Posted on 4 April 2012
Last week, Welsh education lost one of its tireless campaigners and major benefactors following the death of Gwilym E Humphreys, aged 80.
An honorary Graduate of the University of Wales, Gwilym Humphreys had a distinguished career in Welsh education including posts as former Director of Education in Gwynedd and as the chair of the University of Wales's Welsh-Medium Teaching Board between 1996 and 2003.
Perhaps most well known for being the first Headteacher of Ysgol Gyfun Rhydfelen, Gwilym Humphreys was one of Wales’ foremost educators and someone who played a prominent role in Welsh life for half a century. Ysgol Gyfun Rhydfelen was established in 1962 in the village of Rhydyfelin near Pontypridd, and was the first Welsh language comprehensive school in the south of Wales and the second to be established in the country.
David R. Jones, Gwynedd Council's current Head of Education recently paid tribute to Gwilym Humphreys:
"In the death of Gwilym Humphreys, Wales lost a giant of a Welshman who worked with conviction throughout his career for Welsh education and culture. He will be remembered here in Gwynedd as an educator who had authority and as a Welshman who stood in support of the Welsh. "
Born in Wallasey, the son of Presbyterian minister Gwilym Humphreys was brought up in Rhos. Outside of education, he contributed to the Eistedfodd and to University comittees. He was also President of the National Eisteddfod Court. He leaves behind a wife and two children.