Author: WCIA

Heddwch Nain Mam-gu: Gwynedd Women launch peace campaign on International Womens Day


Written on 01-03-2018 by Awel Irene

A world-wide campaign is being launched by a group of Gwynedd women to commemorate thousands of women who signed a peace petition following the First World War. The ‘Heddwch Nain/Mam-gu’ (Grandma’s Peace) launch will be held to celebrate International Women’s Day on 8th of March, with the photography exhibition ‘Women, War and Peace’ and workshops at Oriel Caffi Croesor, Croesor, Snowdonia.


Between 1923-24, over 390,000 Welsh women signed a petition to the women of America asking them to influence the country in becoming a key part of the League of Nations – and to play its part in achieving a world without war. Later, in 1926, over 2,000 women from North Wales marched to demonstrate their opposition to the atrocities of the First World War as part of the Women’s Peace Pilgrimage to London’s Hyde Park.

These extraordinary acts of peace came to light through the work of Wales for Peace, a Heritage Lottery funded project that is part of the Welsh Centre on International Affairs. Now, a group of Gwynedd women – Ifanwy Williams from Porthmadog, Iona Price from Tanygrisiau, Anna Jane from Caernarfon and Awel Irene from Llanfrothen – have come together to form Heddwch Nain/Mam-gu, a 7 year long campaign with its main aim to continue the efforts of the women who worked hard in the name of peace. They have already created a brand new Peace Petition and gathered 1,000 signatures from all over Wales. The campaign will be officially launched at the beginning of March in the village of Croesor, alongside the opening of the celebrated ‘Women War & Peace’ exhibition.

Heddwch Nain/Mam-gu organiser, Iona Price says: “My initial reaction to hearing about this amazing petition was that of shock and disbelief that I had never heard about it before – that is the reaction of most people. So a group of us have come together to make sure that we will never forget the voices of these women and that the plea for peace and a world without war would never be silenced.”

The Women, War and Peace Exhibition will remain at Caffi Croesor through the Easter Holidays.

On the evening before the launch, Wednesday, the 7th of March at 7.30pm, ‘Heddwch Nain/Mam-gu’ will be hosting a presentation by international  photojournalist Lee Karen Stow, who will be discussing her experience of travelling the world photographing women who have been affected by war and their efforts for peace.

On the 8th of March, Lee Karen Stow will run a workshop for young people in the area. At 2.30p, ‘Heddwch Nain/Mam-gu’ will be officially launched. In the evening, the women will be gathering at CellB, Blaenau Ffestiniog where an open discussion is held to celebrate International Women’s Day, as well as a screening of the film, ‘Dolores’ – everybody welcome!

7th March, 7.30 pm, Caffi Croesor Gallery – Presentation by the photographer, Lee Karen Stow

8th March, 2.30pm, Caffi Croesor Gallery – Official Launch of ‘Heddwch Nain-Mam-gu’

8th March, 6pm, CellB, Blaenau Ffestiniog – An open discussion about Women’s International Day by Shan Jamil Ashton before showing the film ‘Dolores’.

Find out more online at

For further information about the event, contact:

Wales for Peace is supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund and managed by the Welsh Centre for International Affairs, with 10 partner organisations.


Conscientious Objectors Day 2018: Exploring ‘Objection Then and Now’ in Swansea Valley

glossary school picture

Written on 15-05-2018 by Craig Owen

A new learning resource on objecting to conflict was launched on 2018 International Conscientious Objectors Day.

The resource was launched alongside a thought-provoking exhibition in a Swansea Valley school, as Wales remembered those who took a stand against World War One.



View Schools Resource ‘Objection Then and Now’ 

Ysgol Maesydderwen in Ystradgynlais – working with the Welsh Centre for International Affairs (WCIA) towards becoming one of Wales’ first ‘Peace Schools’, as a legacy of the WW1 centenary from 2014-18 –  are hosting the ‘Belief and Action’ exhibition from May 14-31st 2018 – open to the local community between 4-5pm on school days. The Swansea Valley was one of the UK’s ‘hotspots’ of opposition to WW1 a century ago – and WCIA’s exhibition, supported by Cymru’n Cofio / Wales Remembers 1914-18, draws on this ‘Peace Heritage’ to explore questions around how people stood up for what they believed to be right, and how this remains relevant today.


Putting in the Footwork! Setting up ‘Belief and Action’ in Ystradgynlais

International Conscientious Objectors Day is marked on 15 May each year in remembrance of men and women who have refused to fight on grounds of conscience: for religious or political beliefs, or as a point of principle. From WW1 and WW2 to conflicts of today such as Iraq and Syria, objectors have often been imprisoned or shamed for taking a stand against their government, and often by wider society. Nearly 900 men were sentenced for opposing military conscription in Wales during the First World War – marked on a slate memorial stone in Wales’ National Garden of Peace at the Temple of Peace, Cardiff.

On learning that objectors were sometimes posted ‘white feathers’ as a symbol of cowardice, Maesydderwen students commented: “If you’re told you’ve got to go to war… When the government, and a lot of society are bullying you to go to war; to refuse to fight is perhaps the most courageous thing you could do.”

The students discussed parallel issues of conflict in the world today, from the war in Syria, to suspected Russian cyberwarfare, to the importance of being critical about media balance and propaganda on social media. “Everyone should have their own opinion – and the choice to make their own decisions as to what is right and wrong.

‘Objection then and now’ is a new Learning Resource for Key Stages 3 and 4, developed by the Welsh Centre for International Affairs as part of the Heritage Lottery Funded ‘Wales for Peace’ programme, which supports critical thinking and questioning around issues of conflict, resistance and expressing views. Although cross-curricular, it is likely to be of particular interest to teachers delivering History, Geography, Religious Studies, Politics and Global Citizenship; and contains a range of ideas for student projects that may suit the Welsh Baccalaureate, as well as GCSE coursework.

WCIA would like to pay a special thanks to Learning Volunteer, Jeffrey Mansfield, for his work in researching and drafting the ‘Objection Then & Now’.

Screenshot from WCIA’s Wales Peace Map

Pearce Register of Conscientious Objectors (NB – select fullscreen version)

Finding out about Objection to WW1 in your area

Nearly 900 people in Wales were sentenced for opposition to WW1. Schools and communities across Wales can now find out more about objectors from their area, using WCIA’s ‘Peace Map’ and searching the Pearce Register of WW1 Conscientious Objectors. Wales is indebted to Cyril Pearce of the University of Leeds for his meticulous life’s work in collating this register of names, and for bequeathing the Welsh database – launched at the 2016 Eisteddfod in Abergavenny – for public access through the Wales for Peace project.

WCIA are also indebted to Aled Eurig of Cardiff University, who has shared his Doctoral Research into Welsh Conscientious Objectors on the centenary in 2016 of the Military Service Act (which enforced conscription); and has produced ‘Doves and Hawks’, a series of 3 engaging radio broadcasts exploring the stories of Conscientious Objectors.

International Conscientious Objectors Day Memorial Service

International Conscientious Objectors Day 2018 will be marked with a service in Tavistock Square in London, at midday on 15th May.

The Conscientious Objectors Memorial Stone in Tavistock Square, London

Credit: Peace Pledge Union

Becoming a Peace School?

Ysgol Maesydderwen are working towards becoming one of Wales’ first Peace Schools. They recently participated in a major project around Jewish WW2 refugee and world famous artist Josef Herman, who fled Poland in 1938 and was welcomed and settled in Ystradgynlais. Teacher Melissa Davies highlighted the enthusiasm their students have shown for projects on ethical citizenship, and offering sanctuary to refugees with a particular focus on those fleeing the Syria conflict today. To find out more about the Peace Schools scheme, contact WCIA / Jane Harries on 029 2022 8549 or email

Visiting the ‘Belief and Action’ Exhibition in Ystradgynlais

Visitors can view the ‘Belief and Action’ exhibition between 5-6pm on school days in Ysgol Maesydderwen, Ystradgynlais until 31st May; following which it will be displayed at Bridgend Quakers Meeting House from mid-June.

Ystradgynlais - Belief & Action Exhibition

Visit the Flickr Gallery of Maesydderwen’s ‘Belief and Action’ Exhibition

Wales for Peace Exhibition Tour launches in Holyhead


Written on 06-06-2018 by Craig Owen

June has seen the launch of WCIA’s final ‘Wales for Peace Exhibition Tour, in the Ucheldre Centre Holyhead from 6th June – 8th July 2018.

The Heritage Lottery Funded exhibition draws together work over the last 4 years by communities, schools and youth groups, to uncover Wales ‘peace heritage’ – exploring the question “how, in the 100 years since WW1, have the people of Wales contributed to the search for peace?”


Taking Action for Peace, Then and Now

Seven themes look at ‘actions for peace’ through the generations, and their relevance to issues world today, drawing on stories of ‘inspiring internationalists’ and how each sought to build a better world. Using the colours of the 1960s Peace Flag to guide the exhibition design and themes, has produced a very colourful display with a rich tapestry of volunteer generated stories on display, including digital touchscreen and a book of blogs.



Young Peacemakers ‘Art of Peace’

WCIA are particularly delighted to have worked with Ysgol David Hughes in Menai Bridge, to display artistic responses from the recent ‘Young Peacemakers Awards’ – from which students have produced a fantastic booklet sharing the inspiration behind their works.


Celebrating Local Internationalists

Several local organisations from Anglesey and Gwynedd are also celebrated in the exhibition for their contribution towards Welsh internationalism, including campaigning group UNA Menai (United Nations Association), Wales Lesotho Link Dolen Cymru, Gwerin y Coed / the Woodcraft Folk, and Cymdeithas y Cymod / the Fellowship of Reconciliation.

Wales-wide Exhibition Tour

Following display in Holyhead, the exhibition will move on to

  • Swansea in September,
  • Merthyr Tydfil in October, and
  • Cardiff’s Temple of Peace through Nov-Dec 2018
  • Storiel in Bangor in March 2019.
  • Aberystwyth in May 2019

Smaller ‘community pop-up exhibitions’ are also being shown in:

  • Llyn Brenig Visitor Centre, Conwy / Denbighshire (March-May 2018)
  • Llangollen International Eisteddfod, July 2018
  • Machynlleth, Owain Glyndwr Centre, August 2018.

The Wales for Peace Exhibition in Ucheldre Arts Centre, Holyhead

Llangollen International Eisteddfod: A Message of Peace Past, Present and Future


Written on 05-07-2018 by Craig Owen

Over the week of 2nd-8th July, Wales for Peace have been participating in the Llangollen International Eisteddfod – with a small ‘pop-up exhibition’ complementing the work of the Llangollen Archives Committee to capture the ‘Peace Heritage’ of this incredible festival of peace and reconciliation, borne out of the ashes of World War 2, that is now celebrating its 71st year.

WCIA’s contribution to Llangollen’s exhibition has focused on exploring the heritage of the Llangollen Youth Peace and Goodwill message, working with the Archives Committee and local partners. We are tremendously honoured to have been invited to present Wales’ Peace Heritage story, as the ‘Day Presidents Address’ for the 4th July.

WCIA would like to express our sincere gratitude to our ‘Peace Associates’ Awel Irene and Sarah Baylis for leading our work with the Llangollen local partners, and to Eisteddfod Chair Terry Waite CBE for their support for this ongoing peace heritage work.

Exploring Llangollen’s Stories Past

View 4 videos about Llangollen’s Peace and Goodwill Message (curated by Sarah Baylis and Awel Irene, edited by Llinos Griffin, Gwefus).

Sharing Llangollen’s Peace Heritage Today

The Archives Tent at the International Eisteddfod hosted an impressive exhibition drawing stories from across the decades from the start of the International Eisteddfod in 1947, to today – along with a Wales for Peace touch screen and pop-up exhibition.


View Flickr album of the Llangollen Archives Tent ‘Peace Heritage’ exhibition


Inspiring the Future

Read the text of Craig Owen’s address as Day President of the Eisteddfod for Wednesday 4th July (below)

Download Day President’s Address

Wales for Peace Address to the Llangollen International Eisteddfod

by Craig Owen, Head of Wales for Peace, as Day President on Wednedsay 4th July

Prynhawn Da

In 1922, the first Peace Message from the Children of Wales to the World,

contained a straightforward wish: a wish that there be





Today, conflict remains at the front of many of our minds

Not least those of our own children

As we mark the centenary of saying ‘NEVER AGAIN’ to war

We see a century of conflicts

The children of Wales have yet to see their wish fulfilled.


But the pursuit of Peace has been a vital part of Wales’ story,

Our nations story, our story

Over the last 100 years.


Over the last 4 years, the Wales for Peace project

Run by the Welsh Centre for International Affairs at the Temple of Peace

Supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund

Has been working with many national and local partners,

Including the Archives Committee here in Llangollen

To explore this big question:


How, in the 100 years since World War One, has Wales contributed to the search for peace?


It is a huge honour to be invited to address you today

And not just a little bit daunting, compared to the stellar figures who have taken this stage before

Compared to whom I am a mere mortal

But my story in some ways is Wales’ story, and Llangollen’s story, and perhaps your story?

A shared story of ordinary people doing extraordinary things

To build a better world.


In 1914-15, as WW1 was at its height

Wales offered sanctuary to over 4,500 Belgian Refugees

Fleeing the fighting on the front


In the 1930s, Wales would go on to offer sanctuary to Basque children

Fleeing the Spanish civil war


In 1922, the first Young People’s Peace Message

From the children of Wales to the children of the world

Was broadcast


In 1923, a Welsh Women’s Peace Petition

Was signed by 390,296 women Wales-wide

In an incredible door to door campaign

Calling for America to join the League of Nations

And become a leader in world peace.


In 1926, the North Wales Women’s Peace Pilgrimage

Set off from Penygroes in Caernarfonshire

With 2,000 women flying the blue flag of peace

They marched to Caernarfon Castle

And then to Conwy, along the North Wales Coast

And all the way to Hyde Park


In 1926, the League of Nations held their International Peace Congress

In Aberystwyth

The equivalent of the UN General Assembly today


In 1929, the Welsh Education Advisory Committee – the Teachers of Wales –

produced not only the first ‘Peace Education’ curriculum in the world

But also a manifesto for the 1929 General Election

Their ideas would go on to become enshrined

As the blueprint from which UNESCO was founded


In 1935, Peace Ballot


In 1938, Wales’ Temple of Peace was opened in Cathays Park, Cardiff.

The first building in the UK dedicated to the cause of Peace.

In the memory of all those who had lost theirs in WW1.


In 1939…

The world ended.


In 1946, the children’s peace message received a heartrending reply – from the children of Germany.

“It is years since we heard from the Welsh children


We should love to hear from you again.”


In June 1947, out of the horrors of WW2 nothing captured the spirit of ‘NEVER AGAIN’

Than the idea of a music festival, in a beautiful setting, with peace and reconciliation as its mission

52 choirs from across the UK, and 10 from other countries,

Packed out the local schools’ recreation ground, on which we now stand.


In 1949, the Children’s Peace Message to the world was broadcast from Llangollen

Llinos Roberts presented the first message, from this very stage

Up to 1983 it replicated the Urdd’s own Peace and Goodwill Message

And from then till now, the two have been separate but complementary

For many years, it followed a formal format

And in more recent years it has become far more youth-led and youth-inspired

Exactly as it should be!


In 1949, Llangollen also welcomed the Luebeck Choir, demonstrating peace and reconciliation in action

The first competitors from Germany

WW2 was still very raw; many in Llangollen and in Luebeck had lost relatives fighting each other

But on the Tuesday of Eisteddfod week, the town staged a special welcome concert

That was to be one of the first post-WW2 cultural exchanges


In 1953, the Obernkirchen Childrens Choir was described by Dylan Thomas, on his visit to Llangollen, as ‘the pigtailed angels’.

Their song, ‘the Happy Wanderer’, rocketed to the top of the charts

And the BBC / Parlophone recording sold millions

What a change in public outlook in less than a decade

From enemy foes to musical love

As cultures healed through music and exchange

The choir returned to Llangollen again in 1960


Through the 1940s and 50s, Welsh peace makers helped to found major organs of the United Nations

The UN Secretariat

UNDP the Development Programme


UN peacekeeping missions and the security council

The International Labour Organisation ILO

The World Meteorological Organisation…  Well, we in Wales normally have a lot of experience of rain.


In 1981, women from Newport, Cardiff and Swansea started a march to an air force base in Berkshire to protest against nuclear weapons.

They didn’t go home for 19 years, as the Greenham Common women’s peace camp grew to become one of the longest peace demonstrations in recent history.


In 1985 Dolen Cymru, the world’s first nation to nation twinning, linked Wales and Lesotho in Southern Africa, now in its 33rd year


In 1995, a Serbian Choir made it to Llangollen, having had to practice in cellars

And fleeing through the frontline of the Balkans war to bring the voice of reconciliation to Llangollen

A cry for peace on Europe’s own doorstep.

In 2004 the Llangollen International Eisteddfod was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize


The International Eisteddfod is very much part of Wales’ Peace Heritage story

And Wales is very much part of the Eisteddfod’s international and heritage story.



Please visit the Archives Tent

Find out for yourself some of the fantastic stories

Of inspiring internationalists, ordinary people who did the extraordinary

Here in Llangollen

As well as using the archives though

Could you volunteer your time or support?

Do we have any budding philanthropists in the room?

Could you give to help the Archives project to get under way,

and to access Heritage Lottery Funding to capture these stories for future generations?

In particular, towards marking the 75th Anniversary of Llangollen in 4 years time.

Also – please sign the Peace Train Petition

For World Peace Day this September, this petition will make its way by train

from towns across Wales, to London

Calling for the UK Government to sign up to the Anti Nuclear Proliferation Treaty

Retracing the steps of some of those great peacemakers from the 20s and 30s


You don’t have to be Mandela to change the world

We can all take actions for peace in our own ways

We are all peacemakers

We can all remember loss of war

We can all oppose conflict

We can all offer sanctuary to refugees

We can all champion equality

We can all build global solidarity

We can all inspire future generations

We can all work together.

We can all create peace in our time

In our classrooms, playgrounds, communities, cultures, countries,

in our world, and in our hearts and minds,


For WCIA and Llangollen,

Our shared desire is to inspire

A new generation of internationalists


Not to yearn with nostalgia, for a past now gone

But to learn with inspiration, and a questioning mind, for a present now here

And to burn with passion, for a world of peace and justice

And a future that is yours to shape.



Write it, create it, play it, sing it, take it, shape it, make it

Your are all the Peacemakers of Now


These are your communities

This is your international Eisteddfod

This is your Wales

This is your world.

This is your piece of peace.

You are the peacemakers of today and tomorrow

You can shape peace in our time.


Diolch yn fawr iawn – Thankyou.



“A Oes Heddwch?” 100 years pursuing Peace at the National Eisteddfod

Wales Peace Flag

Written on 03-08-2018 by Craig Owen

100 years ago this week, at the Neath National Eisteddfod in August 1918, a soldier – returned from the trenches of WW1 – took to the stage to propose the creation of a ‘Welsh League of Nations Union’. David Davies of Llandinam, horrified by what he had witnessed in war, called for all at that Eisteddfod to pledge to the pursuit of peace – 3 months ahead of the Armistice that would end WW1 on 11.11.1918.
100 years later, as the crowds descend on Cardiff, Peace campaigners repeat this call from the Peace Tent at the 2018 National Eisteddfod – with a programme of events marking the week.

Jump to:
Neath Eisteddfod 100
Cardiff Peace Trail
Wales’ National Garden of Peace
Annual Peace Lecture
Peace Tent and Hiroshima Day event

Welsh Refugee Coalition Tent Programme

The Neath Eisteddfod of 1918 – a Call for Peace

“At the National Eisteddfod in Neath in August 1918, David Davies first suggested the formation of the Welsh League of Nations Union, saying that Wales had an important role to play in the campaign for world peace. As the Union was formed in 1918 it had 3,217 members, but by 1922 this had grown dramatically to over 200,000. In 1920, Davies donated £30,000 to set up an endowment fund to establish a Welsh National Council of the League of Nations Union. By 1922 it had 280 local branches, and by 1926 the number had grown to 652.”

By Elgan Philips, “When Aberystwyth hosted an International Peace Congress,” May 2016

The Welsh League of Nations Union borne out of the 1918 Neath Eisteddfod, grew to play an instrumental role in shaping national life in the 1920s and 30s, and much of the ‘psyche’ of Wales as we know it to today. Women, children, teachers, religious leaders, workers, artists, academics and philanthropists led the world in grassroots peace building initiatives.

Welsh Efforts for World Peace, 1920s

Cardiff Eisteddfod 2018: Answering the Call

Launch of City of Cardiff Peace Trail – Tuesday 7th, 2.45 / 3.30pm, Societies 3 (Senedd Building)

In 2013, a Temple75 Peace Trail was trialled around Cardiff as part of WCIA’s 75th Anniversary of the Temple of Peace. Between 2016-18, Cymdeithas y Cymod with funding from Annibynwyr (the Union of Welsh Independent Churches) have been working with journalist Jon Gower and ex-Eisteddfod President Dr. R Alun Evans to develop a new ‘City of Cardiff Peace Trail’ which will be launched at the Eisteddfod:

  • 2.45 – Launch of Taith Heddwch Caerdydd / Cardiff Peace Trail. Join Jon Gower and R Alun Evans for the launch of the Cardiff Peace Journey booklet. A trip will follow at 15:30. (NB Please allow 15 minutes for passage through security) . A Cymdeithas y Cymod Session
  • 3.30 – Cardiff Peace Tour. Join Jon Gower and R Alun Evans on a tour by the Fellowship of Reconciliation in Wales, ending at Wales’ National Garden of Peace.

National Garden of Peace: #Garden30 and #Temple80

Wales National Garden of Peace was first dedicated on 23rd November 1988, to mark the 50th Anniversary of the opening of the Temple of Peace. A time capsule was buried by 8-year old Cardiff school pupil Richard Mears with 93 year old Irene Chamberlain, one of the women representing WW1 war mothers who were asked to open the Temple of Peace. To date, over 40 memorials have been dedicated to peace movements and individuals.

For the launch of the Cardiff Peace Trail, WCIA’s Wales for Peace volunteers have produced a new leaflet offering a guide to these memorials, including stories of just some of the inspiring people commemorated in this national monument in the heart of Cardiff.


In November 2018, the Welsh Centre for International Affairs will be holding a month long programme of events to mark the 80th anniversary of the Temple of Peace – to include a 30th anniversary rededication of the Peace Garden with International Youth Service volunteers and peace groups on Sunday 25th November. WCIA’s #Temple80 programme will be available from early September at and

Members of Cymdeithas y Cymod as well as Welsh Historic Garden Trust  have expressed interest in ‘adopting’ the Peace Garden after WCIA’s HLF-funded Wales for Peace project comes to a close at the end of 2018.

Annual Peace Lecture – Wednesday 8th , 16.30, Societies 2 (Senedd Building)

Lifelong peace activist Jane Harries MBE, WCIA’s Wales for Peace Learning Coordinator, will be presenting the 2018 Quakers in Wales Annual Eisteddfod Lecture: “Our third lecture will be given by Jane Harries, on aspects of the legacy of peace and peace-making in Wales, as commemoration of World War I comes to a close.” Quakers

Wales, a Peaceful Nation? A critical look at Wales’ peace heritage since WW1

(Eisteddfod event post – WCIA Event post)


View Jane Harries’ article in Freedom News, “A Oes Heddwch?”

Jane Harries MBE introduces the Quaker Annual Eisteddfod Lecture for 2018:

Post-Event Resources

To view a video recording of Jane Harries’ Quaker Peace Lecture at the National Eisteddfod, view the Youtube Playlist at

You can listen to audio translation into English (please note – low quality due to being through a translation headset) at:

WCIA hope to recruit a volunteer to add English subtitles to the video recording. If you would be interested in this opportunity, please contact

Pabell Heddwch / Peace Tent – all week (4th – 11th August)

The Peace Tent (stalls 415-6), adjacent to the Norwegian Church in Cardiff Bay, will be open through Eisteddfod week supported by volunteers from Cymdeithas y Cymod and CND Cymru, with a week-long programme of events.


On Monday, a gathering was held at the Eisteddfod to mark Hiroshima Day – the 73rd anniversary of the world’s first atomic bomb dropped on the city of Hiroshima, Japan, killing 297,684 people who are remembered worldwide. Jill Evans MEP spoke at this year’s Cardiff Eisteddfod Hiroshima Day event in support of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, in particular supporting CND Cymru’s call for the UK to sign up to the UN Nuclear Prohibition Treaty.

Last year, in December 2017, the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons – ICAN – were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for their decades of work campaigning for the UN treaty. CND Cymru have been campaigning for nuclear disarmament since the 1960s.

– View CND Archive on Peoples Collection Wales 

Many Welsh schools and youth groups in recent years have participated in Paper Cranes projects inspired by Sadako Sasaki, a child victim of the nuclear bomb, as their expression of a desire for a world of nuclear disarmament.

Throughout the week, CND Cymru will be promoting and gathering signatures on the ‘Peace Train Petition’, to be taken from all over Wales to London on World Peace Day, September 21st 2018 calling for the UK Government to sign up to the UN Nuclear Prohibition Treaty.

Cymdeithas y Cymod will also be promoting and gathering signatures for the Heddwch Nain Mamgu petition, inspired by the 1920s Women’s Peace petition to America, calling for greater international cooperation towards peace through the United Nations.

peace through the United Nations.

Welsh Refugee Coalition Tent – all week (4th – 11th August)

WCIA (the Welsh Centre for International Affairs) are partners in the Welsh Refugee Coalition, whose stall (117-118) in Cardiff Bay will be supporting visitors to understand how we can all support refugees fleeing war as part of Wales’ commitment to becoming a ‘Nation of Sanctuary’.

View article Hundreds of teddies looking for a home – the Welsh Refugee Coalition at the Eisteddfod

View the Welsh Refugee Coalition’s timetable of events at the National Eisteddfod.

View WCIA’s Wales for Peace ‘Refugees and Sanctuary’ hidden histories timeline.


Wales Peace History Conference for UN World Peace Day, 21-22 Sept 2018


Marking UN World Peace Day on Friday 21st September 2018, Wales’ Temple of Peace are delighted to host the Wales Peace History Conference 2018 – a gathering over two days of leading academics, students and peace activists exploring in depth understanding of Wales’ peace heritage.

The programme, organised by poet and Professor Mererid Hopwood of University of Wales Trinity St. David, will bring together people from all corners will come together to learn more about the peace-makers of Wales and the world.

The event will include sessions on conscientious objectors, the contribution of women to peace-making in the 20th century, the testimony of poets and writers and public art.

A range of speakers will also be contributing to the event including Sophie Howe, Future Generations Commissioner for Wales; author and broadcaster, Jon Gower, and artist and blacksmith, David Petersen.

A number of eminent academics from Universities across Wales will also host sessions during the two-day event in Cardiff.

Organising Professor Mererid Hopwood said: “It’s a privilege to be able to welcome this conference to Wales. Alongside a range of interesting lectures, conference-goers will be able to enjoy an artistic programme that includes literature, music and the visual arts.”

The conference – which is being sponsored by the Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol – forms part of an annual series which has in the past been held in other cities, including Manchester, Leeds and London but this is the first time for Wales to host it.

The event will also offer a preview of event plans for the 80th Anniversary of Wales’ Temple of Peace, to be marked through November 2018.

View Conference Programme:

UWTSD Press Release

Wales’ WW1 Belgian Refugees’ Story shared in Brussels


Written on 14-09-2019 by Craig Owen

In WW1, Wales took in over 4,500 Belgian Refugees fleeing the front in Flanders. 100 years later, WCIA Peace Programme Manager Craig Owen shared this story with researchers in Brussels at the ‘Belgian Refugees Symposium’ – but with a particular focus on exploring successive waves of sanctuary from WW1 to today, leading up to Wales’ current campaign to become the world’s first ‘Nation of Sanctuary’.

2 years of community projects exploring the topic of Belgian Refugees following a lecture in Aberystwyth in March 2016, which aroused a great deal of interest. Following this, Wales for Peace developed a whole theme within Welsh peace heritage around Refugees and Sanctuary.

Craig’s presentation, as part of the ‘Celtic Fringe’ perspectives, was complemented by two community contributions:

The symposium in Brussels followed on from a Belgian Refugees Symposium held in Cardiff in November 2017. The Brussels symposium brought together perspectives from across the whole UK, as well as Belgium itself; and laid the foundations for consolidation of the knowledge gathered, and for future research.

WCIA recently worked with the Global Learning Programme to develop a series of resources for schools teaching refugees and sanctuary, which should be available from Hwb in Autumn 2018.

View WCIA Presentation

Refugees and Sanctuary in Wales – PDF

Learning Resources

Refugees & Sanctuary learning resources to follow from Hwb.

View Photo Album on Flickr –




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