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Every Seat Has a Story
Our winning entries

Over 500 of you entered, but here are our winning 12 stories who will all see their stories on a seat at Principality Stadium and tickets to watch Wales play at Principality Stadium.

Full rugby stadium


Paul Higgins, Wales vs Fiji
Regaining my confidence after my cancer diagnosis

When Paul found out he had bone cancer in his leg, his world felt like it came tumbling down. He didn't know what the future would hold, and getting on with everyday life felt hard. So, when Paul's brother-in-law, Andrew, bought him a ticket to watch Wales play at Principality Stadium, it felt like the challenge he needed to feel a sense of normality again.

Paul was so relieved when he got there that he could enjoy every minute of the experience – the atmosphere, the fans, the singing, the laughing, the cheering – he felt like himself again for a couple of hours. It was enough to inspire him to dig deep to fight the cancer and repay his brother-in-law's kindness. After a year of treatment, Paul was well enough to buy tickets for their next game together, and he's paid for both their tickets ever since to thank Andrew for bringing him to a game that was a turning point in Paul's life.

 

Boy at rugby match


Dai Cambourne, Wales vs Italy
My 10-year-old son caught the last kick of the game

Dai Cambourne and his ten-year-old son, Ellis, were excited for their day out together at Principality Stadium to bond over their shared love of Welsh rugby. They'd been plenty of times before, but little did they know their experience at this match would be one quite unlike any other.

It was the opening weekend of the Six Nations, and Wales were on for a storming win against Italy. Just as the game was drawing to a close, Josh Adams spotted a gap and went for a hat-trick. The crowd went wild, then fell silent for a final time as Leigh Halfpenny stepped up for the conversion. The ball sailed through the posts with ease. Straight towards Dai's son. Ellis, with hands any player would envy, caught it! And even better than that, another fan a few rows back caught the moment on camera, so Ellis well and truly has bragging rights to a fantastic moment and an amazing memory they'll share forever.

 

3 person close up selfie at rugby match

Donna Everitt, Wales vs Spain
Bringing Nain to her first game, 
aged 87

Donna's Nain, Betty, is the quintessential Welsh Grandmother. She's full of fun and absolutely loves Welsh sport – particularly rugby and football. So, when Donna was able to bring her Nain down from Harlech to visit Cardiff and Principality Stadium for the first time, it was a wonderfully memorable day for them both. Betty loved the whole experience – from walking to the stadium as part of the crowd to taking pictures with the mounted police. And when they got to their seats in the stands, her face was a picture of excitement. It might have taken Betty 87 years to get there, but now she was in Principality Stadium, and she was enjoying every second of it.

It's a day Donna and her Nain still talk about often, and they're making plans to visit again, once restrictions are lifted, to celebrate Betty's 90th birthday this year – she can't wait!

 

Young boys selfie with rugby pitch in the background


Thomas Kendall, Wales vs England
Helping Grandad tick off
his bucket list


In 2009, when Thomas Kendall was eight years old, his Grandad, Richard, was diagnosed with dementia. But rather than shrinking back from the sad news, and being an adventurer at heart, Thomas' grandad was inspired to write a bucket list of all the things he wanted to do while he still could. One of the items on the list was to see Wales play at the home of Welsh rugby.

Despite only being a young boy, Thomas has vivid memories of seeing his grandad's eyes lighting up with excitement as they took to their seats. The choir belted out all the rugby songs, and the crowd sang the national anthems at the top of their voices. His grandfather clearly felt so alive witnessing this spectacle. He was in his element. Thomas is so glad he had the opportunity to make those special memories with his grandad, and Thomas will always hold them close to his heart. 

 

3 women stood in front of rugby pitch with Welsh hats on


Maureen McColl, Wales vs England
Going viral on social media after attending my first game at the age of 80

In 2019, at 80 years old, Maureen McColl visited Principality Stadium for the very first time. To see Wales play England, no less. Maureen and her sister, Nancy, enjoyed the game immensely, but as it ended and Maureen waited in her seat, something unexpected happened. A young man and woman who were friends with Aron Wainwright asked Maureen if she'd like to meet him. The next thing Maureen knew, she was standing at the side of the pitch with her new friends, surrounded by half the Wales team, who treated her like a star! 

Someone took a picture that went viral on social media, and all of a sudden, Maureen was catapulted into her 15 minutes of fame! She appeared on the radio and Welsh News and got an invitation to watch a live recording of a popular rugby TV show, where she met all the stars, including Doddie Weir! And it didn't stop there; Maureen was given tickets to the Wales v Ireland match at Principality Stadium, where she watched Wales win the Grand Slam.

 

Couple selfie at rugby match

Tanya Phillips, Wales v Australia
Attending a match helped me regain my confidence after becoming disabled

Rugby had been a big part of Tanya Phillips' life since childhood, having played herself and following both the men's and women's teams on TV and at Principality Stadium. But 11 years ago, she became disabled, and she found the idea of attending a game in person increasingly difficult. Tanya felt part of her connection to rugby had been unfairly taken away.

However, five years ago, Tanya and her husband did a lot of research into Principality Stadium's accessibility and, satisfied that they would be well catered for, they bought tickets. The experience they had was amazing. With facilities designed with independence in mind and stewards on hand to make sure everything was as easy as possible, attending that match was a turning point for Tanya. It gave her back the thrill of watching rugby and the confidence to try more new things. She felt like there was still part of her that could enjoy the life she once had and was so grateful to all the stewards for helping her feel normal.

 

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Continue reading our winners stories #7-12 >

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