Cardiff Bay controversial Dolffin Quay development plans withdrawn

The Welsh Norwegian Society, having objected to the plan to build on a large scale in Cardiff Bay (which would overshadow the Norwegian Church) is very relieved that the plan has been dropped.

Norwegian Church Arts Centre, Cardiff Bay

Norwegian Church Arts Centre, Cardiff Bay

The Norwegian Seamen’s Church has been “a little piece of Norway” in the dock area of Cardiff for 150 years, and when it ceased to function as a seamen’s church, it first was adopted by Lutheran congregations around Cardiff but was eventually closed in the 1970s.  A Trust was formed so that the very characteristic church building might be saved, and in due course the Church was demolished and rebuilt on its present site, being reopened as the Norwegian Church Arts Centre by Princess Märtha Louise of Norway in April 1992.  Many people involved with the Trust helped to start the Welsh Norwegian Society which has met at the Norwegian Church since 1995 and has ever since been a means of promoting and  disseminating Norwegian culture and bringing together those with an interest in Norway, including many of Norwegian nationality and descent.  The Church and the Society alike have benefited from the Cardiff Hordaland twinning link.

2017 Autumn Newsletter

Dear members of Welsh Norwegian Society and new prospective members.

The WNS committee would like to thank you for your ongoing support and interest in our Welsh Norwegian Society.

The 2017 autumn newsletter is here, with information about the Annual General Meeting and 2017/18 WNS membership (which is renewed this month).

2017 Annual General Meeting, new committee and social meetings.

WNS Membership and membership fee for 2017/18.

2017 Annual General Meeting

On September 23rd 2017 the Annual General Meeting was held in the Norwegian Church Arts Centre in Cardiff. Several points were discussed, the main ones being the election of a new committee and planning the Christmas program. As a consequence of last year’s changes to make the social gatherings more family friendly, a lot of new members have joined WNS. This has also attracted a greater interest in participating in the Society and as a result we elected a new committee for 2017/18, with a healthy mix of new and long-standing members.

However, before we introduce the new committee we would like to thank the former committee members whom with admirable dedication and passion has over many, many years served the Society. They initiated and organised several successful events and traditions like the Norwegian Constitutional Celebration on May 17th, allowing members and non-members to celebrate this special day with a parade and Norwegian folk music, followed by the traditional coffee and waffles at the Norwegian church in Cardiff Bay. They organised the lovely St Hans Midsummer Garden party and ‘juletrefest’ in in the Norwegian Church with traditional Christmas songs and dance around the Christmas tree. We would like to thank the former chair Averil Goldsworthy, treasurer Tony Olavesen, members secretary David Nicholls, and committee members Mary Allen and Karen Allen for all their hard work and commitment to the Welsh Norwegian Society.

The newly elected WNS Committee 2017/18.

new committee 2017-18.jpg

From the left: Adila Lundin, Anne Kirsti Kirby, Tyra Oseng-Rees, Wenche Davies, Alan Hall, Johan Butenschøn Skre and Ebba Lovering.

As a results of the election Alan Hall was re-elected in his position as secretary. Tyra Oseng-Rees was elected as the new chair of the Socitey, Adila Lundin as treasurer and Johan Butenschøn Skre as the new membership secretary. Wenche Davies, Anne Kirsti Kirby and Ebba Lovering are continuing in the committee as Committee Members. We are very pleased that the new committee is a mix of long-standing and new members, all of whom are eager to continue developing WNS's work for its members.

In the weeks to come we will find our footing as a group and start planning meetings and events leading up to Christmas. 

Following that is the November meeting on the 26th, same time and place. This meeting will focus on preparing for Christmas and we will be making traditional Norwegian Christmas decorations. Also, starting from October meeting, we will change the payment for cakes and coffee to make it more fair. Instead of everyone paying we pay £1 per slice of cake and £1 for coffee. So please bring some cash,

Our Christmas celebration will follow on Sunday 17th December and we have decided that we will be continuing the family friendly tradition with a daytime celebration and we have sent an invitation to Julenissen (Father Christmas) and asked if he has got time in his busy schedule to visit us. We will keep you posted with further information and how to book a space.

We hope that you will join us at the social gatherings and if you have any ideas or wishes for the future please do not hesitate to email us with your ideas and thoughts.



Nordland - Foto: Johan Butenschøn Skre

2017/18 Membership

We want to make sure you get the most out of your membership and the WNS community. The annual £10 membership fee allows us to organise social events, run our webpage and newsletters and hopefully come up with other events or offerings that you will enjoy. The membership fee is payable by BACS transfer, cash or cheque, and should be paid by October 30th.
Cash can be given to Adila or Johan at Sunday's meeting.

Cheques are made payable to The Welsh Norwegian Society and can be posted to:
Adila Lundin
7 Pen-y-Wain Road
CF24 4GB

Bank transfers are paid to:
The Welsh Norwegian Society
Sort code: 30-91-18
Account number: 02856244

PayPal is being set up, but not yet ready.

Annual General Meeting 2017

The Welsh Norwegian Society held its Annual General Meeting at it's spiritual home, the Norwegian Church and Arts Centre.

As well as ensuring the constitution was brought up to date key positions within the Society were voted upon and a new committee elected.

New Committee 2017.jpg

Dr Tyra Oseng-Rees was elected to the position of Chair person of the Society. Dr Oseng-Rees wishes to build upon the previous work of the committee and grow the numbers of the Society as well as ensuring the Society continues to develop its digital presence in the multimedia world.

Alan Hall continues in his long established role as Secretary providing continuity to the committee and ensuring the long held traditions of the Society will be maintained.

Adila Lundin has been elected as the new Treasurer. Johan Butenschoen Skre has been elected as Membership Secretary. Wenche Davies, Anne Kirsti Kirby and Ebba Lovering were elected as committee members.

The Society will now commence its Autumn programme and planning for Christmas celebrations will soon begin. If you wish to become a member or would like to contribute in any way then please contact us at

Save the Norwegian Church's waterfront park setting

We need to protect the Norwegian Church's iconic setting on the waterfront of Cardiff Bay from the proposed Associated British Ports (ABP) Dolffin Quay development.

Planning Ref: 17/01848/MJR 

This development would overshadow and overcrowd the Norwegian Church and its waterfront setting, surrounding it with a collection of residential and commercial buildings, including a 24-storey apartment block.

The Norwegian Church is one of the most recognised and well-loved buildings in Cardiff Bay. Since it was reopened as a cultural centre on the waterfront of Cardiff Bay in 1992 it has been appreciated, by residents and visitors alike, as one of the few historic buildings that convey the history of Cardiff Bay; a symbol of Cardiff's rich multicultural past.

If the Dolffin Quay development were allowed to go ahead, the open views of the iconic Norwegian Church from around the Bay, and its Waterfront Park setting would be gone forever.

We call upon Cardiff Council to reject this application from ABP and ensure any future development of this area is sensitive, and preserves the Waterfront Park setting of the Norwegian Church for residents and visitors alike.

Please show your support by clicking here to visit and sign the petition.

This petition will be delivered to:

  • Cardiff Council

Save the green space around the Norwegian Church from property developers

The Welsh Norwegian Society appeal to save the green space around the Norwegian Church in Cardiff Bay.


Click here to visit and show your opposition to the plans to develop the last remaining green space in Cardiff Bay into a collection of residential and commercial buildings.

The below message is taken from the #SaveOurBae campaign which has been set up to petition Cardiff City Council and oppose the development.


We need to protect Cardiff Bay's Britannia and Waterfront Parks from the proposed Association of British Ports (ABP) Dolffin Quay development. This development would replace the last remaining green space in Cardiff Bay with a collection of residential and commercial buildings.

The grassed area and children’s playground on the Britannia Park site are the last remaining ones of their kind easily available to local families with children in the area.

Cardiff Bay is a unique and world renowned waterfront. Britannia Park has been a vital part of Cardiff Bay since 1993. It is much loved, not only by Cardiff residents, but also by visitors who come to enjoy the outside spaces, art and heritage.

Most properties in Cardiff Bay are without gardens. It is vital that we protect the only remaining green space.

We therefore call upon Cardiff City Council to reject any application from ABP that would remove the Britannia and Waterfront Parks.

Join our campaign to #saveourbae and protect Cardiff Bay's last green space.




Y mae'n rhaid inni amddiffyn parciau Britannia a Waterfront Bae Caerdydd rhag y datblygiad a gynigiwyd gan Gymdeithas Porthladdoedd Prydain (ABP). Fe fyddai'r datblygiad yma yn cael gwared o'r man gwyrdd diwethaf yn y Bae i wneud lle i gasgliad o adeiladau preswyl a masnachol. Y man gwyrdd a'r cae chwarae plant ym Mharc Britannia yw'r diwethaf o'u math yn yr ardal sydd ar gael yn hawdd i deuluoedd lleol a'u plant. Y mae Bae Caerdydd yn unigryw gyda enw byd eang. Y mae Parc Britannia wedi bod yn  rhan hanfodol o Fae Caerdydd er 1993

Y mae pawb wrth eu bodd gyda'r parc. Y mae'n cael ei fwynhau nid yn unig gan bobl sydd yn byw yng Nghaerdydd, ond hefyd gan ymwelwyr sydd yn dod i fanteisio ar y mannau agored, y celfyddyd a'r hanes yma. Y mae rhan fwyaf o'r cartrefi ym Mae Caerdydd heb ardd. Y mae'n holl bwysig i warchod yr unig fannau gwyrdd ar ol. Galwn felly ar Gyngor Prifddinas Caerdydd i wrthod unrhyw gais datblygu oddi wrth ABP a fyddai'n lleihau neu gael gwared ar Parciau Britanni a Waterfront. 

Ymunwch a'n ymgyrch i warchod ein bae (#saveourbae)- y man gwyrdd agored olaf yn y bae. 

Peter Birger Persen - President of the Welsh Norwegian Society

It is with great regret that the Welsh Norwegian Society have news of the passing of our President Peter Persen on the 21st June 2017 at University of Hospital Wales. Our sympathies and condolences are passed to his family and friends.

Peter Birger Persen born 1929 was the son of a Norwegian Sea Captain.  Peter was born and raised in Cardiff, but nevertheless always felt his Norwegian heritage strongly.  He often sailed on his father's ship as a boy and used to frequently say that he knew the Kiel Canal as well as he knew Roath Park Lake.

He became President of The Welsh Norwegian Society and gave much of his time to this job.  Peter was much appreciated and will be sadly missed.

Peter married his wife Betty at the previous Norwegian Seamen'sChurch before the present Church was built.  He is survived by his wife, a son and daughter plus 3 grandchildren who are the 5th generation of the family.

The funeral takes place on Wed. 12th July at the Briwnant Chapel, Thornhill Crematorium  at 12.45 p.m. followed by internment at the cemetery at 01.30 p.m.

The family request that those who may wish to offer flowers instead if they choose to do so offer an independent donation to Parkinson's UK or via a retiring collection at the chapel.


St Hans Midsummer Bonfire and Barbecue

Friday 23rd June saw the Welsh Norwegian Society visit the Gower to celebrate the Midsummer Solstice with a barbecue and bonfire. The damp weather did not put anyone off from enjoying themselves as we showed the best of British and cooked under umbrellas in the rain!!

As always there was coffee and cake and to warm the spirits a little aquavit was shared to toast the occasion.

The evening was topped off with a traditional bonfire that lit the night sky. Many thanks to all those members that helped to make the evening such an enjoyable success.

17th May Celebrations held in Cardiff Bay

This is a short video showing the Syttende Mai Norwegian Constitutional Day celebrations in Cardiff and what the day means to Norwegians living in Wales. Swansea College of Art Norwegian film students Amelia Fevang and Annikken Fossberg captured the events of the day on behalf of the society.

Norwegian Constitutional Day celebrations were held in Cardiff Bay on the 17th May. Over one hundred Norwegians and other nationalities with an interest in Norway came together to parade from the Wales Millenium Centre to the Norwegian Church Arts Centre.

There the flag was raised to the national anthem performed by the Salvation Army Fellowship band. Once inside the church speeches were provided by members of the Society and a violin performance performed by Vyvyan Lucas and a moment was taken to remember those who gave their lives to protect our freedoms.

Traditional waffles and coffee were then enjoyed by all.