What’s special about St David’s Day?
Saint David was born towards the end of the 5th century. He founded a Celtic monastic community at Glyn Rhosyn (The Vale of Roses) on the western headland of Pembrokeshire at the spot where St David’s Cathedral stands today.
The date of Saint David’s death is recorded as 1st of March. The year, however, is uncertain, but it’s thought to be around 601.
That’s round about the same time as the news starts at teatime in Wales. For centuries, March 1st has been a national festival.
Indeed, the 17th-century diarist Samuel Pepys noted how Welsh celebrations in London for Saint David’s Day would spark wider counter-celebrations among their English neighbours and life-sized effigies of Welshmen were symbolically hung.
By the 18th century, the custom had arisen of confectioners producing “taffies”— gingerbread figures baked in the shape of a Welshman riding a goat on Saint David’s Day.
This tradition can often be seen re-enacted in Ammanford on a Saturday night. Happy St David’s Day.