by The Curious Scribbler
Following my recent much-read blog about the vandalism and prompt repainting of the Cofiwch Dryweryn wall near Llanrhystud several readers contributed comments on the familiar Elvis rock just over the Ceredigion border on the A44 at Eisteddfa Gurig which the unknown vandals appeared to be copying.
This too, is a reinstated version of a modified graffiti message. Originally painted on the rock in 1962 it represented electioneering support for Islwyn Ffoulkes Ellis, the Plaid Cymru candidate in a by-election. This being the legal name bestowed upon him at birth in 1924 it was necessarily spelled thus on the electioneering literature and the hoardings. But he was not a successful candidate and is much better known as the Lampeter University academic and prominent Welsh author Islwyn Ffowc Elis.
This historic detail solves a problem which has long perplexed me: How do you find the space to amend Elis to Elvis?
The original ‘Elvis’ has also been destroyed in the interim and has been repainted on a freshly cut face of rock. Now it sports an expansive V wider than the rest of the lettering, as my picture shows.
According to Gwylim writing last month in Ein Gwlad, the original artists of the original ‘Ellis’ were the late film director John Hefin and David Meredith, former Head of Press and PR at HTV and S4C. The original author of Cofiwch Dryweryn was the late Professor Mike ( later spelled Meic) Stevens. What a talented and scholarly lot these graffiti writers became! Did they already consider themselves men of letters in their nationalist-slogan writing days?