Amgueddfa Cymru — National Museum Wales


Exhibition review by Museum's Youth Forum.

As youth forum members we were able to help input our opinions into the design of the temporary exhibition and have been able to see it develop from a drawing on paper to a physical form. Today we have examined the exhibition and have evaluated the information and items displayed.


The National Museum Wales have been tasked with commemorating the WW1 centenary. Personally, we believe that the exhibition is very interesting as it gives an insight into the medicinal history starting from Ancient Greece right up to the 21st century. We enjoyed the exhibition overall. The video grabbed our attention the most and we were able to see a visual aspect of medicinal practice with a humorous touch.


The exhibition has a number of different displays which hold valuable information about medicine and the different tools used to carry out medical procedures such as amputations. It contains a silent video in both Welsh and English that shows a few medical procedures from the Roman times. There are some replicas of medical items in the display case that have been used such as a Face Mask used in World War One to disguise facial wounds. 


There is also a small game on an iPad that tests your knowledge of the information in the exhibition. This together with the video has proved to be a success with the general public. Some reviews say that they liked “the doctor video” and a young person enjoyed it when the doctor was “cutting the leg off”.


By Joel Powell, Emma Jones and Hannah Sweetapple.

It’s been another busy lambing season down at Llwyn yr Eos – we really hope you’ve enjoyed watching all the action via #lambcam.  This year, as well as welcoming lots of excited visitors to the farm to see our mums and babies, there’s been a couple of new additions to the programme. We ran our first ever Lambing Experience Day Courses and were really pleased to get great feedback that included 'a once in a lifetime experience'! They're something we hope to build on in 2017 - so watch this space!. Our Learning Team also organised lambing tours for schools, with over 600 children visiting (some of whom were lucky enough to witness births happening!).

The lamb-o-meter clocked up 186 at close of play – there’s a few stragglers left to deliver, but we’re on course for a total of 204 births. For those of you who like some stats, here goes…

  • Lambing 204 from 114 ewes gives a lambing percentage of 178% (which is good).
  • The vast majority of those are happy, healthy and with their mothers.
  • But we’ve also lost a few along the way…
    • One set of twins were a late miscarriage.
    • One lamb too premature to survive.
    • 2 failed to thrive and died at a few days old.
    • 2 stillborn.
    • 1 accidentallly smothered by its mother.
  • So far we have ended up with two lambs being bottle fed:
    • One was born very poorly and had to be hand reared from the start.
    • The other was from a set of twins where the mother had mastitis and only had enough milk for one lamb.
    • Both of them are bouncing around happily now.
  • There’s also been a couple of bonuses – two ewes that we thought were carrying singles delivered twins!

So here’s a few of this year’s cutest pictures to keep you going till next year……

Dwi’n siŵr eich bod, fel finna yn dotio gweld yr ŵyn bach adeg hyn o'r flwyddyn, ac wedi bod yn cadw llygaid ar y diweddaraf o'r Sgrinwyna sy'n cofnodi'r genedigaethau ar fferm Llwyn-yr-eos, yma yn Sain Ffagan.

Erbyn heddiw ystyrir cig oen fel ein danteithfwyd cenedlaethol, a dwi’n siŵr y bydd amryw ohonoch yn mwynhau gwledda ar gig oen wedi ei rostio dros Sul y Pasg. Be sy’n syndod yw mai tan yn gymharol ddiweddar, ni fwytawyd llawer o gig oen yma yng Nghymru. Cedwid defaid ar gyfer eu gwlân a’u llefrith, nid ar gyfer eu cig. Dim ond ar achlysuron arbennig y bwytawyd cig oen, gan ei fod yn fwy proffidiol i gneifio a gwerthu gwlân y ddafad.

Wrth chwilota trwy’r archif, prin iawn yw’r ryseitiau sy’n cynnwys cig oen. Ond yr hyn sydd yn rhan o’n traddodiad, ac sy’n profi dadeni ar hyn o bryd yw cig dafad – sef cig o anifail a gedwid rhwng tair a phum mlynedd. Tan y 1940au, roedd cig dafad yn ffefryn ar draws Prydain a’r consensws oedd bod ei flas a’i ansawdd yn rhagori ar gig oen. Wrth deithio o amgylch Cymru ym 1862, fe brofodd George Borrow gig dafad am y tro cyntaf, a bu’n canu ei glodydd:

The leg of mutton of Wales beats the leg of mutton of any other country, and I had never tasted a Welsh leg of mutton before. Certainly I shall never forget that first Welsh leg of mutton which I tasted, rich but delicate, replete with juices derived from the aromatic herbs of the noble Berwyn, cooked to a turn, and weighing just four pounds ... Let anyone who wishes to eat leg of mutton in perfection go to Wales.

           George Burrow Wild Wales: Its People, Language and Scenery, 1862

Felly pam fod cig dafad wedi mwy neu lai diflannu o’n basgedi siopa a’n bwydlenni? Gyda gostyngiad ym mhris gwlân yn ystod degawdau cyntaf y 1900au, roedd yn talu i ffermwyr werthu ŵyn gwrywaidd ar gyfer cig, yn hytrach na’u cadw i roi gwlân. Rhaid cofio hefyd fod cig dafad yn cymryd tipyn yn hirach i'w goginio, felly nid yw'n syndod iddo gael ei ddisodli gan gig oen sy'n yn cymryd chwarter yr amser.

Dros y degawd diwethaf, fodd bynnag, mae cig dafad wedi cynyddu yn ei boblogrwydd unwaith eto, gyda mwy o fwytai, ffermydd, siopau cig a chogyddion enwog yn gwerthu a hyrwyddo'r cig arbennig yma. Er ei fod ar gael drwy’r flwyddyn, mae ar ei orau rhwng mis Hydref a Mawrth. Felly tymor cig oen yw hi ar hyn o bryd, ond erbyn yr Hydref, cofiwch edrych allan am gig dafad yn ei siop cig lleol.

Dyma rysáit o’r archif, mae’r dull o goginio’r pryd hwn yn amrywio, ond dyma fersiwn teulu o Garnfadrun, Llŷn:

         Tatws Popty

          darn o gig dafad




Llenwi gwaelod y tun cig â thatws a nionod, a’u gorchuddio â dŵr.  Rhoi darn mawr o gig eidion neu gig dafad ar wyneb y tatws a rhostio’r cwbl yn y popty.



A century ago, on 22 March 1916, a hospital was opened in the grounds of St Fagans Castle – one of the hundreds of auxiliary hospitals set up by the Red Cross during the First World War.

Before the war the Red Cross had joined with the Order of St John’s to establish the Voluntary Aid Detachment Scheme (VAD). The aim of the scheme was to provide training for volunteers to assist the military hospitals in the event of war. Here, at St Fagans in 1909 the first detachment (VAD) in Wales was established with many others following soon after.

The Countess of Plymouth from St Fagans Castle was the President of the Glamorgan branch of the Red Cross and was instrumental in the progress of the society in the county. It was the Countess and her husband, the Earl of Plymouth, who offered the Castle gardens and grounds for hosting the VAD recruitment and training days. They later gave the Banqueting Hall over to the Red Cross to be used as an auxiliary hospital. The Hall had been originally built to host social and family celebrations but the large building with its extensive gardens was suitable for housing a small hospital.

It was the Plymouth’s who contributed to the majority of the necessary refurbishment. The hospital opened with 30 beds but within a few weeks another 10 beds were added. A year later, in 1917, the hospital had 70 beds including a new extension and sanitary wing.

Most of the nurses in the auxiliary hospitals were volunteers and members of the Red Cross Voluntary Aid Detachment. Each hospital had some professional staff too; a Commandant, a Quartermaster and a Sister-in-Charge. At St Fagans Hospital, most of the women were local, some of whom were in the service of the Plymouth family at the Castle.

Auxiliary hospitals assisted the larger hospitals and didn’t have the facilities to nurse severely injured soldiers. Many of the patients at St Fagans were transferred from the 3rd General Western Hospital in Cardiff, others were sent directly from the front line. We can’t begin to imagine how the soldiers had suffered before coming here to St Fagans. A century on, it brings comfort that this hospital would have once been a haven for many to begin to heal the physical and mental scars of war.

Twitter: #Hospital100 #Ysbyty100


In the early 1970s Museum staff set out to record older and retired farmers describing farming in Wales in the first half of the twentieth century, before the large-scale mechanisation and expansion from the 1950s onwards. The recordings are kept in our Sound Archive.

In April 1977 Earnest Thomas Ruell, then aged 76, was interviewed about sheep farming in Radnorshire, mid-Wales, in the early decades of the twentieth century. Born in 1901, he lived at The Pant farm, Llanfihangel Rhydithon, in the hills north east of Llandrindod Wells.  After marrying in 1924 he farmed at Dolyfelin near Knighton for thirty four years.

In this short compilation of selected clips, Thomas Ruell describes lambing time, speaking in the distinctive accent of Radnorshire, one of the most rural Welsh counties, bordering Herefordshire.

The flock comprised 120 ewes and 4 or 5 rams. The breed of sheep was the local Kerry Hill, regarded as excellent mothers. Lambing took place outside, the only space available under cover was by emptying the wainhouse (cart shed) during heavy snow. Treatments for illnesses were limited and often based on local remedies. The flock producing a lambing figure of 125% was considered a good outcome. Female lambs grew into ewes and were kept for just over two years then sold, during which time they would have produced lambs themselves.

Large sheds allow lambing to be a lot less dependent upon weather conditions and the seasons, often starting as early as January. Here at Llwyn-yr-eos farm our ewes were all undercover well before lambing even began. Most flocks and farms now have to be considerably larger in order to be viable. Treatments for illnesses have advanced considerably, most of which can be applied by farmers themselves. Some similarities remain between lambing in the 1920s and the 1930s and the present, though, and a great deal of time, care and attention from the farmer are still fundamental elements for successful lambing today.