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Last Updated: Friday, 28 December 2007, 11:23 GMT
Clog maker hot-foots to new home
Some of Trefor Owen's clogs
Most of the clogs Trefor Owen makes are for the dance market
A clog producer says a growing interest in traditional Welsh folk dancing, particularly among men, has prompted him to move his business to Gwynedd.

Trefor Owen, who makes hand-crafted clogs, has set up home in Criccieth in order to benefit from the trend.

According to Mr Owen, who has moved from Wakefield, West Yorkshire, and has been making clogs for 30 years, clog stepping in Wales is seen as macho.

He turns out a new pair of clogs from his workshop every day.

There are only about a dozen or so manufacturers of clogs still in business in the UK.

Trefor Owen
In Wales the clog-stepping, especially with all the tricks and acrobatics, is seen as a macho thing
Trefor Owen

Mr Owen, whose father was originally from Anglesey, still makes every pair of clogs traditionally by hand.

He gets his raw materials for the soles of his clogs from woods some 40 miles from his workshop.

He then fashions the soles, which are usually made out of sycamore or ash trees, in about two hours.

British clogs differ from Dutch clogs in that they fasten on the foot like a normal pair of shoes.

A basic pair of clogs from his workshop would cost 45-50, while a top-of-the-range pair for dancing, complete with embroidery, costs 140.

Most of his output is bought by clog dancers. Traditional Welsh clog dancing is enjoying a revival, particularly among men, according to Mr Owen.

"In England they struggle to get young lads to dance at all. It is not seen as anything male," he explained.

"In Wales the clog-stepping, especially with all the tricks and acrobatics, is seen as a macho thing.

"It is fantastic to see. Hopefully it will keep me going for a while."



SEE ALSO
Young dancers clog up The Hague
09 Jul 06 |  Europe
Pupils step up for clog classes
05 Jul 04 |  South East Wales

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