Keep the Cofiwch Dryweryn Mural - Nantyffyllon - Cadwch Ein Murlun

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Cymraeg isod/ Welsh below

There is a mural on a wall in Llanrhystud that pays remembrance to the Capel Celyn community in the Tryweryn valley, which was flooded in 1965 in order to create a resevoir to provide water for locations in England - Cofiwch Dryweryn. The wall was vandalised in 2019, causing many people across the country to paint replica murals in an act of remembrance and support. We painted one such remembrance on a wall of a private property in Nantyffyllon, Maesteg. 

We received a letter from Bridgend County Borough Council stating that we hadn't applied for consent or planning permission for our “advertisement”, but stating that should we apply retrospectively, it would probably be granted. We refused on the grounds that it is a mural, a piece of art, and not an advertisement; a remembrance of history, not an advert of tourism or consumerism. 
(Further to this point, we would like to draw attention to the fact that Banksy painted a mural - arguably more political - on private property in the neighbouring borough of Neath Port Talbot, without permission, and subsequent visitors caused delays on roads and dangerous parking and crossing situations for residents, but this was protected with security guards and ultimately a protective wall without any letters sent to the owner of the property about advertisement).

 In August 2019, we decided to add dragons to the mural, in homage to the cultural importance of dragons within Welsh folklore, leaning on the tales within the Mabinogion. The homeowner holds the right to paint their house with whatever colours they please - aesthetically speaking, this is merely an addition of two blocks of colour to an existing mural. 

In September 2019, the council issued another letter, this time shifting the goalposts from planning consent, stating that it is the opinion of the Highway Department that the mural is now a danger to motorists. They've issued another letter recently - July 2020 - stating that if it is not painted over within 21 days, then we are liable for prosecution. It is our opinion that the mural is large enough to be seen from such a distance that it poses no danger to motorists; it does not demand significant attention to process visually and contains no information that needs to be read and absorbed.

 Advertising on roundabouts, flyovers, bridges, railings is allowed, so it seems that danger of distraction is only an issue if you haven't paid the council for it to not be so. Also, if a large wall painting is deemed as a significant dangerous distraction, then we raise the point that Christmas decorations on the exterior of houses; political placards on railings and in front gardens; pubs, club and restaurant A-boards also should be at least under investigation by the Highway Department. 

The Highway Department is of the opinion that the mural is a danger (as stated, only since we refused to apply for planning permission), yet they provide no evidence that any accidents happening on that junction are specifically due to drivers being distracted by a large block-coloured mural able to be processed from a distance, and not hampered by the consistently illegally parked cars on a junction nor the bus stop located directly opposite a food takeaway, where people try to overtake impatiently or park at will.

 We are of the opinion that the mural is a vibrant addition to the valley that we love, and that it has opened up conversations and opportunities for learning about Welsh history and Welsh language, which otherwise would not have happened. It is one of the Welsh Government's well-being goals that we have a “Wales of vibrant culture and thriving Welsh language”. We strongly believe that the artwork feeds in to this in our community, and brings interest in and creativity to the conversation and education which has previously been missing from the valley.


Mae murlun ar wal yn Llanrhystud sydd yn coffau cymued Capel Celyn yng nghwm Tryweryn, a foddwyd yn 1965 er mwyn creu llyn i ddarparu dŵr ar gyfer lleoliadau yn Lloegr – Cofiwch Dryweryn. Difrodwyd y wal yn 2019, gan ysgogi pobl ar draws y wlad i beintio murlunau tebyg er cof a chefnogaeth. Fe beintion ni furlun coffa ein hun ar eiddo preifat yn Nantyffyllon, Maesteg.

Derbynion ni lythyr gan Gyngor Bwrdeistref Sirol Pen-y-bont ar Ogwr yn datgan ein bod ni heb ofyn caniatâd cynllunio ar gyfer ein “hysbyseb”, ac y byddwn ni’n derbyn caniatâd ôl-syllol petawn ni’n gofyn amdano. Gorthodon ni, oherwydd murlun, darn o gelfyddyd oedd hwn, nid hysbyseb; cofeb hanes, nid hysbyseb ar gyfer rhyw fath o dwristiaeth neu brynwriaeth.
(Hefyd ar y pwynt hwn, hoffwn dynnu sylw at y ffaith fod Banksy wedi peintio murlun – un y gellid ei ddisgrifio’n fwy wleidyddol na’n murlun ni – ar eiddo preifat ym mwrdeistref Castell Nedd Port Talbot, heb ganiatâd, a bod nifer yr ymwelwyr wedi achosi oedi ar y ffyrdd a pharcio peryglus ar safleoedd croesi ar gyfer brodorion lleol, ond bod hwn wedi’i diogeli gan geidwad a gorchydd heb i berchennog yr eiddo dderbyn llythyrau ynglŷn â hysbysebion).

Y mis Awst 2019, ychwanegon ni ddreigiau at y murlun, gan dalu teyrnged at bwysigrwydd symbolaidd dreigiau yn niwylliant Cymru, gan fenthyg gan chwedlau’r Mabinogion. Mae gan berchennog y tŷ yr hawi i’w pheintio pa liw bynnag y dymuna – o feddwl yn ethetaidd, ychwanegiad dau floc o liw yn unig oedd hyn.

Ym mis Medi 2019, danfonodd y cyngor lythyr ychwanegol, nawr yn dweud taw barn yr adran ffyrdd oedd bod y murlun yn berygl i fodurwyr. Danfonwydd llythyr arall eto yn ddiweddar – Gorffennaf 2020 – yn dweud os na chaiff y murlun ei orchuddio o fewn 21 diwrnod, y byddwn ni’n cael ein herlyn. Ein barn ni yw bod y murlun yn ddigon sylweddol i gael ei weld o bell, ac felly ddim yn berygl i fodurwyr o gwbl; dydy e ddim yn cymryd sylw ormodol i’r brosesu’n weledol, nac yn cynnwys gwybodaeth sydd rhaid ei darllen a’i hamsugno.

Mae hysbysebu ar gylchfannau, trosffyrdd, pontydd a reiliau yn cael eu caniatáu, felly ymddengys bod perygl tynnu sylw modurwyr ond yn broblem pan na chaiff y cyngor ei dalu am iddo beidio â bod. Hefyd, os yw peintiad sylweddol ar wal yn tynnu sylw’n beryglus, rhaid bod yr un peth yn wir am addurniadau nadolig allannol ar dai, placardiau gwleidyddol ar reiliau neu gerddi blaen, ac hysbysebion allannol tafarndai, clybiau a bwytai, a dylai’r rhain i gyd gael eu harchwilio gan yr adran ffyrdd.

Barn yr adran ffyrdd yw bod y murlun yn beryglus (fel y dywedwyd eisioes, dim ond ers i ni wrthod ceisio caniatâd cynllunio), er iddynt beidio â darparu unrhyw tystiolaeth bod unrhyw ddamwain ar y groesfan wedi’i hachosi gan ein murlun, bloc o liw yn y bôn,  yn tynnu sylw modurwyr, yn hytrach na pharcio anghyfreithlon ar y groesfan, neu’r safle bws sydd wedi’i leoli cyferbyn â siop têcawê, neu bobl yn pasio ceir wedi’u parcio’n ddiamynedd.

Ein barn ni yw bod y murlun yn ychwanegiad positif, bywiog i’r cwm ry’n ni’n ei garu, a’i fod wedi dechrau sawl sgwrs a chyfle i ddysgu am hanes ac iaith Cymru, a byddai hyn ddim wedi digwydd fel arall. Un o amcanion lles Llywodrath Cymru yw i greu “Cymru â diwylliant bywiog lle mae’r Gymraeg yn ffynnu”. Ry’n ni’n credu’n gryf bod ein murlun yn gwneud hynny yn ein cymuned, a’i fod yn cyfrannu creadigaeth a diddordeb i drafodaeth addysgiadol yn y cwm.