Through November 2018, the Welsh Centre for International Affairs organised an ambitious programme of events to mark the 80th Anniversary of the opening of Wales’ Temple of Peace on Nov 23rd 1938, as well as #WW100 – the centenary of the Armistice of 11th Nov 1918, and beginning of the post-WW1 “Peace Process” that shaped global relations over the century since.
WCIA delivered over 43 events with a wide range of partners, each exploring an area of Wales’ ‘Peace Heritage’, and the work of Temple organisations past, present and future – as well as showcasing through the Wales for Peace Exhibition the work of volunteers and communities who have contributed to the Wales for Peace programme between 2014-18. This blog aims to draw together links and resources from all these activities, as they become available.
Voices of 1938 – Clippings Projection
Voices of Temple80 – Film
Temple80 November Programme of Events (scroll down for recordings / outputs)
View full programme of events – English; Welsh; Eventbrite
View Temple80 Exhibition Guide – English; Welsh
Listen to ‘Assemble’, composed for Temple80 / WW100 by Iffy Iwobi and Jon Berry
Temple80 Anniversary Evening
Centrepiece of Temple80 was the Gala evening on 23rd November, attended by about 230 people and including:
– Self-Guided Tours of the Temple of Peace, and Temple80 / Wales for Peace exhibition.
– ‘A New Mecca’ Performance in partnership with Dr. Emma West, Uni of Birmingham and British Academy; Being Human Festival; Gentle Radical Arts Collective; and 50 volunteers and participants from diverse community groups. View ‘A New Mecca for today’ Being Human Festival blog by Dr Emma West.
– Communal Rededication of the Hall of Nations (back to its original 1938 title, as discovered from the archives)
– Food, Drink and Fireworks
– Launch of ‘Voices of Temple80’ Documentary Film by Tracy Pallant / Amy Peckham / Valley & Vale Community Arts
– WCIA VIPs Reception and alumni reunion, with Cutting of a ‘Rainbow Cake’
Peace Garden 30th Anniversary
On Saturday 24th, this was followed by a #PeaceGarden30 Rededication and Family Fun Day, in which WCIA brought together UNA Exchange international volunteers and alumni and Garden of Peace Founder Robert Davies, with children from Roath Park Primary School
Together they unveiled 2 new colourful mosaics (created by international volunteers) on a new archway entrance in the Peace Garden; buried a Time Capsule in the Garden, to be opened in 50 years time; and unveiled a plaque on one of WCIA’s meeting rooms in honour of Robert Davies, and all international youth volunteers inspired by him from 1973 to today.
#Temple80 ‘Wales for Peace’ Exhibition
The Exhibition accompanying Temple80 sought to draw together the story of the Temple, with Wales’ peace heritage of the last 100 years – including hidden histories gathered by community groups and volunteers 2014-18 – along with responses from young people, schools and artists.
Artists in Residence showcased a range of responses for visitors to delve deeper into the Temple’s stories:
Recordings / Outputs from Temple80 Events
Building the Exhibition
FACEBOOK LIVE – WELSH WOMEN & PEACE
FACEBOOK LIVE – 1980S ANTI NUCLEAR CAMPAIGNERS
A New Mecca for Today? Being Human Festival Blog by Dr. Emma West, British Academy
‘We Will Remember Them’ – BBC Documentary by Huw Edwards (Temple of Peace features in about 5 minutes of content, with Dr Emma West and Dr Alison Fell)
How Wales’ most Tragic Mother spread Peace and Hope – Western Mail / Wales Online
Cardiff’s Temple of Peace opens its doors to celebrate 80th birthday – University of Birmingham article
War Mothers as Peace Builders – University of Birmingham
Remembrance Weekend at Temple of Peace – The Cardiffian
Temple of Peace turns 80 – The Cardiffian
Social Media Archives
Twitter Feed & Media: https://twitter.com/walesforpeace?lang=en
Youtube Videos Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC0G2l7QV_yPDU4RHB8hEEPg?view_as=subscriber
Soundcloud Event Recordings: https://soundcloud.com/walesforpeace
Flickr Photo Albums: https://www.flickr.com/photos/129767871@N03/albums
People’s Collection Wales archive collections: https://www.peoplescollection.wales/user/8498/author/8498/content_type/collection/sort/date
Facebook Community Page: https://www.facebook.com/pg/walesforpeace/posts
The trustees of the Welsh Centre for International Affairs (the WCIA) have decided that converting the charity’s status from a charitable trust to a charitable incorporated organisation (CIO) best serves the charity’s interests. As a result, in May 2014, the assets, business and affairs of the original WCIA charity (registered charity number 259701), were transferred to a newly created CIO with the same name and logo (registered charity number 1156822).
A CIO is a new legal form for a charity. Whilst it is an incorporated organisation, it is not a company and has to register with the Charity Commission, not Companies House. The Charity Commission has more information.
Our Chief Executive, Martin Pollard says that the main advantages of a CIO over the traditional charitable trust form are that:
“The WCIA now has a legal personality of its own,which means it can conduct business in its own name, rather than in the name of the trustees.
Also, a CIO’s trustees are usually personally safeguarded from the financial liabilities the charity incurs, which is not normally the case for unincorporated charities.
Our change of status will have no external impact on the WCIA’s work. Becoming a CIO will not affect our aims, activity plans, membership structures, accounting arrangements or ability to fundraise; nor does it affect our ability to operate under the separate names of CEWC and UNA Wales.
This is an exciting time for the WCIA with our bid for Heritage Lottery funding to support our Wales for Peace project.
The WCIA is most grateful to Martyn Robinson of Geldards LLP Cardiff office for all his hard work and assistance in effecting a smooth transfer of operations and for his and his firm’s generosity in providing pro bono legal services.”
Giselle Davies (Head of Charity Law and Social Enterprise at Geldards LLP) said “I am delighted that my team was able to support the work of WCIA by dealing with their transition to a corporate body in order to provide a safe platform for the future development of the organisation and the excellent work they undertake for the people of Wales”.
Geldards has a Charities and Social Enterprise section that acts for all types of charitable organisations.
Written on 04-08-2017 by Ffion Fielding
In the 100 years since the First World War, how have women in Wales felt the impact of war, and contributed to the search for peace? This is the question that WCIA’s ‘Wales for Peace’ project explores with world-renowned photojournalist, Lee Karen Stow, in our latest exhibition: Women, War and Peace.
The exhibition will be on display in the Senedd from August 8th 2017 to the end of September.
Lee Karen Stow is a photojournalist from Yorkshire whose work has been displayed at venues across the world – including Cambridge University and the UN headquarters in New York. She has travelled the world collecting stories of war and peace, and for the first time this summer a selection of her work will be on display in Wales.
The inspiration for her documentary work came from a visit to Sierra Leone in 2007, when she met women displaced by a decade of civil war. Since then she has travelled the world recording the personal stories of women of war and conflict, and women who campaign for peace.
Then, in Lee’s words: “In 2017 Wales for Peace asked me to photograph some of the many women in Wales involved in or affected by war and conflict, along with a fraction of women who have campaigned and who continue to work and hope for peace. The faces on the walls will only be a few examples of the many individuals out there whose stories have yet to be told and shared. We hope this exhibition can begin a conversation about the historic and ongoing presence of war on our lives, and the ongoing search for peace.”
Lee’s work has also been an inspiration to the next generation of photojournalists, thanks to a linked project. Whilst Lee was visiting Wales, Ffotogallery, the national agency for photography in Wales, filmed her in an interview with some photography students from Whitchurch High school, Cardiff, talking about her work. This film was then used as inspiration for a series of workshops in 6 schools across south Wales, who produced documentary films about a peace story in their community. A selection of these films will be available to see as part of the exhibition.
Two of the historical documents held in the Temple of Peace will be on display alongside the documentary work, which give us a new perspective on the impact of the First World War on women. The Welsh National Book of Remembrance, contains the names of around 35,000 names of men and women who died in the First World War. The focus for this exhibition will be on the women listed under the Queen Mary Army Auxiliary Corps. As ever, the digital copy of the Book, created by the National Library of Wales, will be available alongside the real thing, so that people can take a closer look.
The women’s petition for peace, 1923-24, is a little known document with an extraordinary story. Over the course of a few short months 390,296 women in Wales (around 60% of the female population at the time) signed a petition asking the women of America to use their influence to ask their government to join the League of Nations, as a means of avoiding the horror of another world war. The petition’s beautiful frontpiece will be on display and we will further explore its history as part of the exhibition.
Ffion Fielding, Exhibitions and Engagement Coordinator for Wales for Peace, explained: “When we became aware of Lee’s work, we jumped at the chance to bring such a high-profile photographer to Wales. As a project we work with communities to find and share their ‘hidden histories’, and we often felt that women’s stories were missing, particularly in relation to the First World War. We hope the exhibition will inspire families to research their own stories, and share them with the nation through the Wales for Peace project. We’re very grateful to the National Assembly for the chance to develop and share this work”.
Throughout the summer of 2017, as a response to the exhibition, we will be asking people to contribute the stories of the women in their lives who have been affected by war or who have campaigned for peace. You can keep an eye on this campaign through Twitter @walesforpeace #womenwarpeace, or you can go straight to the peace map on our website to add their story.
Funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and National Assembly for Wales.
Visit WCIA’s Women, War and Peace histories pages and #WomenWarPeace Exhibition page.
View Flickr Album of Exhibition Setup
View Digital Stories by South Wales Schools exploring ‘Women Poppies and War’ (link to Youtube or view below)
A former Wales for Peace Volunteer developed a survey on Attitudes towards Peace survey
In 2017, Trystan Cullinan, created this survey, for people across Wales and beyond to complete.
Peace is an ideal that is almost universally aspired to, but achieving peace is another matter. Here, Trystan, our WCIA and Wales for Peace volunteer, is conducting peace research in Wales through a short and accessible survey.
He said: “To fully achieve peace we must first understand what it means and what it entails; how does it arise and how can we sustain it? The purpose of this survey is to see what people in Wales, and people further afield, think about peace. What do people value when thinking about peace? I hope it gets you thinking!”
The survey is informed by the Institute of Economics and Peace’s (IEP) Positive Peace reports; their data is empirically derived using the Positive Peace Index. Their eight pillars of peace have had an influential impact on how the survey is structured.
Trystan added: “The scale of our project however is small in comparison therefore there is an emphasis on qualitative data collection; unique individual opinion is what’s important. The value of this survey rest on its ability to balance both qualitative and quantitative aspects.”
Take the survey – it takes up to 5 minutes to complete.
Written on 08-11-2017 by Craig Owen
The Welsh Book of Remembrance from the First World War, a national treasure housed in Wales’ Temple of Peace in Cardiff, has been digitised and is now publicly searchable online at BookofRemembrance.Wales, following a 2 year project involving over 150 volunteers from communities across Wales, working with the Welsh Centre for International Affairs and National Library of Wales and supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.
The beautiful, leather bound Book of Remembrance contains on velum parchment – illuminated in gold leaf, fine ink and calligraphy – the names of over 40,000 “men and women of Welsh birth and parentage, and of all those belonging to the regiments of Wales, who gave their lives in the war 1914-1918.”
Researched and compiled by hand through the 1920s by a women working with renowned calligrapher Graily Hewitt of Lincoln’s Inn and the Gregynog Press, the book is the Roll of Honour to accompany the WW1 War Memorial in Cathays Park, opened by King Edward VII in 1928. Opposite Wales’ War Memorial, the Temple of Peace – opened in 1938 – was built to house the book, and in memory of those who had lost their lives, to ‘become a symbol of Wales’ determination to strive for justice and peace for future generations’. These words were spoken in 1938 by Minnie James, a mother from Merthyr Tydfil who had lost 3 sons in WW1, and who was asked to open the Temple of Peace on behalf of the war-bereaved mothers and widows of the world.
Finding Individuals in the Book of Remembrance
For Remembrance Day 2017, WCIA and the National Library are delighted to launch the digitised Book of Remembrance online, at:
Functionality enabling users and the public for the first time to search and view the inscriptions honouring individual soldiers, nurses, relatives and community members who died in WW1, by typing names of individuals, home towns or regiments in to the ‘search’ box at the bottom. Users can then view the inscriptions individually.
Sir Emyr Jones Parry, WCIA President, said: “It is right that we remember the sacrifices made by so many Welsh men and women during the First World War. The echo is constant and now the Welsh National Book of Remembrance is available online so that descendants, historians and those interested can access details of those who died for a peaceful future.”
The Regimental Collections of names can also be viewed on People’s Collection Wales.
Transcription of the 40,000 names was undertaken over the course of 2 years by volunteers in Aberystwyth, Cardiff, Caernarfon and Bangor, along with young people from a number of schools, colleges and community groups, as a ‘digital act of remembrance’. WCIA and NLW would like to pay tribute to volunteers whose efforts have enabled this national treasure to be accessible online for future generations.
The Book at Bodelwyddan Castle, Denbighshire; volunteer Mared transcribes at the Eisteddfod in Anglesey; school children in Wrexham participate in a ‘transcribathon’
“My grandfather was an engineer in the Merchant Navy and his ship, the S.S. Memnon was torpedoed. As a family we always mentioned him as having died in the war, but nothing more. Looking through old boxes, I found some of his medals, and taking part in the transcription prompted me to do some more research into his story”.
Gwenno Watkin, Aberystwyth – whose grandfather’s story was featured in WCIA’s exhibition in the National Library of Wales:
The records are also being made available as an open source data set with the invitation – and challenge – for organisations, students and programmers to develop web-based resources that enable people to find out more about those who lost their lives. The data set will be accessible within coming weeks from the National Library’s online Research tools (NLW data):
One organisation picking up the data challenge is the UK’s Imperial War Museum, who will be integrating the WCIA project into their IWM War Memorials Register, which seeks to record every war memorial, both extant and lost, in the United Kingdom, with the names of the men and women that are commemorated on them. The completion of the Welsh Book of Remembrance enables IWM to reach their long-held target of a million memorials, which they have been working towards since 1989.
To mark the WW1 centenary period, the Book has been touring Wales as the centrepiece of WCIA’s ‘Remembering for Peace’ exhibition, complementing the Poppies: Weeping Window sculptures in Caernarfon Castle through Autumn 2016, and Cardiff Bay in Autumn 2017 as well as appearances at Bodelwyddan Castle, Denbighshire, Narberth Museum, Pembrokeshire, and Oriel Ynys Mon, Anglesey.
The tour was launched at the Senedd on Remembrance Day 2015, as part of the “National Assembly Remembers” events programme. The Remembering for Peace exhibition can now be viewed online, and on week days in the entrance lobby of Cardiff’s Temple of Peace; and the original Book of Remembrance itself can be viewed by booking on one of WCIA’s regular ‘Temple Tours’, advertised via the WCIA website.
HLF Cymru, 2015
Throughout the 1920s – with an absence of dependable and centralised records – a nationwide drive was launched across Wales, with significant support of women’s movements, to try to capture the names of all those who perished. However, some families held mixed and raw emotions on the nature of remembrance. Many felt their loved ones had been ‘cannon fodder’ for governments in a needless and wasteful war – and refused for their names to be used on institutional memorials that they perceived to glorify war, or justify further military recruitment. Out of such debates emerged the powerful symbols of the red and white poppies (see below), favoured by the military and peace movements for remembrance respectively. The symbolic significance of the book is often seen to be as important as its role as a record of the fallen:
“The collection of the names.. was a work of considerable magnitude… and although the list can scarcely be claimed to be absolutely accurate and complete, the greatest care has been taken to make it so.” Excerpt from the Programme of the Unveiling Ceremony for the Welsh National Memorial.
For relatives seeking to remember a loved one, or schools seeking to undertake projects that connect with the people behind the names in the book, WCIA and NLW continue to appeal for stories that can be contributed to soldiers records on Wales at War.
Soldiers Stories can take the form of short pieces of research, blogs or multimedia projects, and are a deeply moving way to remember those who lost their lives 100m years ago.
Llandrillo College, 2016
Ysgol Cym Rhymni, 2017
Women, War & Peace, 2017
Media Enquiries about the Wales for Peace project / Book of Remembrance
For further information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org, contact the Welsh Centre for International Affairs on 02920228549, or Head of Wales for Peace Craig Owen 07876638846.
Written on 10-11-2017 by Awel Irene
On November the 10th and 11th, members of Cymdeithas y Cymod, the Fellowship of Reconciliation in Wales will be meeting in Caernarfon to remember. As well as remembering their forefathers and grandfathers who were killed during wars, they will be recalling the depth of the loss suffered by their grandmothers. As a result these women deeply desired to create a world without war.
In 1923, 390,296 women from Wales signed a petition calling for countries to resolve their differences without resorting to violence and war. This amounted to sixty per cent of the women living in Wales at that time. The women went to every farm and house in Wales and Monmouthshire collecting names. In presenting the petition to the American President, Calvin Coolidge in 1924, this is what the women said:
“Our constant hope and prayer is that our message may contribute something towards the realisation of the proud heritage of a warless world.”
The Cymdeithas y Cymod meetings in the Galeri will have this spirit of rememberence.
For more information please contact Anna Jane Evans on 0790 1545 114 / email@example.com or Awel Irene on 0786 7790 971 / firstname.lastname@example.org
Women’s Peace Petition with the Commemorative Plaque on Caernarfon’s Cae Llechi
Welsh women prepare to present the 1923 Peace Petition to US President Calvin Coolidge
2016 re-enactment of the 1926 North Wales Women’s Peace Pilgrimage outside Caernarfon Castle