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Last Updated: Thursday, 5 August, 2004, 18:36 GMT 19:36 UK
Learner prize for language convert
Lois Arnold
Lois Arnold was awards the Welsh Learner of the Year prize
An English-born researcher has been named as Welsh language learner of the year at the National Eisteddfod.

Lois Arnold began learning the language six years ago after moving to Abergavenny in Monmouthshire.

She has since become so confident in the language that she now tutors adults who want to learn.

Ms Arnold was awarded the Welsh Leaner of the Year prize for her contribution to the language since learning the skill.

The mental health researcher, who has also written and published a book of short stories for Welsh learners said the award had come "unexpected".

"My life has changed completely since learning Welsh," she said.

"I wasn't expecting this but it has happened and it is fantastic.

"I have had a big welcome from the Welsh community."

Ms Arnold, who has been tutoring adult learners in the former Gwent area said she began to learn the langauge after moving to the area after being raised in Steveage in Hertfordshire.

'Growing'

"I first started to learn Welsh when I moved here.

"I was very lucky to live in this area because the provision is very good here for people who want to learn Welsh."

"I felt I wanted to be able to speak the language of the country I was living in, be able to watch TV and listen to radio and read things," she told BBC Wales.

"I'm passing it on to other people because there are so many wanting to learn Welsh.

"It's really growing, especially in this area."





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