No One Remembers Pontypridd: The forgotten story of the 1893 National Eisteddfod of Wales by Sheldon Phillips

No One Remembers Pontypridd: The forgotten story of the 1893 National Eisteddfod of Wales by Sheldon Phillips

After 130 years, the mysteries of the 1893 National Eisteddfod in Pontypridd have finally
been unravelled with the publication of a new book ‘No One Remembers Pontypridd: The
forgotten story of the 1893 National Eisteddfod of Wales’ by Sheldon Phillips. Three of the
author’s great uncles were involved in the organisation of the 1893 Eisteddfod, including the
General Secretary, David E. Phillips.
Unusually there was no official report for this National Eisteddfod, so with a foreword from
the current Archdruid of Wales, Myrddin ap Dafydd, this book tells the forgotten and
the fascinating story of Pontypridd’s successful bid for the 1893 National Eisteddfod – beating
the other bidders Neath, Llanelli and CHICAGO! The full story is told from the bidding
process, to delivery of probably the greatest National Eisteddfod of the 19th century, to the
aftermath – and there was an aftermath!

National Eisteddfod

As well as the story of the 1893 National Eisteddfod, the author provides an outline of the
historical development of the National Eisteddfod and an insight into Pontypridd being the
centre of the Neo-Druidism movement. There is the backdrop of life in south Wales at the
time too – social and economic growth but poverty and coal mining tragedy were never far away.
The book is a very attractive publication with some unique images and maps, including
original illustrations of the official opening on Pontypridd’s famous Rocking Stone and the
chairing of the bard ceremony.

Sheldon Phillips said:

“I am delighted to share this enthralling story of the 1893 National
Eisteddfod in Pontypridd and to provide the opportunity for it to be properly remembered. I
also hope I have managed to capture the 1893 Eisteddfod’s spine-tingling atmosphere and
that this inspires everyone to get in involved in Rhondda Cynon Taf 2024.”

Chair of the 2024 Rhondda Cynon Taf National Eisteddfod, Helen Prosser, said, “We very
much hope that the outcome of the 2024 National Eisteddfod will be very different to the
a festival held back in 1893, and our Eisteddfod will long be remembered as one of the best festivals, bringing people of all ages and backgrounds together to celebrate our language and culture in a vibrant, welcoming and inclusive way.

“We’re delighted to be part of this launch, as we celebrate that there are only 500 days to
go before the Eisteddfod opens here in Rhondda Cynon Taf. We congratulate Sheldon
Phillips on his research and book, and look forward to celebrate the launch and success of
such an interesting volume.”

‘No One Remembers Pontypridd’ will be launched at Pontypridd Museum from 530pm-
730pm on Wednesday 22 March 2023. There will be an opportunity to purchase copies of
the book signed by the author during the evening.

For more information on the Rhondda Cynon taf National Eisteddfod, go to


“Essential reading in the run-up to the National Eisteddfod of
Wales, 2024.”(Archdruid Myrddin ap Dafydd)
Launch Venue: Pontypridd Museum, Bridge Street CF37 4PE
Date: Wednesday 22 March 2023, 5.30pm-7.30pm

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