Respect for The Mabinogion set in stone | Letters

Fiona Collins finds reverence for Blodeuwedd’s story alive and well among ordinary people in Gwynedd

Jim Perrin proves he is in the zeitgeist by devoting his column (Country diary, 12 May) to a speed retelling of the fourth branch of The Mabinogion, for he has published it smack between a Radio 4 In Our Time programme on the Mabinogion and Wales’ forthcoming storytelling festival, Beyond the Border, which this year features retellings by some of Wales’s best storytellers of all four branches over one weekend, a feat only ever attempted, to my knowledge, once before (at least in living memory).

I would like to reassure Jim Perrin about the change that has taken place at Bryn Saeth, the site of Llech Ronw. Although he laments that the eponymous stone has “been set upright, concreted into a plinth”, he is wrong about it being surrounded by wire, and his heart might be lighter had he had the same conversation that I had with the farmer in whose field the stone once lay, and now stands. He told me he did this at his own expense, and surrounded it with a little wooden fence out of respect for the story, and to protect the stone from his sheep. Neither the Welsh assembly nor Cadw, our national heritage organisation, were interested in giving him a grant to do so, he told me. It was heartening to learn that the landscape and its natural features are still alive with Blodeuwedd’s story to ordinary people in Gwynedd. Paid a becso, Jim bach (don’t fret)!
Fiona Collins
Carrog, Denbighshire 

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