A special COVID memorial bench, which pays tribute to more than 50 people who sadly died during the pandemic, has been unveiled.
The bench, in Gilfach Goch, now sits as a permanent tribute after being unveiled by First Minister, Mark Drakeford. As well as being a place for reflection and hope, the bench is also testimony to the way in which village residents came together to support one another.
The bench was organised by Gilfach Goch Community Council and supported by funding from Pennant Walters and Bridgend’s Manning Construction.
Addressing a crowd of locals Mr Drakeford said not a family in Wales had been untouched by the pandemic.
“The need to remember is very real. The fact that there will be a place here in Gilfach Goch, where people can come and do that simple act of remembrance, will be important in many, many lives for many, many years to come.”
The council’s intention is that the bench offers a place for reflection and remembrance, and it encourages its use by the public.
RCT Councillor Aurfron Roberts said:
“The bench is very significant in that it’s bringing together two parts of the community that lost loved ones during the pandemic. I think it’s good for our community that we’re united over it and let’s hope it’s onwards and upwards for our community.”
The sponsorship provided by Pennant Walters is from a fund linked to two wind farms in the Gilfach Goch and Blackmill areas, Pant y Wal in the county of Bridgend, and Fforch Nest, which straddles the border of Bridgend and Rhondda Cynon Taf. The two sites have a total of 21 turbines producing 53 megawatts of clean electricity – enough to power the equivalent of 25,000 homes.
Pennant Walters Managing Director, Dale Hart, added:
“We are happy to support the Council’s wishes to honour those loved ones who were sadly lost during the pandemic. We hope it’s presence in the village will allow the local community to reflect and remember the importance of life.”