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Landmark tower's legendary new look.

Byline: anna lewis Reporter anna.lewis@walesonline.co.uk

WORK has begun transforming an iconic Cardiff landmark into a 50ft mural of Welsh legends.

Progress has started at the water tower at Cardiff Central train station installing a mural designed by Super Furry Animals artist Pete Fowler.

The artwork, which is being created by Literature Wales in partnership with Cadw, shows a collection of colourful cartoon characters taken from the Welsh Mabinogion.

It also forms part of Visit Wales' PS5m Year of Legends tourism campaign.

A team was seen using abseils and cranes to instal the mural on the 15m tower standing opposite the Principality Stadium.

Inspired by the ancient legends, the artwork shows the giant Bendigeidfran, maiden Blodeuwedd and goddess Rhiannon among other figures.

The colourful wraparound design also features the stag slain by the ghostly hounds of Arawn, Lord of Annwn, and the crown known as the harbinger of death throughout the legends.

The tower was originally built in 1932 to replenish the water supplies of steam engines.

Before falling into disrepair the grade II listed tower was previously decorated with advertising and the image of daffodils, becoming a landmark for rail travellers.

In 2012 it was renovated using brown and beige paint - the original colours of Great Western Railway.

The mural was designed by Welsh artist Fowler after a six-stop Weird & Wonderful Wales tour with 30 writers to explore its most unusual stories.

In a planning application submitted to Cardiff council in 2014, the acclaimed artist described the idea as a landmark to "welcome visitors to the Welsh capital".

He added that he hoped the mural, which will be on display throughout 2018, would be "bright, fun and eyecatching".

Further murals by Fowler retelling Welsh legends will now be installed at six Cadw sites in Conwy, Gwynedd, Caerphilly, Carmarthenshire, Swansea and Torfaen.

Best known for creating album artwork for psychedelic Welsh rockers Super Furry Animals, Fowler has also launched a series of free comics bringing tales about two Welsh castles to life.

The comics, which can be downloaded from the Cadw website, illustrate the story of Welsh warrior princess Gwenllian and the Mabinogion's tragic tale about Branwen ferch Llyr.

Cabinet secretary for economy and infrastructure Ken Skates said of the mural: "I'm sure it will intrigue and inspire people to find out more and is an excellent way of bringing our stories and legends to life this year."

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Work going on to create a mural on the water tower near Cardiff Central Station RICHARD WILLIAMS

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Publication:South Wales Echo (Cardiff, Wales)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Dec 21, 2017
Words:420
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