The Honourable Society of Cymmrodorion

Recognising the contribution of Wales in contemporary society

Talks & Articles

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Belgian refugee musicians in mid-Wales during the First World War

When Germany invaded Belgium in 1914, more than a million Belgians fled their homes and around 100,000 sought refuge in Britain. The Davies family of Llandinam assisted several families to come to Mid Wales and the artist members of this expatriate community were the subject of a major exhibition at National Museum Cardiff and Ghent’s Museum of Fine Arts in 2003.

Their musician colleagues were equally distinguished, yet their lives and careers are now almost entirely forgotten. Drawing on original sources in the UK and Belgium and offering powerful parallels with the migration crises of today, this lecture reconstructs a remarkable lost narrative and presents it in London for the first time.

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