- Estimated Gypsy population: 3,000. In 1996 - the date of the last formal count-there were 489 caravans recorded (a drop from earlier figures), of which 36 were on unauthorized encampments. For most legislative purposes, Wales is part of the United Kingdom, while the Welsh Assembly in Cardiff has only limited powers. Legislation passed in the London Parliament generally applies in Wales.Gypsies probably arrived in Wales for the first time during the 16th century. The first use of the Welsh term Sipsiwn (Gypsies) can be found in a poem composed by Morris Kyffin at the end of that century. The first official record of Gypsies recorded in Wales dates from 1579 and refers to the arrest of Gypsies in the then county of Radnor. A Romany named Abraham Wood arrived in Wales around 1730. He is said to have brought the violin to Wales, and his descendants included many well-known musicians. Other families that came to Wales and have spent a long time there include the Ingrams and some of the Lees and Prices. They are classed as Welsh Gypsies even when they nomadize outside the country.Gypsies from Europe arrived in Wales in 1906, but they were kept under strict police supervision, before being escorted back into England and deported from Hull.The last known speaker of Romani in Wales, Manfri Wood, died around 1968. Derek Tipler met a group of Romani-speaking Welsh Gypsies in Caernarvonshire in 1950, but it is not known whether any of them are still alive. The dialect was recorded by John Sampson. Many of the Welsh Gypsies have moved into houses. Others continue to travel in caravans and visit England and Scotland. The caravan-dwelling population of Wales today includes Irish Travelers and, in south Wales, descendants of marriages between English and Welsh Gypsies.The Welsh Assembly commissioned a Review of Service Provision for Gypsies, which was published in April 2003. It made 52 recommendations including reestablishing the twice yearly counts and making local authorities responsible to provide or facilitate sites. In October 2005, the Cardiff city council organized a Gypsy and Traveller Awareness Day to help "dispel stereotypes and myths" about the community.
Historical dictionary of the Gypsies . Donald Kenrick.