City of Culture judges set to enjoy the best of Swansea Bay
CITY of Culture judges are being invited to Swansea Bay to see first-hand what cultural gems are on offer in the area.
They are being asked to join a VIP audience at the Dylan Thomas centenary event in Swansea on Tuesday, October 22.
The region is bidding to play host to the City of Culture in four years time.
The legendary poet's granddaughter Hannah Ellis will also be attending along with Swansea-born official harpist to Prince Charles, Hannah Stone.
Swansea West MP Geraint Davies said he was looking to invite the judges to see how Swansea Bay was steeped in culture.
He said: "We will be inviting the judges to the event. The head of scheduling for Sky One is also looking to be at the Dylan Thomas event in October.
"We will be showcasing what we will be doing next year in Swansea to mark the centenary of Dylan Thomas's birth and ambassadors around the world will be there.
"I will be encouraging the Japanese ambassador to urge Japanese students to submit their work for the Dylan Thomas Prize of £30,000."
He added: "The University of Wales Trinity Saint David will be there, along with Prince Charles's harpist and Dylan Thomas's granddaughter Hannah Ellis.
"Her father will be doing a solo for the London Welsh Choir."
Mr Davies said it was a prestigious event which would show Swansea at its best.
"Culture Secretary Maria Miller will be speaking at the event as well as David Jones, the Welsh Secretary, and I have invited Swansea Council leader David Phillips," he said.
"It will be a platform for Swansea and will help promote cultural investment in the city.
"It will help us in our journey towards 2017."
Mr Davies, who jointly organised an event at Westminster, with Swansea East MP Sian James, for MPs to enjoy a taste of Swansea Bay, including Tomos Watkin, Joe's Ice Cream, Jenkins Bakery, Welsh cakes and pate, is looking to build on its success.
There were also performances from the Phoenix Choir and entertainer Lyn Mackay and Mal Pope compered the afternoon reception.
"There are plans to keep the momentum going into the Dylan Thomas event," he said.
Mr Davies has touted the possibility of holding a week-long event to celebrate Dylan Thomas in a similar fashion to the Hay Festival.
A final decision on which city will be the 2017 City of Culture will be made in November.