Cadw’s Baby Dragons fly the nest

Tuesday 08 August 2017

From inquisitive hatchlings to mischievous little monsters

This morning (08 August), roars were heard a little louder than usual at Harlech Castle, where custodians woke to find two troublesome toddlers sat alongside Dwynwen the Dragon — with no nest in sight. 

After they hatched in May this year, Cadw’s Baby Dragons, Dylan and Cariad, set out on a tour of Wales’ castles, meeting and greeting people from all over the world, under the watchful eye of “mam”, Dwynwen.

But now the time has come for them to fly the nest as they take to the skies with the help of their newly powerful wings.

Dwynwen, who set up home at the castle on 01 August, was joined by the Babies in the early hours this morning. Meanwhile, “dad” Dewi continues to hold the fort at his home of Caerphilly Castle.

The playful pair have already delighted custodians and guests with their lively personalities — Dylan, a water dragon, can be seen squirting water from his mouth, while Cariad invites visitors to come and give her a warm Welsh “cwtch”.

The Baby Dragons’ arrival earlier this year marked a new chapter in the Welsh Government’s historic environment service (Cadw)’s Live the Legends campaign, which is bringing Wales’ dramatic sites and stories to life during Visit Wales’ 2017 Year of Legends. 

Ken Skates, Cabinet Secretary for Economy and Infrastructure, said: “The Cadw Dragon family continues to capture the imagination of locals and visitors alike, who have flocked in their numbers to catch a glimpse of Dewi, Dwynwen and the babies during their tour of Wales’ historic sites. 

“Since launching the Live the Legends campaign, Cadw has seen a 21% increase in paid visitors during quarter one of the year, putting us on track to achieve the best summer on record.”

The family of Cadw Dragons were brought to life by a team of 16 at Cardiff-based prop design specialist, Wild Creations. Dewi and Dwynwen, who weigh a whopping two tonnes each, and the babies were sculpted and moulded before being cast and built out of fibreglass.

Dwynwen and her whelps will stay at Harlech Castle until 13 August before going on a tour of north Wales, landing at Beaumaris Castle on 15 August where they will stay until 28 August. 

The Dragon Babies will then take their very first flight into the world, descending on Conwy Castle on 29 August until 17 September, leaving Dwynwen behind at Beaumaris for a well-earned break.   

Dwynwen and her Dragon Babies will return to their Caernarfon lair on 19 September, for a four-week stint.
No booking is required, but usual site admissions will apply.

Dragon spotters at Cadw sites are being encouraged to share their legendary experiences on social media by using the hashtag #LivetheLegends.

To find out more about Cadw’s Live the Legends campaign and to discover the story behind the Cadw Dragons visit cadw.gov.wales/livethelegends