The involvement of Jan Bailey, who is a community archaeologist from Glamorgan-Gwent Archaeological Trust, has given the Saron Graveyard Project a tremendous boost and is providing exciting opportunities for over 300 young people from Troedyrhiw to explore their heritage. The youth engagement programme which is now well under way is a partnership between the Archaeological Trust, Friends of Saron, Troedyrhiw Community Primary School, Troedyrhiw Scouts and the Willows Youth Club.
All classes from the school have now visited the graveyard in small groups. Although it has been necessary to confine the visits to only a small safe area the children have been extremely interested and enthusiastic. Using this experience as a stimulus they are now following this up by investigating heritage matters in a variety of different ways.
Troedyrhiw Scouts are basing some of their badge work on the creation of heritage based ‘geocache’ trails through the village. They are also carrying out an accurate survey of Saron Graveyard with the aim of producing a detailed site plan which Friends of Saron will use to record burial data.
The Willows Youth Club are hoping to install some artwork, paying all due respect to the sensitivity of the site, on some concrete fence panels at one side of the graveyard. This will take the form of a time line showing something of the history of the village and the chapel. It is intended that historical scenes will be rendered in a subdued palette with a greater range of colours being used to bring the story up to the present time.
Progress reports on these initiatives will be posted on this blog from time-to-time.