What's On

Exhibition 2019


This exhibition is a celebration of Bangor University’s substantial contribution to scholarship in the field of Welsh and Celtic studies and it also aims to commemorate some of the remarkable individuals who contributed to that endeavour.

Although the University College of North Wales opened its doors at Bangor in 1884, it was not until 1889 that John Morris-Jones was appointed a lecturer in Welsh. But the beginnings were quite unremarkable. His opening lecture was only attended by six College officers, two students and two strangers. The growth of the discipline was further hampered by the fact that Bangor prepared its students for the external degrees of the University of London, which did not recognize neither Welsh nor Celtic as degree subjects. With the granting of a Royal Charter to the University of Wales in 1893, and the appointment of Morris-Jones as Professor of Welsh Language in 1895, the status of his discipline was soon transformed. From that time onwards, Bangor became one of the main centres of Welsh scholarship. Bangor has also been fortunate in the manuscript and printed collections of its library, and this exhibition, in its entirety, bears witness to the richness and wide-ranging nature of those collections in the field of Welsh and Celtic.

This exhibition has been arranged to coincide with the visit of the XVIth International Congress of Celtic Studies to Bangor University on 22–26 July 2019. The Congress is the foremost international gathering of scholars researching the languages, literatures and cultural traditions of the Celtic-speaking peoples. Held once every four years, this will be its first visit to Bangor. 

Archives and Special Collections Annual Lecture 2019


The annual lecture this year will be based around the research work conducted by Dr Gareth Huws around the Penrhos estate papers (Holyhead) held ar Bangor University Archives.

The guest speaker will concentrate on three generations of the Stanley family who lived at Penrhos, Holyhead between 1760 and 1880. It will show that the study of a single family can contribute to the wider historical understanding of semi-rural Wales during the ‘long’ nineteenth century. Integral to this understanding is the central, and largely uncredited, role played by the women of the family. The lecture will also investigate whether the joining by marriage of two estates can be considered an amalgamation of equals or an appropriation of one estate by another.

The event will take place on the 9th of October 2019 at 5.30pm in the Main Arts Lecture Theatre under the title, "Penrhos : Powerful women and the curious tale of a Knight, a Lord and an Honourable".


Gareth Huws graduated in Biochemistry from the University of Liverpool and moved to the University in Bangor to train as a teacher. He was appointed Head of Faculty of Mathematics and Science as well as Head of Chemistry in Anglesey, and during that time he returned to the University at Bangor to study for a Master’s degree in Education. More recently he was awarded his doctorate from the University of Aberystwyth for his research into ‘Migration and the growth of Welsh towns during the nineteenth century: a study of Holyhead, 1840-1880’. He is particularly interested in the ‘long’ nineteenth century and the social, linguistic and religious changes in Wales during that time.



Open Day - 25 October 2019

The Archives and Special Collections will be taking part in the History Festival at Bangor University, 25-26 October 2019, by arranging an open day to encourage new visitors to explore our wonderful collections.

This popular event is open to all, and is a chance for anyone with an interest to view some of our manuscripts, archives and rare books and chat to our staff in an informal setting.

Held in the Archives and Special Collections in the Main Arts Building on Friday the 25th of October between 11.30am and 3.30pm, this year’s subjects on display include :

  • Treasures of print : highlights from our rare book collections
  • A Hard Day’s Night : an insight into the life and work of Alun Owen, actor and screenwriter
  • Marvellous map makers : a selection of maps and surveys from our estate collections
  • A local historian : a look at R.T. Pritchard’s collection on the history of Bangor
  • Student voices : an opportunity to look at some student magazines


We look forward to seeing you there!


Explore your Archive week - November 2019

During Explore Your Archive week this year we will be running a series of workshops in the Education Room of the Archives. The workshops will be aimed at Bangor University students, to encourage them to use the Archives, but external users are also welcome. Further information will follow.