Statue of Owain Glyndwr
Undersized male figure in military dress holding sword in left hand.
The work was commissioned by Corwen Community Council as part of environmental improvements to the square. The work was a subject of much local controversy with strong feelings expressed in the press. The statue was originally on a much smaller plinth but became a target for vandals with white paint thrown over it only a week after its unveiling in April 1995. It was eventually removed from the square after being continually vandalised. It was returned in October 1996 on a much higher plinth with the hope that this would deter vandals.
Owain Glyndwr was born near Corwen, studied law in London and served as a soldier under Richard II in France and Scotland. He had homes in the Dee Valley and at Sycharth near Bala. A dispute in 1400 led the previously loyal Glyndwr into conflict with Henry IV. This grew into an open revolt starting with an attack on Ruthin and other towns in north east Wales. Henry outlawed Glyndwr who continued to attract large numbers of recruits into his armies. He hosted the first parliament at Machynlleth in 1404 and others in Dolgellau and Harlech and also signed a treaty with France. The subsequent regrouping of English forces in 1408 combined with a lack of support from his French allies, turned the tide against Glyndwr. Harlech Castle was surrendered and his family taken prisoner. Glyndwr evaded capture and by 1410 his whereabouts were unknown. One suggestions is that he travelled to Herefordshire where he had two daughters living with English husbands although the exact location of his grave remains a mystery.
Incised on slate plaque on front of plinth: OWAIN / GLYNDWR / 1359 - 1416 / TYWYSOG CYMRU
Related works : A memorial to Glyndwr was unveiled in Machynlleth in September 2000. There is also a statue in Cardiff City Hall; see CARDIFF007.
PMSA recording information