The Welsh Academy

The Welsh Academy


Yr Academi Gymreig – The Welsh Academy is the national Society of Writers in Wales. The society represents the interests of Welsh writers and writing both inside Wales and beyond. The Welsh Academy maintains the high standard and character of literature in Wales by providing a forum and a collective voice for Wales' writers. As such it has lobbying, events and activities scheduling, and service provision powers. It also facilitates literature consumption amongst its Associates (i.e. non-writer members).

Society History

Yr Academi Gymreig - The Welsh Academy was founded in 1959 on the basis of conversations between Bobi Jones and Waldo Williams. Following its inaugural meeting in 1960, the society's first aim and objective was to establish a new Welsh-language literary periodical. The first edition of Taliesin was published by Yr Academi Gymreig in 1961. An English-language section to the society was created in 1968 through an initiative by Meic Stephens in association with the Guild of Welsh Writers. With funds mostly provided from public sources, it has been constitutionally independent since 1978.

In 1998 the society took on a much enhanced role when it won the Arts Council of Wales’ franchise to provide a Welsh National Literature Promotion Agency. The much-changed and enlarged Academi which emerged delivered literary provision across Wales until 2011, when it joined with Tŷ Newydd Writers' Centre to form a new national organisation known as Llenyddiaeth Cymru - Literature Wales.

The Welsh Academy, as the national Society of Writers in Wales, retained its unique identity within Academi and is currently enjoying a resurgence under Literature Wales.

The Welsh Academy Today

The Welsh Academy has around 600 Members. Poet, fictional prose writer and critic Bobi Jones and National Poet for Wales Gillian Clarke are the current Presidents. Click here for more information on Members and Fellows. 

Members' events include day schools, conferences, fayres, debates, anniversary and celebratory dinners, and the Gwyn Jones lecture series. Taliesin continues to thrive under the society. The Welsh Academy English - Welsh Dictionary was first published by the University of Wales Press in 1995, and is now online. The Welsh Academy Encyclopaedia of Wales was published by the University of Wales Press in 2008.
If you are a Member of The Welsh Academy and would like more information on what you can do, please email