Visit of King Goodwill Zwelithini to Brecon

In 2017, Brecon was proud to host 100 Zulus including Queen Mantfombi. The Zulus stopped the traffic and people wherever they went. 2019 is the 140th anniversary of the Anglo-Zulu wars, known to most people in the UK for the epic battle at Isandlwana and the defence of Rorke’s Drift.

This year, Brecon will have the even greater honour of a visit by the current Zulu monarch, King Goodwill Zwelithini kaBhekuzulu, members of his family and entourage who have been invited to Wales by the Friends and Trustees of the Royal Welsh Regimental Museum. A major series of events are being organised to celebrate this strengthening of the cultural ties between KwaZulu-Natal and Wales. These include

• The King Goodwill Art competition open to all youngsters aged 9-18 living in Wales with first prizes of £100 worth of art materials. See the leaflet for details, closing date is 3rd June, please encourage your family, friends, colleagues, schools to enter.

• Victorian workshops were held in April at the Regimental Museum attended by local schools. The workshops included the story of the life of King Cetshwayo.

• Follow-up art sessions will be held in May in those local schools to produce art pieces about the life of King Cetshwayo.

• A children’s book has been written about the life of King Cetshwayo. When published, this will include children’s art work from local schools.

• An illustrated map has been created by a local artist which shows the highlights of King Cetshwayo’s time in London in 1882. During his stay, he travelled to Osborne House to meet Queen Victoria. As part of his visit, King Goodwill Zwelithini will follow in King Cetshwayo’s footsteps in London. The map will be presented to him as a memento of his visit.

• The Army is working with the Regimental Museum to hold Community Day at the Barracks on 21st July. This will see a fantastic pageant staged for King Goodwill Zwelithini, supported by local choirs and bands.

• A gala concert will be held at Brecon Cathedral on 22nd July to showcase Welsh musical tradition and talent to the King. Sir Timothy Ackroyd will compere this event. Planning is also underway to bring performers from KwaZulu-Natal to stage a musical, dance and drumming concerts. Keeping looking out for more details nearer the time in local press and social media. Any queries to Dorcas Cresswell at dorcascresswell@gmail.com.