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17 December 2020

Nia celebrates 20 years!

In July 2020 Nia Wyn Jones, Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru’s Systems Manager, celebrated a very significant milestone, that of twenty years of working for the Association. When Nia started in her post she was the only full-time member of staff, Megan Hughes Tomos was a part time Director at the time. As the Association grew, so she came to enjoy the company of others of us in the office!

As those who are familiar with the Association know only too well, Nia has played a crucial role in its development during this time. Not the least of her many duties is the administration of the examinations and interpreting tests, ensuring they happen smoothly and efficiently. And they do!

To mark the occasion Ifan Prys wrote a delightful chain of ‘englynion’ (a traditional Welsh short poem form written in ‘cynghanedd’, the strict metres). In his ‘englynion’, which we have not translated but can be seen on the Welsh side of this website, Ifan has skilfully woven together the buildings which have been home to the Association since 2000, namely Aethwy at Bangor University; Bryn Menai, our office in Upper Bangor from 2001 until September 2019; and the present office in Intec, Parc Menai on the outskirts of Bangor.

We are grateful to Tonnau, Pwllheli, for the calligraphy and the framing of the ‘englynion’.

Nia Ar Englynion

7 December 2020

Interpreting in Microsoft Teams

Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru has written to Microsoft Teams (3 December 2020) urging them to move swiftly to a successful solution to the matter of providing interpreting as an integral component of Microsoft Teams.

Our letter emphasised that because it is not possible to provide interpreting in Teams Welsh speakers are being prevented from using their mother tongue in meetings. For interpreters, it has meant a serious loss of income in a year when the impact of Covid-19 on them financially has been brutal.

21 November 2020

Mari Lisa

It is with great sadness that we heard of Mari Lisa’s sudden death.

Mari was one of the Directors of Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru, an examination marker and a tutor, and one who contributed generously to the activities of the Association. As well as being a highly regarded translator, Mari was a novelist and poet. We will be the poorer for her passing.

As an Association, we extend our sincerest sympathy to Mari’s family in their sad loss.

4 November 2020

Report on the activities of 2019-20

The Report on the activities of Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru in 2019-20 shows that the Association continued to hold membership examinations and provided various professional development activities and opportunities, continued to work in partnership with the higher education sector, and continued to forge links and collaborated with public organisations and with other translation and interpreting associations for the good of the Association and to raise the profile of the Welsh translation and interpreting profession.

One again this year, it is a source of great pleasure that membership of the Association on 31 March 2020 was at a record high of 411 members.

In acknowledging his appreciation of the members’ contribution, Chair, Huw Tegid Roberts, in his Foreword looks forward confidently,

‘Whatever the future holds, I hope that all of us will be encouraged by the fact that we are members of an Association of over four hundred members, all of whom have a part to play in ensuring that the Welsh language continues to thrive as an integral part of the public, private, voluntary and leisure aspects of our nation. Thank you all for your contributions to the vital work of ensuring that the citizens of Wales in this Covid dominated period can continue to live and work through the medium of Welsh.’

Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru is part-funded by the Welsh Government, and we would like to place on record our thanks for this support.

21 September 2020

Her Gyfieithu 2020

Grug Muse is the winner of Her Gyfieithu 2020, the Translation Challenge into Welsh.

Grug Muse is a poet, editor and researcher. She is one of the founding members and editors of Y Stamp literary magazine. Her first volume of poetry, Ar Ddisberod, was published by Barddas in 2017, and her work has been published in several publications including O’r Pedwar Gwynt, Barddas, Poetry Wales. She is a recipient of a Literature Wales Writers Bursary in 2020. She is currently working on a PhD research project at Swansea University.

Grug wins a prize of £200, as well as the Her Gyfieithu Staff, sponsored by Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru, which is awarded for the best Welsh translation.

In sponsoring the Her Gyfieithu Staff once again, it gives Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru great pleasure to acknowledge the fine craftsmanship of Elis Gwyn who has carved this unique prize from a piece of wood found in the woodlands around Llanystumdwy.

This year’s challenge was to translate a series of short poems titled ‘Nahaufnahmen’ by Turkish poet, Zafer Şenocak, from German. Zafer Şenocak lives in Berlin, where he has become a leading voice in discussions on multiculturalism, national and cultural identity, and a mediator between Turkish and German culture.

Her Gyfieithu adjudicator, Mererid Hopwood, received 11 entries, and said that Grug’s entry was the translation that captured her imagination and was most successful in creating the feeling of a ‘poem’.

The competition is organized by Wales Literature Exchange, Wales PEN Cymru and Literature Across Frontiers in collaboration with University of Wales Trinity Saint David, Swansea University, Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru, O’r Pedwar Gwynt, Poetry Wales and the Goethe-Institut.

The winner of Translation Challenge 2020 is Eleoma Bodammer.

A digital event will be held on 30 September, to coincide with International Translation Day, to celebrate Grug and Eleoma’s success.

The winning poems and the adjudications can be read on the Wales PEN Cymru website.

8 June 2020

Remote interpreting

In response to the new demands for interpreting during the present pandemic, we have included a new sub-section in the free to use search facility for translators and interpreters on our website which will allow people to find Interpreting Members who provide a remote interpreting service.

The Welsh Language Commissioner has published an advice note, ‘Holding bilingual video meetings’. This advice note has been prepared to provide quick advice to organisations during the global crisis caused by COVID-19. The note is intended to give practical guidance to organisations on how to continue to offer high quality bilingual services during this unprecedented period.

The advice note also refers to the guidelines produced by National Museum Wales for using an interpreter with ‘Zoom’. These practical and detailed guidelines offer specific directions for everyone involved in a meeting. Though intended for internal use originally, we are grateful to National Museum Wales for sharing these guidelines publicly so that they can be of assistance to others when holding bilingual meetings remotely.

26 March 2020

Message to the Chancellor of the Exchequer calling for measures for the self-employed

This message was sent to the Chancellor of the Exchequer on 25 March 2020 under the heading ‘Support self-employed translators and interpreters’:

First of all I hope that you, your family and your staff are all well and safe at this very uncertain time.

I write to you on behalf of the members of Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru, the association of Welsh translators and interpreters. Of our 410 members, some 43% are self-employed.

Government measures to tackle the spread of coronavirus have led to the immediate cessation of meetings which has left self-employed interpreters with cancelled assignments and a loss of income as a result. Work for self-employed translators is also drying up quickly.

Whilst we welcome the measures announced by the UK Government to support SMEs in this crisis, the coronavirus pandemic is posing an unprecedented threat to the livelihoods of these self-employed members as they are not covered in these measures to assist the business sector. They face an uncertain future and potential financial ruin. In addition, they are not eligible to claim Statutory Sick Pay for time spent in self-isolation.

We call on the UK Government to extend the Coronavirus Job Protection Scheme to include self-employed and freelance workers, so that self-employed translators and interpreters may also benefit from arrangements which could cover 80% of their earnings now that they are unable to work. The use of recent tax returns could be one means of judging eligibility.

It is invidious that employed people are protected by UK Government measures but self-employed people have been abandoned. It is imperative that the support measures for the business sector be extended to include and safeguard the self-employed as a matter of urgency.

10 December 2019

Report on the activities of 2018-19

The report on the activities of Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru in 2018-19 shows that the Association continued to hold membership examinations and provided various professional development activities and opportunities, continued to work in partnership with the higher education sector, and continued to forge links and collaborated with public organisations and with other translation and interpreting associations for the good of the Association and to raise the profile of the Welsh translation and interpreting profession.

In presenting this report, we would draw your attention to the following: the changes introduced to the Full Membership Examinations; the assessment criteria in the Interpreting Test were refined; a revised version of the CPD plan, ‘Balchder Crefft’, was published; and the Chief Executive’s presentation to the Welsh Language Seminar for Judges and the evidence provided to the Commission on Justice in Wales.

One again this year, it is a source of great pleasure that membership of the Association on 31 March 2019 was at a record high of 377 members. That figure has now increased to over 400 members.

In his Foreword new Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru Chair, Huw Tegid Roberts, says,

‘In such politically fraught times where every word in materials for public consumption is so closely scrutinised both for its surface and hidden meanings, it is gratifying to know that an organisation such as Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru exists to reassure commissioners of translations and interpreting of the high standard of our members’ work.’

Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru is part-funded by the Welsh Government, and we would like to place on record our thanks for this support.

2 September 2019

Moving to a new office

Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru is moving to a new office!

On 17 September 2019 we shall be moving office to Intec in Parc Menai on the outskirts of Bangor. The Building is owned by Cyngor Gwynedd.

The move has been prompted because our landlord, Adult Learing Wales, is restructuring in this part of Wales and requires our office for its staff.

The address of the new office is: Uned F5, Intec, Ffordd Y Parc, Parc Menai, Bangor LL57 4FG.

Our telephone number and e-mail will not change as a result of the move.

Note:

  • The move will affect the work of the office on Tuesday and Wednesday, 17-18 September 2019. We shall be back to normal by Thursday morning, 19 September 2019.
  • Please don’t phone us on Tuesday or Wednesday, 17-18 September 2019. You can continue to e-mail the office during this time, but will not you will not get an answer until Thursday, 19 September 2019.
  • The move will have no effect on the Membership Examinations to be held on 5 October 2019.

2 August 2019

The Conwy County National Eisteddfod

The Hedley Gibbard Memorial Lecture

Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru’s annual lecture will be held in Societies 1 at midday on Thursday, 8 August 2019.

This year’s lecture will be delivered by Karen Owen and is entitled 'Rhosgadfan a'r jacan joe'. The lecture will provide an insight into how Kate Roberts created dialogue for her best loved characters.

The lecture marks 60 years since the publication of Te yn y Grug [Tea in the Heather] by Kate Roberts, and the fact that the National Eisteddfod to mark this has commissioned Karen, along with Cefin Roberts and Al Lewis, to adapt the stories into a musical.

Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru’s annual lecture has, since 2002, been held in memory of Hedley Gibbard (1936-2001) as a mark of appreciation of his pioneering work in developing English/Welsh translation and interpretation.

Translation Challenge 2019

The Welsh language winner of Translation Challenge 2019 will be announced in a ceremony on the University of Wales Trinity Saint David stand at 3pm on Thursday, 8 August 2019.

The winner will receive £200 (given by Swansea University) and the Translation Challenge Staff. Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru is pleased to sponsor the Translation Challenge Staff once again, and in so doing to acknowledge the craftmanship of Elis Gwyn who has carved this unique prize from a piece of wood from the Llanystumdwy area.

Translation Challenge 2019 has been jointly organised by Wales PEN Cymru Wales and Literature Exchange Wales in co-operation with Swansea University, the University of Wales Trinity Saint David, the Polish Cultural Institute, Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru ac ‘O’r Pedwar Gwynt’.

Launch of a new website to support the training of interpreters

On Tuesday morning, 6 August 2019, at 11am on the University of Wales Trinity Saint David stand, the University will be launching a new website to support the training of trainee interpreters in the company of Minister for International Relations and the Welsh Language, Eluned Morgan AM.

Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru has contributed over 40 pieces to this website, pieces which have been used in our Interpreting Test during the past few years and others which were created especially for training purposes.

During the event we shall be presenting the Association’s prize to James Eul who was the most promising student studying the University of Wales Trinity Saint David’s Postgraduate Certificate in Interpreting this year.

Interpreting in court/tribunal hearings

On the Cyfiawnder Cymru [Justice in Wales] stand at 3pm on Wednesday, 7 August 2019, Chief Executive, Geraint Wyn Parry, will outline the work done to ensure the highest standards when providing interpreting in court and tribunal hearings, and the close working relationship Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru has with HMCTS Welsh Language Unit and with the Liaison Judges for the Welsh language.

University courses: translation and interpreting

GwyboDaith will take place on the Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol stand at 10:30am on Thursday, 8 August 2019. This information session will provide an opportunity to learn about Aberystwyth University’s postgraduate course in Professional Translation Studies, as well as the University of Wales Trinity Saint David’s Postgraduate Certificate in Interpreting.

Then at 1:15pm on Thursday, 8 August 2019, again on the Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol stand, Aberystwyth University and the University of Wales Trinity Saint David extend a welcome to all to the Professional Translation Studies Reception.

Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru will not have a stand on the Eisteddfod field.