Crowds march through colourful Cardiff to celebrate St David’s Day

An annual parade has taken place in Cardiff as Wales celebrates St David’s Day.

More than 200 people took part in the march through the city centre of the Welsh capital, while hundreds more lined the streets to celebrate the country’s patron saint.

People take part in a St David’s Day Parade in Cardiff
The St David’s Day Parade in Cardiff (Ben Birchall/PA)

Last year’s event was officially cancelled due to safety fears owing to snow and freezing temperatures, though a group of around 40 determined Welsh men and women did complete the route despite warnings to stay away.

On Friday, a much larger crowd dressed in traditional clothing and carrying Welsh flags marched through the streets of Cardiff.

The traditional procession, led by performer Meic Peterson dressed as St David, is made up of local people, theatrical performers and choir groups marching and singing across the city centre.

A man dressed as St David leads the way during a St David's Day Parade in Cardiff
A man dressed as St David leads the way (Ben Birchall/PA)

The parade ended in The Hayes area of the city centre at the statue of John Batchelor, a Welsh Liberal politician and mayor of Cardiff who campaigned against slavery in the 1800s.

There the crowd joined in a rousing rendition of the Welsh national anthem Hen Wlad Fy Nhadau.

Neil McEvoy, an independent Assembly Member in the Welsh Assembly, called for the Welsh Government to follow the examples of Ireland and Scotland and make celebrations of their patron saint a public holiday.

A Welsh red dragon is pulled along during a St David’s Day Parade in Cardiff
A Welsh red dragon is pulled along during the parade (Ben Birchall/PA)

Addressing the crowd, he said: “Cardiff Council, the Welsh Government, the Assembly, give your staff a day off.

“Make St David’s Day a festival. Go to Ireland, go to Dublin, see them celebrate Irishness. Go to Scotland, see how they celebrate Scottishness. What we need to do is invest in our national event, St David’s Day.”

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