North West Wales

1898 Blaenau Ffestiniog eisteddfod crown found on eBay

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Media captionDr Melinda Price, originally from Blaenau, bought the "tiara" for £250 after realising its significance

A crown awarded to a poet at a Welsh cultural festival in Blaenau Ffestiniog 116 years ago is being returned to the town after being spotted for sale on auction website eBay.

Dr Melinda Price, originally from Blaenau, bought the "tiara" for £250 after realising its significance.

A bardic chair - also a feature of the 1898 National Eisteddfod ceremony - is still used in the town council chamber.

And both will be reunited for the first time since that ceremony on Thursday.

"I want to give it back to Blaenau Ffestiniog so other people can appreciate it," said Dr Price, who works for the British Army in Germany.

She explained that she recognised it was a bardic crown rather than a tiara.

"And when I zoomed in and saw that it actually said 'the crowned bard Blaenau Ffestiniog 1898' on it I couldn't believe my eyes," she said.

The chair, which was won by local poet Robert Hughes, has been in the Blaenau Ffestiniog Town Council Chamber for many years and is still used by the chairman at meetings.

Image caption The chair, used in the Chairing of the Bard ceremony, at the same festival is still in use in the town council

But no one knew of the whereabouts of the crown which was won by Rev R Gwylfa Roberts from Portdinorwig until it was spotted by Dr Price.

She came on it by chance when the Bristol-based seller offered it for sale online although she does not know how it ended up there.

Dr Price is due to present the crown to the people of Blaenau in a ceremony at the town council chamber.

The next annual National Eisteddfod takes place in Llanelli, Carmarthenshire, from 1 August.

Image caption The historical bardic chair and crown will be reunited at a special ceremony on Thursday

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