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  • St. Davids Day - Honouring Wales' Patron Saint

    St Davids Day 2024

    When is St Davids Day?

    St David, or Dewi Sant in Welsh, is the Patron Saint of Wales. From the 18th century onwards, St David’s Day, 1st March became a National Day of Celebration in Wales.  In 2024 St. David's Day is Friday 1st March.

    St David has a Cathedral and a city named after him and it is the smallest city in Britain with an estimated population of 1750, according to the UK Census 2021. St Davids City is in Pembrokeshire on the western tip of Wales. 

    St Davids Day 2024. St David's City in Pembroke, Wales
    St Davids Day 2024 in St Davids. Celebrated 1st March each year - more about Wales articles, click here...


    St Davids Day and Other Celebration Days in Wales


    St David's Day Essentials

    • When is St Davids Day - 1st March each year
    • When was St David bornThe exact date of his birth is unknown, but popular belief is that he was born around the year 500. Story has it that he was born on a Pembrokeshire cliff during a thunderstorm. His birthplace is marked by the ruins of Non's chapel and a nearby holy well is said to have healing powers. 
    • Why does Wales celebrate St David's Day - St David was the Patron Saint of Wales who died on 1st March 589 AD. It is Wales' own day in the annual calendar. However, it wasn’t until the 18th century that St David’s Day became a National Day of Celebration in Wales.
    • Is St Davids Day a Bank Holiday in Wales or the UK - currently (January 2024) it is not a bank holiday in Wales. It is however a subject of much debate and lobbying of politicians.
    • What do daffodils and leeks have to do with the St David's Day celebrations - The daffodil and Leek are both national symbols of Wales and you’ll see them being displayed, or worn on St Davids Day as a sign of national pride and celebration. The leek is the national emblem of Wales and according to legend was created by St David himself, who ordered Welsh soldiers to wear them on their helmets during battle. 
    • What is Happy St David's Day in Welsh - Dydd Gwyl Dewi Hapus
    • What is St David, the city, in Welsh - Ty Ddewi
    • What happens on St David's Day - In the capital city of Wales, Cardiff, a National St Davids Day parade is held with lots of exciting performances by dragons and theatre groups. Nowadays St Davids Day is celebrated the world over.

    St David - Patron Saint of Wales History

    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 Davids 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 National St David's Day parade is held every year.

    St David's Day in the USA

    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.

    St Davids Day Flag

    Whilst many people mark St Davids Day on 1 March by wearing a leek or a daffodil, it is becoming increasingly popular to fly the flag of St David (next to the famous Welsh Dragon flag), which features a yellow cross on a black background.

    St Davids Day Flag - St David's Day - Patron Saint of Wales

    Celebrating St David’s Day, in St Davids City

    St David’s or Ty Ddewi is the smallest city in the UK with an estimated population of 1,600. It is the home of the world-famous St David's Cathedral. St Davids 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. On St Davids Day 2024, celebrations will not be done by half and not just on one day but consist of a whole array of different and varied events.

    The main event is of course on St Davids Day itself with formal messages being sent to the Senedd (the Welsh Parliament), the Bishops Blessing, playing of the National Anthem, full peal of bell ringing and the various cathedral services. During the celebrations there are many and varied events ranging from the best dressed shop window and best St David's Day 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.

    Oriel y Parc in St Davids City

    Oriel y Parc is home to a Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Visitor Centre and a Gallery exhibiting the collections of Amgueddfa Cymru-National Museum. Many St Davids Days celebrations revolve around Oriel y Parc including the school pupils and community members showcasing their dazzling dragons on a walk down the high street. 

    Oriel y Parc - St Davids City


    On St David’s Day, celebrations take place in Wales and the world over on 1st March each year. But if you want to be at the very heart of St Davids Day celebrations, then the tiny city of St David’s itself is the place to visit.

    St Davids Day Parades. St Davids City in Pembrokeshire

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    Last updated 1st March 2024

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