Eryri National park lake names to only be referred to in Welsh

The name of Wales' highest mountain was officially changed from Snowdon to Yr Wyddfa last year. Credit: PA

A national park will only refer to its lakes by their Welsh names, instead of including English translations.

Eryri National Park - formerly referred to in English as Snowdonia National Park - has made the move to try to standardise the spelling of names and clear up confusion about spellings.

The National Park Authority also said it is an important step in "safeguarding" the heritage of the area for future generations.

The change has been recommended by the Welsh Language Commissioner after working with the National Park Authority and the School of Welsh at Cardiff University.

Members of the National Park Authority backed the move unanimously in a vote on Wednesday.

Many smaller lakes do not appear on signs. The parks managers say this makes it more important to standardise their spelling on maps. Credit: Daily Post Wales

In a statement, Eryri's managers said: "The aim of the pilot project is to research and record the National Park’s wealth of historical geographical names so that they are safeguarded, and used extensively in conversations, on maps and in print, so that they are conserved for future generations."

There are more than 100 lakes in the national park. While some are already just referred to by their Welsh name, others also have an English translation.

Llyn Tegid, Wales' largest natural lake, is sometimes referred to as Lake Bala, while Llyn Bochlwyd is often called Lake Australia.

Many of the smaller lakes do not appear on signs. Managers of Eryri said this makes it all the more important to give an accurate Welsh spelling on maps.

Dr Eleri James, the Welsh Language Commissioner’s Senior Infrastructure and Research Officer said: "Not many of these lake names will ever appear on signage, so it’s even more important to record them accurately on maps to guard them for future generations.”

Some of the standardisation will look to clear up how Welsh names should be spelt.

The change is being made to try to secure the heritage of the area for future generations. Credit: PA

It follows decisions to officially change the name of the park to Eryri instead of Snowdonia and to rename Mount Snowdon - situated in the national park - to Yr Wyddfa.

Talking about the significance of the name change, Dr Dylan Foster, head of Cardiff University's School of Welsh said: “Place names are part of everyone’s heritage and in a digital age when information is shared online in an instant, having standardised forms of names benefits everyone.

"Projects like this also draw attention to the richness of our local dialects and folklore, and allow us to share all kinds of stories about the names that are such an important part of the identities of our communities.”

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