A production company from Welshpool is producing a series of documentaries that look at the historical impact of the large reservoirs that were created in Wales in order to supply English cities with water.

Hiraeth Film has published the first two episodes on YouTube, with the producers stating their delight at the surprising success of the second episode having been viewed over 2,000 times already.

Fel Gwaelod Llyn gan Ffilmiau Hiraeth

The series is titled 'Fel Gwaelod Llyn' (Like the bed of a lake) and in the first episode, the village of Dolanog is the focus.

Dolanog was the village in Powys that was earmarked for flooding in order to create a reservoir before the site of Capel Celyn was selected towards the end of the fifties.

In episode two it is the little known story of Llanwddyn that is brought to life.

The village, also in Powys, was drowned in order to supply Liverpool with water. Work on the reservoir, now known as Lake or Llyn Vyrnwy, started in 1881 with water reaching the lip of the dam in 1889.

The name of the village survives, and it is centred on the reservoir, and it is some two miles south of the orginal now submerged village.

The villagers were never consulted and an act of parliament was passed in order to authorize the work.


The Hiraeth crew, who create documentaries on micro budgets, are currently working on the final part of the trilogy. The story of the drowning of Capel Celyn and the creation of the Tryweryn dam will bring the series to a conclusion.

The producers have filmed exclusive interviews with former residents of the village as well as interviews with leading figures from the Welsh cultural and political movements, including Dafydd Iwan and Liz Saville Roberts the MP in whose constituency Llyn Celyn sits.

130 years since the drowning of Llanwddyn and over half a century since the drowning of Capel Celyn, the subject of building reservoirs in Wales to supply English cities with water continues to churn the waters of Welsh nationalism.

Episode one can be viewed here.

The second episode can be viewed here.

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