Based on a core corpus of short sketches commissioned by the local papur bro, Papur Dre, the volume consists of twenty-five short sketches describing places of significance in and around the town of Caernarfon. Pioneering in form, these geo-cultural micro-essays, deliberately written in a plain and concise style in order to appeal to as wide a readership as possible, are the result of extensive research into the town’s history, geography and sociology by means of manuscripts, maps, oral history, census results, linguistic records and sociolinguistic studies – and other local documents held at the Gwynedd archives.
Further primary research was conducted in consultation with local community groups, schools and businesses, as well as through interviews and correspondence with individuals, in order to enhance the target audience’s engagement with the project, to foster a sense of inclusiveness and to represent fairly the town’s various localities.
Following the publication of the volume, which was accompanied by an exhibition of photos at Galeri cultural centre, with quotes displayed from the book, a guided walk around the book’s locations was arranged as part of the Gwyl Arall festival in 2016. The author, along with the photographer, were invited by the Caernarfon Civic Society to deliver a public lecture about the project to a large audience in 2017.
The free bilingual mobile phone app, which accompanies the book, was awarded an ESRC Impact Project Grant, and was featured on S4C (Heno) and the BBC Radio Cymru programme ‘Stiwdio’. The book’s conception has moreover inspired similar publications, such the volume, Aberteifi by Ceri Wyn Jones and Richard Outram, which was published by Carreg Gwalch in 2020. and which directly follows the format of Trysorau Cudd Caernarfon.