Welsh Language Promotion Strategy 2023 - 28

Foundations: The work achieved in the first Strategy

In the process of drafting the Carmarthenshire Promotion Strategy 2016-2021, regular meetings of the Welsh Language County Strategic Forum were established to assist the local authority in planning, implementing, and scrutinising the Strategy.

The significant work of the Mentrau as well as the other bodie promoting Welsh within the county was recognised as the backbone of the Strategy. Then, during the five-year period, 10 meetings were held looking at an area of work for development at each meeting. At each meeting, there were presentations from county council officials and key representatives working in the areas covered. Following the discussions, new action points were formulated for the work area.

The actions were laid out in an Action Plan which was updated on a meeting-by-meeting basis. The Action Plan remained a live document throughout the period. In between Forum meetings, meetings were held with various departments within the Council to plan for the Welsh language in preparation to present to the Forum and then following the meeting to propose and commit to new actions.

In September 2019, Meri Huws started to chair the Forum’s quarterly meetings, providing stability and astute guidance to the discussions and co-planning. Inevitably, the content of the schedule had to be revised due to Covid-19. The lockdown had hit a large number of service providers and community activity, and scrutiny on some areas had to be delayed as a result. The meetings were not suspended, however. We transitioned straight to a digital platform without losing any of the momentum or commitment of the members.

The objectives identified for the strategy were:

    1. Welsh language Skills Acquisition
    2. Increasing confidence and use
    3. Affecting population movements
    4. Geographical areas of priority
    5. Marketing and Promotion.


The areas of work that were recognized for reaching these objectives and provided a focal point for the implementation of the Action Plan and for forum meetings were:

  • Preschool
  • Welsh for Adults and Welsh in the Workplace
  • Leisure
  • Youth
  • Housing
  • Planning and assimilating newcomers (and the Moving Rural Carmarthenshire Forward report)
  • Regeneration
  • Private sector
  • Young people and the world of work
  • Geographical areas of priority


A detailed report was produced to take stock of the impact of the Strategy in 2022 and came to the following conclusions on progress and lack of progress against the objectives.

Good Progress Lack of Progress
Promoting Welsh in childcare, language transmission and education: the creation of resources Insufficient ownership of the promotional resources and no effective and consistent processes to distribute them
Increasing number of Welsh-medium private nurseries Childcare/pre-school provision. Progress of Welsh medium locations stopped, difficulties in recruiting
Advances in Welsh for Adults learning, including online teaching, the National Centre collecting useful data and a joint online prospectus enabling messaging to be more effective and access to lessons smoother Numbers of adult Welsh learners living in Carmarthenshire relatively low following Covid-19
A good provision of Welsh courses for teachers and expertise in intensive provision from UWTSD Insufficient joint planning between community adult learning provision and Welsh language promotion to reinforce the Welsh in Education Strategic Plan (WESP) targets
A good and more cohesive provision of informal opportunities for learners Not enough of our teachers taking advantage of the learning provision available
Public body policies encourage the development of Welsh language skills in the workplace. Diverse and purposeful provision of Welsh courses in the workplaces. Efforts to collectively promote informal provision not having a positive effect on numbers
Coleg Sir Gâr increased the number of courses students can take through the medium of Welsh. Collaboration between Coleg Sir Gâr and the University on developing pathways from further to higher study through the medium of Welsh. Not enough progress in increasing Welsh language skills in the workplace
  Lack of data on Carmarthenshire young residents in higher and further education studying through the medium of Welsh
Good Progress Lack of Progress
The Mentrau have adapted their ways of operating to respond to the Pandemic situation. Flexibility and resilience in community delivery bodies, e.g., YFC Impact of the pandemic on Urdd membership
Impact of the pandemic on all organisations providing events for the public
Canolfan Yr Egin is an attractive place to congregate, interact and use Welsh Impact of the pandemic on the Atom’s activity
The establishing of a contemporary, central and viable new Centre in Llandeilo as a natural space for Welsh language use The impact of the pandemic and staffing issues on the provision of Menter Gwendraeth Elli, particularly in Llanelli
Informal opportunities to use Welsh in county council and other workforces A lack of progress in administrating through the medium of Welsh, to create workplaces where the use of Welsh is natural, which allows people to maintain their confidence in their Welsh language skills
Efforts made within leisure, with Theatrau Sir Gâr offering much more Welsh language provision and the county’s leisure centres and indoor markets playing Welsh music Efforts to find ways of jointly promoting Welsh-language community activities have faded
  The development of the capacity of swimming tutors to provide in Welsh and bilingually not resulted in an adequate increase in provision of Welsh swimming lessons. A system that offers and delivers Welsh lessons consistently has not been successfully established
  The work of Language leaders within the departments of our public bodies has not developed further
Good Progress Lack of Progress
Design and publish the language awareness leaflet, ‘Croeso i Sir Gâr’ Lack of use of the leaflet
The coordination of language planning and economic development efforts initiated. A strong start in terms of linguistic expectations and opportunities at Pentre Awel. Difficulties recruiting Welsh speakers into the workforce. Young people don’t appreciate the benefit of their Welsh language skills for the workplace.
Housing policies and actions increasing the provision of affordable housing, engaging local people to housing provision and reducing the number of empty houses in the county creating favourable conditions for local residents to remain in the county. The Ten Towns project not always maximising the opportunities to develop the Welsh language while developing the economy
Language planning work within the LDP process, particularly the development of a new methodology to measure the impact of land use on the Welsh language Lack of national guidance and dependable information on the impact of construction on the Welsh language in terms of numbers of permitted locations for house building and their geographical locations.
Strengthen Council’s policy for naming houses and streets. Lack of cohesion (or lead body) of efforts to prepare the county’s young people into the world of work and persuade them to use and develop their language skills for use in the workplace and encourage them to develop careers in areas where Welsh speakers are needed in the workforce within the county
Establishment and expansion of the Profi project by MGSG. Lack of Welsh-medium provision within the study and accreditation elements of apprenticeships
Establish the provision of the Urdd’s and Meithrin’s Welsh-medium apprenticeships and in childcare, sport, and outdoor pursuits Lack of workplaces that provide and promote Welshmedium apprenticeships
Work to improve the provision of Welsh-medium apprenticeships in the county initiated. Lack of a lead body to co-ordinate efforts to improve the position of Welsh-medium apprenticeships in the county.
Coleg Sir Gâr’s efforts to build young people’s confidence in their Welsh skills within areas of study that lead to work where Welsh language skills are particularly necessary. Funding Local Hello Blod Officers came to an end.

The design and publishing of the e-resource ‘Welsh in Business’, and distributed through projects such as those of Menter a Busnes.

Implementation of a number of specific projects to increase the use of Welsh in the private sector

Economic development funding cascaded to specific projects to promote the Welsh language.  
Good Progress Lack of progress
Attracting funding to pilot a project in the Priority Areas Short duration of pilot project
The three Menter collaborating on project delivery and reporting Difficulty of capacity of Mentrau to work both myopically in specific areas and also provide activity across the area
  Lack of flexibility of national Welsh language promotion bodies to respond to county requirements due to national plans and targets
  Focus on areas specific enough to instigate change
The initial work of Developing the Welsh Language in Llanelli: an effort to operate with a solid evidence base and act strategically and in partnership  
Good Progress Lack of progress
All the new Welsh language promotion resources created and shared Lack of an effective system to distribute and use the resources created
Some good examples of distributing the materials Lack of specific campaigns for promoting Welsh
The dedication of all forum bodies to organising activity on national days for the promotion of the Welsh language Lack of influence on external bodies to distribute Welsh language promotional materials
Efforts to create channels to share promotional resources Some bodies still miss out on opportunities to distribute resources created by other organisations

It must be recognised that there has also been significant work and progress made since the end of the last Strategy period, particularly in the community provision in the Llanelli area, and in the re-establishment of comprehensive provision to support children and young people’s use of Welsh outside of formal education after COVID-19.

Effective partnership work has also been undertaken to increase the involvement of county residents at the Carmarthenshire Urdd Eisteddfod 2023. This work will be reflected and developed in this Promotion Strategy 2023-2028.

The Forum also attempted to influence the above areas of work by raising issues with other bodies, to try to make an impact on the elements of policy that were outside the reach of the bodies on the county forum at county level. Correspondence has been shared with the Government and the Welsh Language Commissioner about Welsh-medium apprenticeships, about the consultation procedures of the Welsh in education Strategic Plans, about advertising regulations and, more recently, the Carmarthenshire Public Service Board was corresponded with about the Welsh language in the draft Well-being Plan. The Forum has matured and now seeks to influence issues affecting the Welsh language at a strategic level and will continue to do this in the Promotion Strategy 2023-28, as issues arise.