South East Wales

Cardiff GrandFest held to help preserve older crafts

Grandmasters at the festival Image copyright GrandFest

A festival celebrating older people's crafts has taken place in Cardiff in a bid to ensure the skills are not lost.

GrandFest at St Fagans National Museum of History included workshops on quilting, embroidery, bread making and international dance.

It was hosted by "grandmakers", all aged over 70, and aimed to inspire younger people to discover and learn new skills.

The event was organised by the Royal Voluntary Service.

John Gates, 76, from Maesteg, shared his knowledge of embroidery.

Image copyright Grandfest
Image caption A woman takes part in embroidery at the festival

He said: "Growing up in Maesteg all the women in our street were skilled needlewomen; everyone knew how to mend and make-do and I remember being fascinated watching at my mother's knee.

"In the 1970s as a collier my interest was renewed when I needed something to fill my time. Fifty years later I have researched and learnt different needlework techniques from around the world."

Dian Carol Smith, 70, a master quilter from Morriston, Swansea, said: "Quilting is very useful and once you understand the techniques, you can create beautiful gifts for anyone."

David McCullough, chief executive of Royal Voluntary Service, said its volunteers and the older people it supports "have a wealth of experiences and skills worth sharing which is why GrandFest was conceived".

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