North West Wales

Hedd Wyn: Poet's Yr Ysgwrn home receives £2.8m funding

The home of World War One poet Hedd Wyn has won £2.8m heritage lottery funding to safeguard its future and transform it into a museum.

Yr Ysgwrn, a Grade II* listed building near Trawsfynydd, Gwynedd, houses the bard's National Eisteddfod chair posthumously awarded in 1917.

The poet Ellis Humphrey Evans died in action at Passchendaele six weeks before the festival.

The money will conserve his eisteddfod chair and artefacts.

Efforts to save Yr Ysgwrn started after Hedd Wyn's nephew Gerald Williams raised concerns in 2009. Visitors to the farmhouse have been welcomed and his family had vowed to keep a promise made to the poet's mother, "to keep the door open".

Mr Williams, 85, said: "Keeping the door open at Yr Ysgwrn is a way of keeping the memory of my uncle alive and although I have always welcomed visitors here I was uncertain whether this could be maintained in the future."

Hedd Wyn
Hedd Wyn died at the Battle of Passchendaele six weeks before the eisteddfod

Legacy

The Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) money comes as Wales and the rest of the UK marks the centenary of the outbreak of World War One.

Dr Manon Antoniazzi, chair of the HLF committee for Wales, said: "Yr Ysgwrn gives a vivid impression of life in rural Wales during the First World War and serves as a memorial for not only Hedd Wyn, but the generation of young Welsh men who also lost their lives in the First World War.

"This project will secure the future of Yr Ysgwrn and the legacy of Hedd Wyn and ensure that future generations understand the significance of this great Welsh poet and his work."

Y Beudy Llwyd, a farm building on the site, will also be repaired and used to help inform visitors.

Snowdonia National Park Authority said Yr Ysgwrn had inspired several of Hedd Wyn's most well-known poems.

Chief executive Emyr Williams said: "Our aim now is to establish Yr Ysgwrn as an innovative cultural destination, which will convey messages about culture, society and war, to audiences in Snowdonia, Wales and the world."

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