May I begin by saying how, as a Welsh speaker (albeit a vernacular one) I was delighted by Rhiannon Lucy Cosslett’s article (How Welsh became cool, G2, 13 June). The roots of the revival coincided with the popularity of Welsh bands in the era known as Cŵl Cymru (cool Wales). At the time (the 1990s/2000s) my late wife and I were living in Lesotho and I started my collection of Welsh band CDs in music stores across the border in Bloemfontein. It included those by Catatonia whose lead singer Cerys Matthews attended the same school as I did in Fishguard, but long after me I hasten to add.
The revival was also helped by the introduction of Welsh medium schools in Wales: a complete reversal of the corporal punishment handed out to schoolchildren caught speaking Welsh in school in the time when my maternal grandmother grew up. Her great grandchildren have been the beneficiaries of the teaching revival. One is now a doctor and the other is about to graduate; how much more cool than that can you get?
That said, unlike the Scottish, Irish and northern English newscasters, it is impossible to identify many of their Welsh counterparts as being Welsh by the manner in which they speak English: is it because of a continuing inferiority complex? To end with Cerys: there is no mistaking she is Welsh when addressing the public in English.
• Now that speaking Welsh has featured on both the front page and centre spread of G2, can I send in my letters in Welsh/Gâi anfon fy llythyrau yn Gymraeg? Or bilingually/Neu yn ddwyieithog?). Mind you, I’m with Rhiannon Lucy Cosslett’s dad (“You might as well ask a fish if the water it swims in is cool.”). Just because it wasn’t mentioned in the Guardian before, didn’t mean that there weren’t lots of us reclaiming our linguistic heritage. And even more of us living in the medium of Welsh. Thanks for bigging us up, though. It’s always nice to be appreciated. Cofion gorau.
Carrog, Sir Ddinbych
• And Welsh is very useful for passwords. Diolch yn fawr am yr erthygl yma . Dyna cŵl iawn, yn wir!
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