Going Underground

Hidden Cardiff uncovered on the Tube with Tanni-Grey and Jarman

A Welsh language adaptation of the iconic I Loves The ‘Diff Cardiff Underground Map is being launched today (28 June).

The Cyncoed, Penylan, Roath and Cathays committee of Cardiff 2018 National Eisteddfod had the brainwave to consult with Christian Amodeo, who established the I Loves The ‘Diff company in Roath, for a strong visual symbol to celebrate Cardiff as part of its fundraising activities.

The original fictitious ‘Cardiff Underground Map’, created by Christian, was launched in 2010 and a huge version can now be seen in St Davids2 shopping centre in the city centre. It is a constant topic of conversation among local people and visitors of every age!

The committee discussed lots of ideas with Cardiff historian, Dylan Foster Evans from Cardiff University, who ultimately took the lead on what is a fascinating Welsh Language adaptation which is sure to generate discussion.

Dylan worked alongside Christian in creating a stunning picture of an imaginary Cardiff with make-believe lines linking familiar Cardiff sites like Roath, Pen-y-lan and Canton.

The Welsh language version uncovers some of the oldest, original Welsh names in Cardiff whilst also paying homage to some of the capital’s greats including boxer Jim Driscoll, Paralympian Tanni Grey-Thompson, and Wales’ former First Minister, Rhodri Morgan.

There also some of Cardiff’s most famous landmarks, such as the Aneurin Bevan statue on Queen Street and The Senedd building in Cardiff Bay.

The map has also deliberately sought to showcase some of Cardiff’s original Welsh names for the underground stations. These include Heol y Plwca (City Road), Y Cimdda (Victoria Park) and Sarn Fid Foel (North Road).

And, in keeping with the map’s sense of fun, Dylan Foster Evans has also taken the liberty of making up some new ones by drawing on Cardiff’s rich history. These include Llywelyn Bren station (a fourteenth-century rebel who led a revolt against a rapacious lord of Glamorgan) as well as a line that celebrates the work of the Cardiff reggae singer Geraint Jarman.

Christian Amodeo from I Loves The ‘Diff said:

“When the idea of having such a map to raise money for the Eisteddfod was suggested to me, I was immediately keen. I think it’s a great idea. It’s good to know the efforts that the illustrious team has gone to has not only ensured linguistic accuracy but also added much cultural flavour. I hope to include notes on the various stations on the ilovesthediff.com website to explain the reasons for the names of various stops!”

The other key member of the team is Dr Dylan Foster Evans from Cardiff University. He has said that the map aims to combine two things:

”The map tries to put the Welsh-language names for many of Cardiff’s streets and sights literally on the map but does so in a playful way. It also tries to uncover some of the city’s hidden Welsh past and bring it to the surface. The capital has at times been slow to recognise its varied linguistic heritage and there is always a risk that some of its rich past could be forgotten. This beautiful map helps rework that history whilst also raising vital funds for the National Eisteddfod.”

There has already been a great response to the idea with people already keen to place an order for the map which will be launched at Cardiff MADE gallery in Roath, a real hidden gem.

Proceeds from the map will go to the National Eisteddfod to be held in Cardiff during August 2018.

How to order a copy

The poster can be bought for £12 whilst framed editions are available for £40 (unmounted) and £50 (mounted). The map will be on sale at the Tafwyl festival. Orders can be taken through Nia Richards at niabenaur@hotmail.com