Tuesday 28 September 2021

St Fagan's National Museum of History

Whilst we were staying in Caerleon during our recent trip to Wales, I took a day out to visit the National Museum of (Welsh) History at St Fagan;s near Cardiff. I cannot recommend it strongly enough. There is so much to see there - which really brings Welsh History to life.

Over the last year or so, I've been reading a lot about Welsh history. My favourite general books on the subject are Jon Gower's "The Story of Wales"; John Davies' "A History of Wales" and Gwynfor Evans' "Land of My Fathers".Miranda Alehouse-Green and ray Howell have written an excellent book on "Celtic Wales", and Kari Maund has a useful introduction to the lives and activities of "The Welsh Kings". 

There are a number of other books I have & journals that I use.

The National Museum of History brought these to life.

Some buildings within the site are based on archaeological finds. I was particularly interested in the Llys Llywelyn - based on the Llyn Rhosyr in Ynys Môn (Anglesey) which was excavated in the 1990s. The Bryn Eryr Iron Age Roundhouses are re-creations based on a farmstead in Eastern Ynys Môn. These are modelled on the findings of an excavation done during the 1980s.

Othe buildings have been taken down from their original site - and reconstructed. I visited the church next to the Llys Llywelyn - and was surprised and really thrilled to find that it was the church in the village where my Great Great Grandparents lived in the 19th Century - before the Griffiths' moved to Betws, near Ammanford.

As well as lots of places to visit, there are some excellent indoor exhibitions - and a bookshop with lots of books that I was tempted to buy (and was not able to resist).

The website is https://museum.wales/stfagans/. A map of the museum is available at https://museum.wales/media/52014/Site-Map-of-St-Fagans-National-Museum-of-History_r.pdf.

Further information about individual buildings and displays can be found here.