Cardigan Bay

Seagulls, storm and waves – The Sea Maidens Tale

Parent & Teacher Guidance
Seagulls, storm and waves – The Sea Maidens Tale

Branwen, Gwenllian and Llio were three very beautiful girls from the New Quay area. They lived with their gentleman father in a large mansion on the rocks above the beach. Every day, the girls would walk along the beach and listen to the small waves whispering on the breeze. 

‘Branwen, Gwenllian, Llio – the prettiest girls in the world.’ 

The waves carried the story of the girls’ beauty all over the world. Everyone was amazed to see their bright blue eyes, silky skin and long, golden hair. Their story carried through the waves and down to the depths of the sea to the mermaids and to Dylan, King of the Sea, who lived underwater in his coral and crystal castle. 

One day, Dylan decided that he would have to go to New Quay to see the beautiful girls for himself. He swam through the waves and raised his head above the water. Dylan could not believe how beautiful the girls were. After going back to his castle beneath the sea that night, he decided that he would have to have the three sisters to live with him.  

The next night, there was a frightening storm in the New Quay area. The wind whipped the waves along the beach and washed over the fishermen's boats in the harbour. The water swelled up, lapping the rocks around the mansion above and frightened everyone. Branwen thought she heard the sound of someone calling outside the mansion and decided to go to the door to see what was wrong. As soon as she opened the door, it slammed shut behind her and she disappeared into the night. Gwenllian went to see what had happened to her sister and as soon as she opened the door, it shut again and she disappeared into the night. Only Llio was left now, and as she began to worry about her sisters, she went over to the door and opened it. As soon as she did, she could feel the sea waves covering her feet and the foam on her cheeksThen she felt a hand on her shoulder – the wet hand of Dylan, King of the Sea. 

By morning, the storm had calmed down. The father got up and suddenly realised his daughters weren't there. He sent his servants down to the village to look for them and soon, one of them came back, out of breath. He had been talking to a fisherman in the village who had been out the night before looking at his boat when he saw long golden hair in the waves of the sea. The father was heartbroken. He knew that Branwen, Gwenllian and Llio had long golden hair.  

In his coral and crystal castle beneath the sea was Dylan, King of the Sea. Although he had managed to capture Branwen, Gwenllian and Llio to live with him beneath the waves, it was clear that the girls were not at all happy. They had a feeling of hiraeth – longing for their father, for New Quay and their life on land. Although Dylan had had his wish, he was not happy to see the tears in the eyes of the most beautiful girls in the world. He realised he would have to do something to comfort them. The girls could never go back to live with their father. He tried to think how he could make them part of the sea and part of the land at the same time. Then he had an idea. He turned all three into beautiful, white seagulls. Now they could fly back to land to their father by day and come back to him to his castle beneath the sea by night. 

So, every day the three gulls flew back to New Quay beach, where their father still walked back and forth every day looking for them. The three would land next to him and keep him company. The father suddenly came to realise that the three beautiful gulls were his daughters, but his longing for them still broke his heart. 

The girls also still felt their hiraeth. And they say that that is why every gull’s cry sounds so sad, even today. They are still longing for 

‘Branwen, Gwenllian, Llio  the prettiest girls in the world.’ 

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