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When Gary Samuel, the then Cardiff Rugby Club Coach and teacher at Heol Y Celyn Primary School where I also worked suggested that I prepared a folk dancing group of teachers for a school concert little did I think then what I was letting myself in for and what a can of worms I was opening. It was, however, the birth of Dawnswyr Nantgarw, which has been the source of so much pleasure for myself and thousands of others who have enjoyed our dancing during the past twenty-five years. Neither did I realise at the time what lay beneath the seemingly pretty and quaint surface of folk dancing and didn't forsee the knowledge I was to gain, the countries I was to visit and the new friends I was to make. While considering this letter for the programme another stronger feeling possesses me. - an inexplicable feeling of belonging and contact with my ancient forefathers. Each time I dance the courtly Meillionen  or watch the men dancing the ritual Cadi Ha' I feel that I am possessed by the spirits of the past. Going to a rehearsal or concert or competition is like being at a séance making contact with the spirits of the earth, those same spirits that ruled our primitive ancestors lives.
The purpose of our formation was to revive the folk traditions of the Taf Valley and Glamorgan and perform them at the highest standard possible. It hasn't been easy!  - but I have attempted to maintain a professional attitude to each and every performance. We have seen a regular turnover of members over the years but have always succeeded in attracting members who remain true, not only the tradition, but to each other. Nantgarw  is one big happy family - to be one of them is an honour.




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Eirlys Britton

10 Thompson Avenue
Parc Buddug • Caerdydd

02920 565118