Five key things you need to know about – St Dwynwen – the patron saint of lovers

Valentine’s Day is celebrated all around the world, but here in Wales we celebrate love on the 25th January with our very own patron saint of lovers –  St Dwynwen.

But, how did this 5th century princess become a symbol of love and hope for so many? Why have so many young lovers pilgrimaged to west Wales to seek answers? Why is a well so important? Look below for the top five things you need to know about one of Wales’ most popular saints!

  1. Her story wasn’t actually that romantic… in fact it was kind of the opposite. According to the legend, despite being considered one of the most beautiful of Brychan Brycheiniog’s twenty four daughters, Dwynwen was unlucky in love. She fell for a prince called Maelon Dafodrill but that the love ended badly. Some versions suggest that the prince left her because she rejected his premarital sexual advances. However, most argue that Dwywnen’s father, Brychan Brycheiniog, was determined that she would marry someone else. Either way, young Dwynwen was left devastated
  2. There was a potion… In an attempt to find comfort, Dwynwen prayed to God and asked him to help her forget her love. An angel then visited Dwynwen (whilst she was asleep) and gave her a potion  that was supposed to take away Dwynwen’s memory of Maelon (a little like the beautiful Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind) and turned him into a block of ice.
  3. The three wishes. Loving Maelon, Dwynwen only sought to forget him (not for him to be frozen) so when God gave her three wishes, her first was to thaw her Maelon and save him. Her second wish (despite her own pain and sorrow) was to ask God to meet the hopes and dreams of true lovers. Her final wish was simply to never marry. She had loved once and would love no more.
  4. Devotion. After her final wish, the legend says that the beautiful Princess Dwynen went on to devote her life to God as a mark of gratitude. She travelled around Wales with her sister Cain and brother Dyfnan, preaching Christianity and helping those who had suffered pain through love. She then went on to establish a convent on Llanddwyn (meaning ‘The church of St. Dwynwen’), off the west coast of Anglesey.
  5. Well. A well in Llanddwyn was named after St Dwynen and became a place of pilgrimage after her death in 465AD. Lovers would visit (especially if they had  troubles in love) and pray to Dwynwen. They would visit the holy well and follow the movement of the sacred fish or eels that lived there, to find out if their relationship would be one of love and happiness or one ruined by unfaithfulness.

So, although Dwynwen’s own life in love may not have been a happy one, her selfless wish for love for others is why she deserves to be our partron saint of love.

Happy Dwynwen’s Day!!

Dydd Santes Dwynwen Hapus!!


Information taken from Historic UK, Visit Wales and Santes Cariadon Cymru, by Siân Lewis .

 

The Big Phill Half Term Guide – February 2019

This February half term there are lots of fun events going on around the Caerphilly County Borough. Whether you’re looking for theatre, sporty or arts and craft fun, please look below for something to sort your little ones.

Harry Potter Day with Little Miners Holiday Club at Nant Y Parc School

Free events at libraries around CCBC

 

Football Camp at Leisure Centres around CCBC

Gymnastics Half Term Camp With Bedwas Gymnastics Club

The Selfish Giant at Blackwood Miners’ Institute

February Half Term Fun at Tredegar House

Fruity Bird Feeders at Cwmcarn Forest Drive

Nerf Wars at Bedwellty House and Park

 

Half Term Hockey Camp at Leisure Centres in CCBC

 

Arts and Crafts Day with Little Miners Holiday Club at Nant Y Parc Primary School

LOL Pamper Time with Belles and Bows

 

Little Chefs Day with Little Miners Holiday Club

Pamper Party with Little Miners Holiday Club

Disney and Superhero Day with the Little Miners Holiday Club

Children’s Film Matinee – Incredibles 2 at Bedwas Workmen’s Hall

Christmas and New Year Guide to Caerphilly County Borough in 2018

There are so many fantastic things happening in Caerphilly this Christmas and New Year. Please take a look at our guides below to help you enjoy the festivities in this beautiful county. We will update them regularly so keep posted!

Christmas 2018 in the Caerphilly County Borough

New Year’s Eve 2018 in Caerphilly County Borough

Booked your Christmas do yet? Then, why not follow 1st Choice Caerphilly Taxi and fine out more about how you can enjoy 20% off Christmas and New Year’s rates. this festive season!

 

 

Christmas 2018 in the Caerphilly County Borough

There are so many wonderful events happening this Christmas. Please look here to find out all the wonderful events going on. From ice skating and reindeer making to festive markets and Santa races, there really is something for everyone in Caerphilly this Christmas!

Ice Skating at Caerphilly Castle – Christmas 2018

Christmas Tree Festival and Carol Concert at St Martin’s Church

 

Cinderella at Blackwood Little Theatre

 

Hansel and Gretel – Llanbradach Christmas Pantomime

 

Search for Santa at Sirhowy Valley Country Park

A Little Mermaid’s Tale at Newbridge Memo

 

Peter Pan at Blackwood Miners’ Institute

 

Wooden Snowmen Making at Parc Cwm Darran

Visit Father Christmas in his Grotto at Caerphilly Castle in 2018

Caerphilly Christmas Market in Caerphilly Town Centre

Caerphilly’s Christmas Farmers and Artisan Market

Santa’s Winter Wonderland at Cwmcarn Forest Visitor Centre

 

 

Bargoed Ice Rink 2018

River of Light Lantern Workshops at Caerphilly Leisure Centre

Wooden Reindeer Making at Parc Cwm Darran Visitor Centre

Jack and The Beanstalk at Bedwas Workmen’s Hall 2018

 

Christmas Carols at Hosted by Maenllwyd Inn

River of Light Lantern Parade in Caerphilly Town Centre

Children’s Christmas Eve Eve Party with the Elves at Bryn Meadows Golf, Hotel & Spa

At the Night of the Movies – Cardiff Philharmonic Orchestra at Blackwood Miners’ Institute

 

A huge thank you to 1st Choice Caerphilly Taxis for sponsoring out Christmas Guide. Please click here to see how you can enjoy a 20% off Christmas and New Year’s rates. 

 

 

 

New Year’s Eve 2018 in Caerphilly County Borough

Looking for something fun to do for New Year’s Eve? Then, why not check out our guide below!

New Year’s Eve 2018 at Casa Mia Restaurant

New Years Eve 2018 at Maenllwyd Inn

New Year’s Eve 2018 at Bedwas Workmen’s Hall

New Year’s Event at Angel Bar and Grill

 

New Years Eve: The Fairway Suite at Bryn Meadows

New Year’s Eve 2018 at Maes Manor

NYE 2018: Neil Diamond Experience – Cwrt Rawlin Inn

New Year’s Eve at The Courthouse

New Year’s Eve at Kings Arms

Family New Year’s Eve Party with The Strip Light at Bedwas RFC

 

Don’t forget to book your taxi home. Click here to follow 1st Choice Caerphilly Taxi and enjoy a 20% off Christmas and New Year’s rates!

Fireworks Displays in the Caerphilly County Borough!

Looking for some safe firework fun? Then, why not head to one of these fantastic and well run displays in the beautiful Caerphilly County Borough this year!

Caerphilly Fireworks Display at Caerphilly Castle

Fireworks Night at Caerphilly Rugby Club

Bargoed Fireworks Display in Bargoed Town Centre

 

Family Fireworks Display at Blackwood RFC

Looking for other child friendly fun this half term? Then, why not click here to follow The Eden Centre – Caerphilly to see what events and fun they have in store!

The Greatest Showman at Caerphilly Castle

Having never experienced open air cinema before, I was super excited as I walked into the magnificent grounds of Wales’ largest castle. I was also full of important questions: Would it be loud enough? Would the picture be clear? Would they sell wine? And, would Hugh Jackman actually be able to sing?

As I walked in with my haul of three blankets, two coats, two sleeping bags and four jumpers, I was (as always) delighted with the gorgeous backdrop of my surroundings. I really couldn’t believe how lucky I was. I was also pleasantly surprised to see that there was a bar (woo hoo!) and, unlike many cinemas, the prices were reasonable (£10 for a bottle of wine, £1 for pop/sweets/popcorn and pizzas started at only £5.50). A great start indeed.
Then, it was time for the film to begin and my daughter literally yelped with excitement. Like many others, she sang quietly to the opening number and I was really surprised by just how fantastic the sound quality was. Despite being outside, the acoustics were perfect. I could hear everyone singing along but this didn’t detract from the film at all. In fact it just added to the fun filled atmosphere.

The timing of the start of the film meant that the picture quality was also of a very high standard and, as the evening grew darker, the beautiful backdrop of Caerphilly Castle became increasingly more majestic. My daughter kept looking around in amazement and I was also a little speechless; the glow of the beautiful, historical surroundings at night time and the stars shining down on us. It all just felt magical (as my daughter put it).
I also have to say a big thank you to the crowd. The relaxed vibe really added to the atmosphere. Everyone  was friendly and courteous, plus the  singing and crowd laughter was lovely. I can see why so many have ‘going to an outdoor cinema’ on their bucket list. This is definitely my new favourite way to see a film!
If you are planning on going to another one of these screenings with South Wales Outdoor Cinema, then here’s a few of my top tips:
– If you’ve only got blankets (like us), get there for when the doors open so that you can get a nice spot in front of the chairs.
– Take some blankets and cushions to sit on. The ground in Caerphilly Castle was perfect to sit on but if you’re at a venue with a harder surface, this would be a must.
– Take some things to cwtch up with. Last night, it was fairly warm so my sleeping bags weren’t really necessary but they did help to make everything extra comfy. My daughter and her best friend loved cuddling up in their sleeping bags before the film started and as the night grew a little colder, I loved getting warm hugs with my little one.
So, would I go again? Yes definitely and hope that more of these events happen here.


Oh and as for High Jackman, he can actually sing. Who knew? 😁

Week Six – W/C Monday 27th August

Here are the events for this week. Remember there are events running through the whole of the six weeks, please look at the bottom for the link!

Flying Kites and Lazy Owls at Caerphilly Castle

New and Expectant Parents at The Old Library with Tots Play Caerphilly

A Teddy Bears Picnic: Final Summer Family Play Session

Events running throughout the holidays

Week Five – W/C Monday 20th August

Here are the events for this week. Remember there are events running through the whole of the six weeks, please look at the bottom for the link!

Fairy Tales & Unicorns Interactive Story Trail at Bedwellty House and Park

Family friendly Heritage tour at Newbridge Memo

Unicorn Pamper Party Fun at Bedwellty House and Park

Meet the Dinosaurs at Kids Fun Playcentre

Summer Crafts: Musical Instruments at Newbridge Memo

Wildlife Warriors Treasure Hunt at Cwrt Rawlin School

Sunbeans Funday at Ysgol Gymraeg Caerphilly

Megaday (4th Street Headlining)- August 2018 – Virginia Park, Caerphilly

Events running throughout the holidays

 

Week Four – W/C Monday 13th August

Here are the events for this week. Remember there are events running through the whole of the six weeks, please look at the bottom for the link!

Summer Crafts: Theatre Masks at Newbridge Memo

Be A Planet Superhero! : Summer Family Play Session

Summer Session – at The Old Library with Jingle Jangle Jo

Wooden Giants at Parc Cwm Darran Visitor Centre

Drama session with Jingle Jangle at The Old Library

A&S Animal Encounters at Kids fun Play Centre

Events running throughout the holidays