Allan Shiers – harp maker

8th July 2016  |  ALUMNI | AWARD WINNERS

Allan ShiersWinner of the 2016 HCA Maker of the Year

Master harp maker Allan Shiers, of Telynau Teifi, was awarded the HCA Maker of the Year.

Since completing a five-year apprenticeship in 1978, Allan has spent almost 40 years sharing his knowledge and craft. In 2005 he established a not-for-profit community business, which has made more than 900 harps, to ensure a future for harp-making in Wales and he has continued to encourage younger harp makers through apprenticeships, workshops, and masterclasses.

A review in the Cambria Magazine said: “We are vividly reminded that the harp making tradition is alive and well through the tireless work of Allan Shiers…”


The HCA income frees you up to do some things you would not otherwise been able to do – the ideas that lurked in the long grass but really needed to be given time. I’ve completed my new idea for a new semi-tone device and written up a dossier for it – so far we’ve a had a lot of interest from all over the world. We also used the publicity from the HCA Award for our website/social media and had an article in the local newspaper. After 40 years making harps, it was quite a special moment for me to have some recognition for all the hard work and skills passed on.

On a related note it has stimulated wider conversation about Wales’ cultural heritage and how it is valued.


Photo: Allan Shiers being presented with his certificate by Robin Wood MBE, Former HCA Chair