Additional funding of £100,000 has been made available for the National Eisteddfod for the 2009-10 financial year only. This reflects the particular difficulties faced by the Eisteddfod in generating funds in a rural area such as Meirionydd. This is in addition to the £485,722 which the National Eisteddfod will receive from the Welsh Assembly Government through the Welsh Language Board.
The Urdd will receive £677,029 from the Welsh Language Board. In addition, the Urdd Eisteddfod will receive an additional £150,000 through the agreement which was made with the Welsh Local Government Association (WLGA) in October 2008. Mudiad Ysgolion Meithrin will receive £1.14 million for activities during 2009-2010 from the Welsh Language Board.
The Heritage Minister, said:
The National Eisteddfod, the Urdd and Mudiad Ysgolion Meithrin play a key role in promoting the Welsh language and culture. I’m pleased to be able to make this announcement of extra support for the National Eisteddfod today. It is apparent that unless the Welsh Assembly Government provides additional funding, this year’s 2009 Eisteddfod will face serious financial difficulties and several of its core activities will not take place. Today’s funding will provide greater certainty for this year’s event and I wish the Eisteddfod team well for a successful event in Bala this year.
As well as providing opportunities for children and young people and adults to enjoy activities throughout the medium of Welsh, the three organisations are responsible for bringing thousands of children and young people into contact with the Welsh language for the first time be that through the Urdd activity centres, the stage of an Eisteddfod, the local Welsh language nursery group or a visit by the National Eisteddfod to their area.
Elfed Roberts, Chief Executive of the Eisteddfod, said:
We are delighted with the additional funding which has been offered by the Welsh Assembly Government which will mean that we can continue with the arrangements for 2009 with renewed vigour.
Chair of the Welsh Language Board, Meri Huws, said:
It gives the Board great pleasure every year to share grants to these organisations – the backbone of the Welsh language and culture. We welcome especially this year the Government’s positive response to the difficult circumstances facing the National Eisteddfod in Bala, and we are confident that this extra sum will go a long way in contributing towards creating a successful and cheerful event.
10 March 2009