Fifteen heritage projects reach final of Heritage Angel Awards Wales

Monday 10 September 2018

  • Insole Court

  • Insole Court

Fifteen outstanding examples of heritage achievement have been selected for a Heritage Angel Award by a panel of judges headed by Baroness Kay Andrews. Sponsored by the Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation, the awards will celebrate the work of volunteers, trainees, apprentices, young people and heritage professionals in repairing or rescuing historic buildings or making new discoveries.  

In the ‘Young Persons’ category, the children of Thornhill Primary School, Cardiff, have been shortlisted for their Armistice Cantata, the musical they wrote to commemorate the end of the First World War, while the pupils of Ysgol Dyffryn Aman, Carmarthenshire have been shortlisted for their research honouring former pupils who had lost their lives in the same war, and the Unloved Heritage — Ceredigion Heritage Youth Panel have recorded the history of Llawrcwmbach, a traditional upland farmhouse. 

The shortlist for Apprentice or Craftsperson award includes Rachael Cochrane and Liam Davies for their work restoring the Brynich Aqueduct over the River Usk on the Monmouth and Brecon Canal; Matthew Roberts and Brett Burnell, for their work on the construction at St Fagans of Llys Llywelyn, a reconstructed medieval hall based on the excavated remains of Prince Llywelyn’s hall at Llys Rhosyr near Newborough on Anglesey; and Hugh Haley, furniture conservationist, for his work restoring the war poet Hedd Wyn's collection of bardic chairs, including Y Gadair Ddu (The Black Chair).

In the research category the shortlist includes the Discovering Old Welsh Houses group, whose volunteers is transforming our knowledge of medieval Welsh houses; The Lost World of the Welsh Chapel project, which has made a photographic record of some 5,000 chapels; and Archif Menywod Cymru / Women’s Archive Wales, a rich archive of items relating to women’s history, including the experiences of women who worked in the manufacturing industries from 1945 to 1975.

The three shortlisted building restoration projects (under £5m) are Yr Ysgwrn, the home of the renowned Welsh poet, Ellis Humphrey Evans, better known by his bardic name, Hedd Wyn; Insole Court, the former home of one of Cardiff’s great coal-merchant families, saved by community effort; and Plas Kynaston, a Georgian house in the County Borough of Wrexham, now providing low-cost single bedroom apartments to meet local housing needs.

In the over £5m category the contenders for the award are the £30m redevelopment of Wales’s open-air Welsh history museum at St Fagans, Swansea’s Glynn Vivian Art Gallery and Cardigan Castle.

The winners in each category will be announced at the awards ceremony in Caerphilly Castle on Thursday 8 November. The five winners in each category will then be invited to the London awards ceremony on 27 November when an overall winner will be chosen from all the Angel Award winners in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

Andrew Lloyd Webber said, ‘I applaud everyone who enters the Angel Awards and showcases the marvellous work they are doing to rescue and sustain our heritage’, while Baroness Andrews said, ‘The judges had a very difficult task picking just three in each category because of the passion, skill and commitment shown by all of the people and projects nominated for an award’.