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Heroes and Villains with Rhodri Trefor

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Heroes and Villains with Rhodri Trefor

12th August 2019 - 16th August 2019


Heroes and Villains

This course looks at some of the heroes and villains who are associated with Wales in some way or other.  Some will be familiar names, others unfamiliar and unexpected.  You will have the opportunity to discuss these characters, as one man’s hero is often another man’s villain, and consider some cases which are still controversial today.  All of the stories are true, unique, interesting and some are very cruel.  Everybody’s opinion matters and, on this course, you’ll get to look at both sides of every story before deciding whether the people involved are heroes or villains in your opinion.

One day will be reserved to visit the Beaumaris court and gaol where you will hear many stories before finishing the tour off with more history in the Blac Boi pub in Caernarfon. Here, you’ll have a chance to relax, siarad Cymraeg and enjoy a chat over a nice pint of Welsh beer.

The course will be looking at various characters and asking many questions:

Was Mary Prout responsible for killing her child?

Was there any basis to accuse Gwen Ferch Ellis of being a witch?

Howard Marks succeeded to cheat the system: was he a hero or a villain then?

Was there justice in hanging Ruth Ellis for her ‘crime of passion’?

Why isn’t David Lloyd George, the brilliant politician and founder of the welfare state, remembered as a national hero by everyone?

Catrin of Berrain married four times, but was there something sinister about the deaths of her first three husbands?

Saunders Lewis became a hero for burning the bombing school and his fate of the language speech, but was he also an anti-Semitic fascist?

And finally, what about the Welsh Rugby Union and its relationship with the Welsh language?  Yes, we’ve seen some unbelievable Welsh stars such as Ray Gravelle and Shane Williams but what about other promising players who did not have the same chance?  Why?

At the end of each case, you’ll be the jury who’ll decide whether the characters are guilty or not guilty.


Rhodri Trefor

I’m from Llangefni, Anglesey originally, but have been living in Cardiff for ten years and just moved back to the north, to Caernarfon, recently.  I went to Trinity Collage to study Theatre, Music and Media in 2001, and then worked as an actor for over fifteen years in the theatre in Wales and on S4C.  I went back to university to train to be a teacher in 2016 and then  taught Drama and Welsh at Gartholwg School in Pontypridd.  Whilst there I started teaching Welsh to adults on Skype and enjoyed the experience very much; this is what led me to be a full-time tutor here at Nant Gwrtheyrn.  I have a great interest in anything to do with drama and enjoy going to the theatre very much.  From working as an actor and playing several villains, looking at both sides of every character and each story is something that comes naturally and is of interest to me. This is why I have researched into these cases and have tried to find stories which enable a clear two-sided debate.


12th August 2019
16th August 2019