roadside rock revival bid
But recently the rockface has been chipped away and this prompted
people who remember it to contact the BBC. They want to see
the music legend's rock again, as does a man responsible for
painting it more than 40 years ago.
rock before it was chipped away after it had been freshly
painted There are calls for a well-known landmark, which
had a link to the King of Rock and Roll, to be rebuilt.
roadside rock, daubed with the name Elvis, had for decades
greeted drivers as they made their way home to the coast
Hefin, from Borth, a former head of drama at BBC Wales, and
his friend David Meredith, from Llanuwchllyn, near Bala, painted
the rock in 1962. They had written 'Elis' on the rock in support
of a politician, but days later their handy work had been
altered to read, 'Elvis'. We went back some days later to
admire our work and damnation, someone had changed Elis into
Elvis David Meredith The Elvis Rock lies on council land just
inside the Powys border on the A44 in the Plynlimon range.
was the 1962 by-election for the Montgomeryshire seat after
the death of the Liberal Party's Clement Davies," said Mr
Hefin, who worked for the BBC for 35 years. "On a summer's
night in June we decided to paint the rock Elis - after Islwyn
Ffowc Elis who was standing for Plaid Cymru in the county.
borrowed David's father's car, which was highly recognisable
as he was the most respected minister in Aberystwyth, and
we took off.
balaclavas we set about our task - we wore balaclavas because
writing graffiti in those days was very frowned upon." Mr
Hefin added: "We wrote Elis in red and surrounded it in green
- the colours of Plaid Cymru and Wales. You could see the
sign for at least a mile away in the daylight. "I think there
should be a campaign to bring it back."
Meredith, a retired teacher originally from Aberystwyth, said
the pair were desperate for Mr Ffowc Elis to win the seat.
Mr Hefin finds two of the original pieces tha
made up the Elvis Rock "We saw this wonderful rock," said
Mr Meredith. "It's not often that a rock presents itself in
such a way and we decided to paint Elis on it. "We went back
some days later to admire our work and damnation, someone
had changed Elis into Elvis."
Meredith added: "We never mentioned it to Islwyn Ffowc Elis,
but I'm sure he would have been pleased to have been associated
politician and novelist died last year, aged 79. The BBC's
Where I Live website in mid Wales has received several emails
from people who remember the rock. One person who emailed
in said: "It has been sadly missed. Last year the rock was
still in the same spot but it was in pieces."
commented: "Perhaps now would be a good time to reinstate
it with everything that is happening with Elvis. I do not
condone graffiti, but this rock was a Welsh national monument."
County Council, which owns the land where the rock is located,
said it was unaware the Elvis Rock had been chipped away.
Source: BBC, 1 Feb 2005)