information visit Voluntary Arts website.

Posted Tuesday, January 31st, 2017


Snowdogs Tales in Wales is a unique opportunity for artists to use their creative skills to do something amazing to raise money for Tŷ Hafan to continue to support children and young people with life-limiting conditions and their families.


Standing at 1.5m tall, these large fibreglass sculptures provide a 3D blank canvas for you to unleash your creativity. Once they’ve been decorated, each Snowdog will be fixed onto a concrete plinth and transported to their temporary home at a point along the trail for all to enjoy.

By making your own individual contribution to Snowdogs: Tails in Wales, your work will be showcased to a mass audience and will enable you to connect with other artists, businesses and the wider Cardiff community.

More information:

Posted Friday, December 16th, 2016

Give the Gift of Creativity and Company this Christmas It won’t cost you a penny! The Cheerful Project are looking for over 50’s to take part in our exciting project, Oed y Byd.

‘We can offer opportunities for older people, who find it difficult to get out and about, to do something creative in their own homes. Initially we’d like to arrange a meeting with the participant to chat about the kinds of activities they might like to explore and we can then tailor any future sessions to their needs and any physical limitations they might have.

‘Would you or someone you know benefit from this project?
Would you like to accompany a friend or family member during these creative sessions? We hope they would have a friend, family member or carer with them who could also participate or just be present, to engender the relaxed and informal atmosphere we’re looking for.

‘This project has so much to offer, by referring someone to this project you could make a real difference to someone this Christmas.

‘As well as the individual sessions there will also be a celebration event at the end of the project similar in feel to the Narberth Tea Dance we held in November. Everyone involved will get the opportunity to get together and celebrate all of their achievements.

‘Please contact ( or phone on 01834 869323 for further information .

‘Participants may find it difficult to leave their homes due to one or more of these factors:
* Mobility issues
* Dementia
* Loss of hearing/sight,
* Isolation due to having no family members living nearby
* Mental/emotional health issues,
* Physical health issues,
* No access to transport,
* Being a carer for someone else in the home.

‘Please contact ( or phone on 01834 869323 for further information.’

Posted Friday, December 16th, 2016


We’ve got our Christmas jumpers on ready to say a big thank you to everyone who helped us celebrate our tenth birthday this year. We’ll be back on 3rd January 2017.

Merry Christmas and a happy new year to you all!

Posted Friday, October 28th, 2016

This time around the Gwanwyn Bulletin focuses on the community grant scheme – what it is and how to get on it.

Applications for grants for next year’s festival are currently open. If you’re thinking of applying, we hope you’ll find a bit of inspiration here! We’ve got loads of information to help you with your application.


In this issue, Mike Stevens talks about how the community grant scheme has helped the Suitcase Theatre, and Linda Jane James and Dewi Morris talk about last May’s Gabions of Curiosity Project. We’ve also got Kelly Barr from the National Dance Company of Wales telling us about the first ever Gwanwyn Dance Night.

Download the November Bulletin in English and Welsh:

November 2016 Bulletin – English

November 2016 Gwanwyn Bulletin – Cymraeg

The deadline for applications to the community grant scheme is Wednesday 7 December 2016.

Posted Friday, October 14th, 2016
Posted Friday, October 7th, 2016

Calling all Over 60’s – Keep Fit and Flexible with Rubicon Dance

Photography by Sian Trenberth

Photography by Sian Trenberth

After a recent successful taster session initiated by Julie Morgan, Rubicon will be running weekly dance sessions for over 60’s. Come along and enjoy gentle exercise to music. All over 60’s Welcome!

Where? Whitchurch Community Centre (Old Church Road)
When? Every Monday from 2.30-3.30pm (term time)
Cost? £3.50 per session

Contact: Sharon Teear Tel: 07868258605 / 02920491477 INFO@RUBICONDANCE.CO.UK / WWW.RUBICONDANCE.CO.UK

Posted Friday, September 30th, 2016

Applications for next year’s Community Grant Scheme are now open. Grants of up to £500 are available to fund events to take place as part of Gwanwyn Festival in May 2017.

_mg_8777Image created by participants in Venue Cymru’s Pixelsticking workshop

Community Grant Scheme projects can include any kind of creative activity. From yarn bombs to watercolours, and photography workshops to stand-up comedy, we are interested in supporting any project that offers an opportunity for older people to participate in the arts.

Projects could promote the health and wellbeing benefits of taking part in creative activity, or challenge stereotypes or preconceived ideas of aging.

_39a0608Suitcase Theatre present Shakespeare 400 during Gwanwyn 2016

We encourage applications from as many different kinds of organisation as possible, from Wales’s biggest venues to community led groups. Come and be part of Wales’s nationwide celebration of art, creativity, and growth in older age!

If you need any advice or assistance with your application please get in touch with us.

Find out more.

The deadline for applications is Wednesday 7 December 2016.

Posted Friday, September 16th, 2016
Posted Friday, September 16th, 2016
Posted Friday, September 9th, 2016


It’s only a few weeks until the start of Age Cymru’s Age Positive Week. If you’re planning any events for older people between September 25 to October 2, then we would love to hear from you.

You can celebrate positive aging in any way you like, as long as it involves older people – coffee mornings, exercise sessions, trip to the theatre, anything. Follow the link to get involved and find out more about Age Positive Week.

Posted Friday, September 9th, 2016
Posted Friday, September 9th, 2016
Posted Friday, July 22nd, 2016

North Wales artist Elizabeth Ashworth has published a new book of poetry inspired by five local older people who all share a lifelong love of art.

Do Not go Gentle – Interviews and Poems on Creativity in Older Age

Do Not go Gentle – Interviews and Poems on Creativity in Older Age

Do Not Go Gentle – Interviews and Poems on Creativity in Older Age is a collection of works about Dymphna Darcey, Lloyd Jones, Beverley Bell-Hughes, John Wynne Morris and Elfyn Jones.

Elizabeth from Llanfairfechan interviewed all five for her book which contains profiles of each artist from their early childhood to older age.

She also wrote pieces of poetry based on their life stories in different forms including free verse and haiku.

Elizabeth Ashworth

Elizabeth Ashworth

‘For the project I interviewed a dancer, writer, two painters and a potter who are practising their individual disciplines more productively than ever”, says Elizabeth Ashworth.

‘They have all led interesting and incredibly varied lives, share this lifelong love of art and all continue to dance, write, paint and throw pots working well into their sixties and seventies.

‘And like the Dylan Thomas poem which inspired the title of the book, they have no intention at all of slowing down in their older age and going gently ‘into that good night’.’

The Gwanwyn arts festival for over 50s, run by Age Cymru, commissioned Elizabeth to produce the book as part of its tenth anniversary celebrations.

‘Gwanwyn is a celebration of creativity and arts among older people’, says Emma Robinson, who coordinates the Gwanwyn festival.

‘Every year, we run a Wales-wide arts festival for over 50s and we support older artists working in Wales by commissioning works of art from them.

‘This year, with Gwanwyn being 10 years old, we wanted to mark the occasion by offering the opportunity for Welsh artists to create new works of art to celebrate this important milestone.

‘I’m absolutely overjoyed with what Elizabeth has produced and it has been a joy to work with such a talented individual on this thought-provoking project.’

Elizabeth Ashworth will be distributing copies of Do Not Go Gentle – Interviews and Poems on Creativity in Older Age to older people’s groups, libraries and arts centres.

Copies are also going to Age Cymru Gwynedd a Môn Ageing Well centres and writing clubs across north Wales.

Posted Friday, June 3rd, 2016

Gwanwyn Dance Night at Dance House May 21

As we wrap up this year’s Gwanwyn we would like to take a moment to say a monumental thank you to everyone who has helped make this year’s festival the biggest and best ever.


Big thanks to all the artists, musicians, dancers, poets, photographers, writers, actors, sculptors, knitters, free-runners, story-tellers, jugglers, stilt-walkers, drummers, saxophonists, ukelele-fiends, ravers, walkers, silk painters, gangster grandparents, puppeteers, quilters, paint-pals, yoga instructors, book binders, yarn-bombers (shhh!), soloists, ensembles, usherettes and projectionists. Thanks everyone! We hope you had a great experience.


Another big thank you to our fabulous army of organizers and volunteers, and to all the amazing people who work with us in venues, who throw open their theatres, galleries, arts centres, church halls and care homes to us each May. For everything you’ve done to make this the most magical Gwawnyn Festival so far – thanks!

thanks 3

Most of all we would like to thank our audiences. We really hope you enjoyed the show. Thanks for coming and we hope we’ll see you all again next year.

There’s still a few projects ongoing – Sharing Stories continues at Hay on Wye Library, Gangster Grandparents has a final couple of sessions to run at Breaking Barriers, and Re-Live Theatre’s play Belonging ends its triumphant national tour with performances at Theatr Brycheiniog, Brecon on 8 June.

We’ll be back soon with more news of our series of artist commissions. Meanwhile, thanks again and have an amazing summer!

Posted Tuesday, May 24th, 2016

We’re entering the last week of May and we’ve had an amazing journey so far, but our 10th birthday party is far from over.

Llion Williams and Clêr Stephens in Re-Live Theatre's Belonging

Llion Williams and Clêr Stephens in Re-Live Theatre’s Belonging

Karin Diamond’s play Belonging continues its triumphant national tour with performances in Neuadd Dwyfor, Pwllhelli (May 24), Pontio, Bangor (May 26-27), Neuadd Ucheldre, Holyhead (May 31), Galeri, Caernarfon (Jun 2) and Theatr Brycheiniog, Brecon (Jun 8).

Karin Diamond and Francine Morgan in Re-Live Theatre's Belonging

Karin Diamond and Francine Morgan in Re-Live Theatre’s Belonging

The play is funny and moving and tells the story of how two very different families survive a diagnosis of dementia. You can see the trailer for Re-Live Theatre’s Belonging here and watch an excerpt from the play here.

Critics are calling it ‘beautiful, both in the delicacy with which it tackles the subject and the strength of the performances‘ and ‘a damned good piece of theatre‘.

Wednesday May 25 sees Gwanwyn come to Theatr Felinfach in Ceredigion where Merched Mentrus (Venturous Women) will take to the road for one day only, entertaining audiences in unexpected locations. Presented by a group of older women, the short play is an affirmation that venturing is exciting at any age.

lowri morgan

Lowri Morgan

Join the final performance of the day at Theatr Felinfach, Lampeter. Hwyl a Hamdden, a social and cultural group for over 50s will be welcoming special guest and famous adventurer, Lowri Morgan, for a special Gwanwyn 10th birthday celebration.

The day is FREE but please book your place as space is limited, please call Theatr Felinfach Box Office on 01570 470 697 or or go to or Twitter @Theatrfelinfach.

Joao Bento workshop exhibition

Walking the Dog at Newport Riverfront

Are you into photography workshops or exhibitions? From Gangster Grandparents to Cyanotypes, Gwanwyn puts everyone in the picture. Please take a look at our Gwanwyn events page for full listings of all the concerts, exhibitions and workshops still to come.

Posted Monday, May 23rd, 2016
Posted Friday, May 13th, 2016
Gwanwyn Dance night at Dance House May 21

Gwanwyn Dance night at Dance House May 21

Gwanwyn’s 10th birthday celebrations continue this week with Aging Creatively at Theatr Brycheiniog on Tuesday May 17. There will be craft workshops and a visit from Men’s Sheds Cymru, plus a special screening of The Lady in the Van featuring an acclaimed performance from Maggie Smith.

May 19 – 20 finds Arts Care Gofal Celf at the Torch Theatre for a day of workshops, taster sessions and a chance to catch Re-Live Theatre’s brilliant new play Belonging.

Llion Williams and Clêr Stephens in Belonging

Llion Williams and Clêr Stephens in Re-Live Theatre’s Belonging

Belonging follows the fortunes of two families living with dementia and has opened to rave reviews in Cardiff last week. It will also be at the Lyric Theatre Carmarthen (May 17), before continuing its national tour. Critics are calling it ‘beautiful, both in the delicacy with which it tackles the subject and the strength of the performances‘ and ‘a damned good piece of theatre‘.

Gwanwyn Dance Night at Dance House May 21

Gwanwyn Dance Night at Dance House May 21

Saturday sees one of the events we’re most proud of – our first ever Gwanwyn Dance Night at Dance House in Cardiff. We’ve been working with older people’s dance groups for several years now and this special performance brings together long term Gwanwyn collaborators Rubicon Dance, Striking Attitudes and TAN Dance with the National Dance Company of Wales for an evening celebrating the passion and variety of older peoples’ dance in Wales.

Only Men Aloud

Only Men Aloud

We’re delighted to have Only Men Aloud perform a special matinee at the Coliseum in Aberdare on May 22. They’ll be bringing their powerful harmonies to a unique mix of styles, from pop to classical. Expect the unexpected: anything from show tunes to Welsh hymns! We spoke to Craig from Only Men Aloud last week and you can read his interview here (link).

Mountain Dulcimers at the Squirrels Nest

Mountain Dulcimers at the Squirrels Nest

Finally, there’s a very different kind of musical celebration going on at Squirrels Nest Men’s Shed in Bridgend on May 20. Following on from their Epic Award winning Pimp My Uke project they will be holding an open day to show off their latest enthusiasm, the Appalachian mountain dulcimer. There will be plenty of music, plus food and refreshments and the chance to find out how get involved.

Whether you’re into Shakespeare or crochet, bookbinding or African drumming, Gwanwyn offers something for everyone. Please take a look at our Gwanwyn events page for full listings of all the concerts, exhibitions and workshops still to come.

Posted Friday, May 13th, 2016


Brit Award winners Only Men Aloud are joining Gwanwyn this year with a special matinee performance at Aberdare Coliseum on May 22. We caught up with the group’s baritone, Craig Yates, to find out his thoughts on aging creatively.

G: Why is it important to Only Men Aloud to be involved with Gwanwyn Festival?
CY: We are delighted to be performing at this year’s Gwanwyn Festival to help celebrate the 10th anniversary of the festival. Bringing live music and a live show into the heart of people’s communities is very important to us. We often hear that some people don’t like travelling far, and don’t like coming to see us in the evening, so our 5pm start should be perfect. The Festival does incredible things in celebrating the creativity in older age, and we are proud to have been asked to be part of it.


G: What do you have planned for us?
CY: We have a typical Only Men Aloud concert planned for you. If you have not seen us before, this means a wide mix of styles and genres, all sung with our unique harmonies and strong voices. We will have hopefully something for everyone from Welsh hymns to classical music, to music theatre to popular music.

G: Gwanwyn is about celebrating creativity in older age. What do you think is the best way to stay creative as you get older?
CY: I think the best way to stay creative as you get older, is to keep doing what you love and enjoy, and keep giving yourself new experiences. Music is always a huge part of everyone’s life, and can be a great way to keep being creative. Come along and see us in Aberdare, and you’ll be singing along, tapping your feet, and even dancing in the aisles!


G: We’re celebrating our tenth birthday this year, what are your ambitions for Only Men Aloud for the next ten years?
CY: We’d love to keep doing what we are doing, and keep getting better and better. We always have great ambitions of touring around the world, and showing the world the music Wales has to offer – so we hope we can do just that. As long as we are happy, healthy, and still enjoying what we are doing – that will do for me.

Only Men Aloud will be at the Coliseum Theatre Aberdare on May 22.

Posted Thursday, May 5th, 2016

2016 May Bulletin FINAL

Gwanwyn Festival’s May bulletin is packed with news and interviews from our 10th birthday celebrations.

2016 May Bulletin Cymraeg

2016 May Bulletin English


– Gwanwyn veteran Dee Rivas tells us the secrets of what makes a great Gwanwyn event

– Rubicon Dance’s Kathryn Williams discusses our first ever Gwanwyn Dance Night on May 21 at Dance House in Cardiff

Emma van Woerkom shares details of her Sharing Stories project into literature and dementia taking place at Hay On Wye library

– We talk to Robert Visintainer of Men’s Sheds Cymru about winning a Voluntary Arts Epic Award for their Pimp My Uke project

– Go behind the scenes of Gwanwyn with Festival Coordinator Emma Robinson.

If there’s anything you would like to see us cover next time please contact us: / 029 2043 1555

Posted Friday, April 22nd, 2016

Gwanwyn is marking its 10th birthday by commissioning six Welsh artists to produce one-off works of art inspired by the quote ‘It’s good to look back, but it’s rude to stare’.

Two of the artists – Delyth Jenkins and Prue Thimbleby are from Swansea – While Deborah Winter is from West Wales

Prue Thimbleby

Prue Thimbleby

Delyth and Deborah’s work will combine storytelling and music and explore the relationship between wisdom and insight of age and the creative process.

Prue’s will be an interactive mixture of autobiographic and traditional storytelling and rope making.

Pauline Down

Pauline Down

Pauline Down is from Cardiff and her work will be a vocal performance piece for 12 singers based on the thoughts of people who live in care homes.

Elizabeth Ashworth lives in Llanfairfechan and her work is a booklet of poetry and prose inspired by her experiences and those of other creative older people.

Llangadog-based Elizabeth Brickell is going to produce an art installation of cups and saucers of different sizes. It has been inspired by one of Elizabeth’s former students – an 83-year-old woman called Violet from Neath who liked to drink tea.

Says Emma Robinson, Age Cymru’s Gwanwyn festival coordinator:
“The Gwanwyn festival is celebrating its tenth birthday this year and we wanted to celebrate this special occasion by offering the opportunity for Welsh artists to create a piece of art to mark this important milestone in the festival’s history.
“I’m absolutely overjoyed to be able to work with such a talented group of people to produce such an exciting and diverse range of groundbreaking and thought-provoking projects.”

For all media enquiries, please contact Iwan Rhys Roberts, External Relations Manager – Age Cymru on 029 2043 1562, 07739 894 923,

Posted Friday, April 22nd, 2016

Bealtaine logo with tagline

Ireland’s national celebration of creativity as we age, Bealtaine Festival, which also takes place in May, is celebrating an unbelievable 21 years of fantastic work this year.

We don’t mind admitting that Gwanwyn has drawn a lot of inspiration from Bealtaine and we would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone involved with the festival a very happy 21st birthday celebration. Have an amazing Bealtaine 2016 everyone!

Bealtaine 2016 programme

For more information, here’s a link to their website.

Posted Monday, April 4th, 2016

We’re thrilled and humbled to share the news that Men’s Sheds Cymru and Gwanwyn Festival won an Epic Award at Cardiff Castle on Saturday night for the project Pimp My Uke. There were so many great projects on the shortlist that we still can’t really take it in.

Welsh Epic Award Winners 2016

Welsh Epic Award Winners 2016

Gwanwyn Festival Coordinator Emma Robinson had this to say:

‘We’re delighted to share this award with our friends at Men’s Sheds Cymru, we’re so chuffed to have won. It was an inspirational evening and a real joy to share and meet with the other projects from across the UK and the Republic of Ireland. The Shedders are now taking the brave step from ukuleles to Appalachian Mountain Dulcimers (naturally!) and we’re working on a Men’s Shed version of an Eisteddofod for later this year. So watch this space!’

pimp my uke

To find out more about Men’s Sheds Cymru, or to make contact with a Men’s Sheds project near you please visit their website.

More on Pimp My Uke
on YouTube. Crank up the volume for this one!

More information about the 2016 Epic Awards including a list of winners

Finally we want to congratulate all the other nominee and winners of the 2016 Epic Awards, particularly our fellow Welsh winners, Strike a Chord and Black History Month Wales. Well done everyone! Stay in touch!

Posted Thursday, March 31st, 2016

Portrait Artist of the Year 2016 Flyer

Landscape Artist of the Year 2016 Flyer

Opportunity to win a £10,000 commission for the National Trust art collection and £500 or art materials from Cass Art.

Enter at

Posted Thursday, March 31st, 2016
Posted Saturday, March 12th, 2016

Age Cymru’s Gwanwyn Festival is celebrating its’ tenth birthday this year and we would like to celebrate this special occasion by offering the opportunity for Welsh artists (or artists based in Wales) to submit proposals to develop and create their own artistic work to be presented during Gwanwyn’s birthday year.

Gwanwyn 2016 Commissions

Posted Thursday, March 10th, 2016

2016 Feb Newsletter amends

The Gwanwyn newsletter includes highlights from last year’s festival, features on Gwanwyn projects, interviews with our organisers and pictures and inspiration from the world of Gwanwyn.

Available in English and Welsh on the links below.

2016 March Newsletter CYMRAEG web

2016 March Newsletter ENG web

Posted Friday, February 26th, 2016