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Authority record

Mid-Wales Development Corporation

  • Corporate body
  • 1965-1977

The Mid-Wales Development Corporation was established under the terms of the New Towns Act 1965 to reverse the trend of depopulation in rural Wales by doubling the population of Newtown. This was to be achieved by attracting people to the area through a programme of domestic and commercial construction. It worked initially in conjunction with the Mid-Wales Industrial Association which had been established in 1957 to attract industry to the region. The Association was dissolved in 1973 as a consequence of local government re-organisation. The MWDC was itself dissolved in 1977 and its responsibilities assumed by the Development Board for Rural Wales.

Development Board for Rural Wales

  • Corporate body
  • 1976-1998

The Development Board for Rural Wales (Bwrdd Datblygu Cymru Wledig) was a Non-Departmental Public Body whose sponsor department was the Welsh Office. It was established by the Development of Rural Wales Act 1976 and came into operation on 1 April 1977. The Board was responsible for an area comprising the counties of Powys and Ceredigion and the pre-1996 district of Meironnydd in Gwynedd. The general function of the Board was to undertake measures for the economic and social development of the area through a policy of job creation, land development, house building and sponsoring economic and industrial development. It also actively marketed the region. It was also responsible for the continuing development of Newtown, Powys, formerly administered by the Mid-Wales Development Corporation. The Board comprised a Chairman and twelve members. It met on a monthly basis to determine policy, which was executed through a number of Member Committees. Historically the budget was derived from two sources: the National Loans Fund, which formerly funded the development of Newtown, including housing activities, and the Grant-in-aid, which prior to 1996 funded the activities outside Newtown and since 1996 funded everything except housing activities. These activities included the development of industrial sites and factory construction, business development, research, promotion, grants to public bodies, and private, community and voluntary organisations for economic and social development. In October 1998 the DBRW and the Land Authority for Wales were merged with the Welsh Development Agency

Griffith, Llewelyn Wyn, 1890-1977

  • n 83142985
  • Person
  • 1890-1977

Llewelyn Wyn Griffith (1890-1977) was a novelist, poet and translator. He was also a noted broadcaster and wrote extensively on Wales and Welsh culture.
He was born, 30 August 1890, in Glanwydden, Conwy, the eldest son of John Griffith (1863-1933), later of Dolgellau. Most of his schooling took place at Blaenau Ffestiniog and Dolgellau. In 1909 he entered the Inland Revenue Department as Assistant Surveyor of Taxes in Liverpool.
He enlisted in the Royal Welsh Fusiliers in September 1914, was gazetted Second Lieutenant in January 1915 and Captain in December 1915. He served in France and Belgium between 1915 and 1919 and was awarded the OBE(Mil) and Croix de Guerre for his services.
On demobilization in 1919 he resumed his duties as an Inspector of Taxes in Liverpool, Chester and London. In 1942 he was appointed Public Relations Officer to the Board of Inland Revenue and began broadcasting on Income Tax. From 1945 to 1952 he was Assistant Secretary and Director of Training in the Department.
He held office with many literary bodies. A prominent member of the Honourable Society of Cymmrodorion, he was appointed Honorary Editor of the Society's publications in 1935 and awarded the Cymmrodorion medal in 1970. He was chairman of the Welsh Committee of the Arts Council from 1949 to 1956 and subsequently vice-chairman of the Arts Council of Great Britain. A noted and frequent broadcaster in both Welsh and English, he was also, for many years, a member of the Welsh team in the Round Britain Quiz. He received an honorary degree of DLitt from the University of Wales and in 1961 was made a CBE.
His experiences as a Captain during the First World War are recounted in Up to Mametz (1931), and a second autobiographical work, Spring of Youth (1935), describes his boyhood and the Welsh tradition which sustained him throughout his life as a public servant in England. He published two novels, The Wooden Spoon (1937) and The Way Lies West (1945), as well as a volume of poetry, The Barren Tree (1945), and a book for children, The Adventures of Pryderi (1962). Among his books which were intended to interpret Welsh culture to the English reader were The Welsh (1950) and his translations from the work of Kate Roberts, including Tea in the Heather (1968) and The Living Sleep (1976).
He studied 16th and 17th century viol music under Arnold Dolmetsch and started the Early Welsh Music Society to interpret, perform and record the early Welsh harp music in the British Museum manuscripts.
He married Winifred Elizabeth Frimston in 1915 and had two sons - John Frimston Wyn Griffith, born in 1919 and killed in action, 1942; and Hugh Alan Wyn Griffith, born 1925. Llewelyn Wyn Griffith died 27 September 1977.

Hill, Greg, 1949-

  • n 84127688
  • Person
  • 1949-

Born in London in 1949, the poet, writer, and editor Greg Hill came to live in Wales in the mid-1970s, graduating from the University College of Wales, Aberystwyth, and becoming a fluent Welsh speaker and writer. Hill became Reviews Editor at the poetry and literary journal the ‘Anglo-Welsh Review’ in 1979, taking over the editorship from Gillian Clarke in 1985 until the title ceased publication in 1988, and from 1989-1992 he was a managing editor of the journal Materion Dwyieithog/Bilingual Matters, published by the Media Studies Group at the College of Further Education, Aberystwyth, where he worked as a lecturer and later Head of General Education. His work, including poetry, essays, reviews, and translations, has been published in a number of Welsh-interest literary publications including Planet, Poetry Wales, Scintilla, New Welsh Review, Red Poets, Llais Llyfrau, Anglo-Welsh Review, Ariel, Agenda, and Critical Survey. Additionally, Hill has contributed his poetry and prose to a number of publications, such as Writers of Wales: Llewelyn Wyn Griffith (Cardiff: University of Wales Press on behalf of the Welsh Arts Council, 1984); ‘Aquiring an Inheritance’, in Discovering Welshness, ed. Fiona Bowie and Oliver Davies (Llandysul: Gomer, 1992); ‘A Oes Golau yn y Gwyll? Alun Llywelyn-Williams ac Alun Lewis’, in Diffinio Dwy Lenyddiaeth Cymru, ed. M. Wynn Thomas (Cardiff: University of Wales Press, 1995); Birdsong, ed. Dewi Roberts (Bridgend: Seren, 2002); and The Dancing Pilgrimage of Water: Writings on the Rivers, Lakes and Reservoirs of Wales, ed. Dewi Roberts (Llanrwst: Gwasg Carreg Gwalch, 2010). Greg Hill became a member of Yr Academi Gymreig/The Welsh Academy in 1988.

Griffiths, James, 1890-1975

  • no 91016711
  • Person

James Griffiths (1890-1975), trade union leader and MP, became the first Secretary of State for Wales. He was born in Betws, Carmarthenshire, on 19 September 1890, the youngest of ten children who also included the poet David Rees Griffiths (Amanwy, 1882-1953). Educated at Betws Board School, he left at the age of 13 to work at Ammanford No. 1 colliery (Gwaith Isa'r Betws), where he eventually became Lodge Secretary. He continued his education by attending night school. At work he became involved with the socialist movement, and helped establish a branch of the Independent Labour Party in Ammanford in 1908, soon becoming its secretary. He was also the secretary of the newly formed Ammanford Trades Council, 1916-1919. As a pacifist, he opposed World War One, and while campaigning on this issue, he met Winifred Rutley, who became his wife in 1918. He won a scholarship to the Central Labour College, London, 1919-1921. On returning home he worked as Llanelli Labour Party agent, 1922-1925, an agent for the Anthracite Miners' Association, 1925-1936, and President of the South Wales Miners' Federation ('the Fed'), 1934-1936. In 1936, he was elected Labour MP for Llanelli, joining the National Executive in 1939. Following World War Two he was made Minister for National Insurance by Attlee, 1945-1950. In this capacity he introduced Family Allowances, a new Industrial Injuries Act, and the National Insurance Act 1948. He was also Chairman of the Labour Party, 1948-1949. He became Secretary of State for the Colonies in 1950. Within two years however the Labour Party was out of office. During the long period in opposition he was deputy leader of the Labour Party, 1955-1959, and spokesman on Welsh affairs. Having campaigned for a Secretary of State for Wales since the 1930s, Harold Wilson appointed him the first Secretary of State for Wales following Labour's 1964 General Election victory. He held the post until 1966. He published an autobiography, Pages From Memory (London: Dent, 1969), and retired from Parliament in 1970. He had two sons and two daughters. He died in Teddington, Richmond upon Thames, London, on 7 August 1975, aged 84, and was buried at the Christian Temple in Ammanford. He corresponded with Mary Silyn Roberts (née Parry), who was involved with Coleg Harlech in its early days.

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