Les Eisteddfods en Galles du Nord

Name of traveller

André Le Sauce (b. 1943)

Reason for travel

  • study trip abroad as holder of a Zellidja Travel Grant

Date of travel

1 July to 15 August 1961

Llangollen offre à tous ses visiteurs un acceuil chaleureux, et, quand arrive la grande semaine, la petite ville est complètement transformée ; car il faut dire que cet Eisteddfod, s’il a réclamé pour sa réalisation des transformations matérielles profondes, est aussi cause d’effets psychologiques. Les habitants ne sont plus les mêmes ; plus souriants, plus hospitaliers, ils respectent cette tradition plus que jamais. (Le Sauce 32)


  • customs:
    • attends the Llangollen International Eisteddfod and the Rhosllanerchrugog National Eisteddfod
    • arrives ten days too early in Llangollen as he has got the date of the Eisteddfod wrong; feels ill at ease and lonely
    • notes on competitors and who won which competition in the International Eisteddfod; likens the general atmosphere in Llangollen during the Eisteddfod to a county fair
    • works as honorary steward during the National Eisteddfod,  but is given free reign to wander about the field
    • emphasises the unique quality of the National Eisteddfod and points out that there is no other gathering of this type in the world or in any of the other Celtic nations
    • very detailed and factual description of the National Eisteddfod, the competitions and events on the field throughout the week
  • language:
    • title of the report written in Welsh on the cover of the volume
    • remarks on the Welsh-only rule in the National Eisteddfod
    • is disappointed that TV and radio journalists lose interest in him after they discover he speaks no Welsh
    • becomes increasingly fed up with the language barrier between himself and the Welsh competitions as he does not understand what is going on
  • people:
    • acts as unofficial interpreter for the francophone Senegalese dance troupe competing in the International Eisteddfod
    • opening speech of the National Eisteddfod is given by Sir Thomas Herbert Parry-Williams (1887-1975)
  • recreation:
    • has some trouble at first finding accommodation in Llangollen, but then is given a pleasant welcome by Mrs Rhys Roberts, the francophone wife of the Eisteddfod president, who helps him find food and lodgings
    • has a brief, ill-fated stay at the youth hostel in Llangollen where he is kicked out after a mention in the Western Mail; eventually finds permanent accommodation in a private home
  • terrain: finds Llangollen a small grey town, but completely transformed by the Eisteddfod

Nationality of traveller

Breton; French

Language of publication


Gender of traveller


Type of publication

report; travelogue


Le Sauce, André. Les Eisteddfods en Galles du Nord. 1961. Rapports de premier voyage Zellidja jusqu'en 1974; 3011. Bibliothèque nationale de France, Paris. MS.