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February 26, 2019 3 min read

Celebrating St David’s Day in St David’s

St David's Day Essentials

Question Answer
Why does Wales celebrate St David's Day? St David was the Patron Saint of Wales who dies on 1st March 589AD. It is Wales' own day in the annual calendar.
What do daffodils have to do with the St David's Day celebrations? In current times, traditional festivities include the wearing daffodils and leeks, recognised symbols of Wales and Saint David respectively.
What is Happy St David's Day in Welsh? Dydd Gwyl Dewi hapus
What happens on St David's Day? In the capital city of Wales, Cardiff, a National St David's Day parade is held with lots of exciting performances by dragons and theatre groups. Nowadays St David’s Day is not just celebrated the world over.
What happens in St Davids city itself? St David’s or Ty Ddewi is the smallest city in the UK with an estimated population of 1,800. Celebrations are not done by half and not just on one day but consist of varied events, usually spread over a two-week period.

 

Background

St David is the Patron Saint of Wales and on 1st March each year is the feast day of Saint David, which commemorates the anniversary of Saint David's death in 589 AD. The feast has been regularly celebrated since the canonisation of David in the 12th century (by Pope Callixtus II), though it is not a national holiday in Wales or in the UK. The lack of a national holiday in Wales, when there are equivalents in Scotland and Ireland is a source of much disappointment despite overwhelming public support.

 

Worldwide Celebrations of St David’s Day

In current times, traditional festivities include the wearing daffodils and leeks, recognised symbols of Wales and Saint David respectively and grand parades in major towns and cities in Wales. In the capital city of Wales, Cardiff, a St David's Day in the USANational St David's Day parade is held every year, with lots of exciting performances by dragons and theatre groups. Nowadays St David’s Day is not just celebrated in Wales but the world over. If you search on the internet for “St David’s Society”, you will find them worldwide. However perhaps the most poignant celebrations are in the tiny city of St David’s itself.

Celebrating St David’s Day, in St David’s

St David’s or Ty Ddewi is the smallest city in the UK with an estimated population of 1,800. St David’s was granted city status as long ago as in the 16th century, but that status was lost in 1886. It wasn’t until 1994 that city status was rightfully restored to St David’s and once again became the smallest city in the UK. Here in St David’s, celebrations are not done by half and not just on one day but consist of a whole array of different and varied events, usually spread over a two-week period as opposed to one day.

The main event is of course on St David’s Day itself with formal messages being sent to the Sennedd (the Welsh Parliament), the Bishops Blessing, playing of the National Anthem, full peal of bell ringing and the various cathedral services. During the two-week celebration there are many and varied events ranging from the best dressed shop window and best Cawl competitions, to a half marathon on the Pembrokeshire coastal path. Being Wales, there’s rugby, a mini rugby competition at the rugby club and vintage motor bike parades. The full range of events are listed on the website http://stdavidsinfo.org.uk/.

St David's Day ParadesSt David’s Day celebrations take place in Wales and the world over on 1st March each year. But if you want to witness how the celebrations are organised over a two-week period, then the tiny city of St David’s itself is the place to visit.

 


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