Wynford Ellis Owen


I Wynford yn 21 oed

Danfon i’r llanc dy wynfyd – hedd y doeth
O dduw da ac iechyd;
Maddau feiau ei fywyd;
Arwain ef i’r iawn o hyn.’

(Robert Owen)

Today, in my 22nd year of recovery, I ask for nothing; expect nothing; and accept everything that comes.

Every day I pray for help to enter unto others that I may see things with their eyes; think things with their minds; and feel things with their hearts; and so grant me that I may be as kind to others as I would wish them to be kind to me.

A friend once told me when I went to see him about some problem or other, “The trouble with you, Wynford, is that you keep forgetting that you’re a genius”. A few months later, when preoccupied with some other setback, he reminded me again, “How many times do I have to tell you, Wynford, the trouble with you is that you keep forgetting that you’re a genius.” Over time, I self-consciously and reluctantly came to accept what he was saying: I am a genius! And that’s when the miracle happened for me. Once I realised that I was a genius, I realised that everyone else are geniuses as well. We’re all unique, and we all have a unique contribution to make to life’s rich tapestry.

If you can get a person to accept the way he feels; accept the way he thinks; and accept the way he is, warts and all, he will never have any problem with any addiction or any other harmful behaviour whatsoever. It’s our inability to be honest with ourselves – to accept our humanness and embrace the dark side of our psyche – that causes all the problems.

Treatment is about the way we treat people – with unconditional love and compassion. A sense of humour helps as well. I don’t take myself too seriously. Laughter, after all, is the best medicine.

Os dof fi drwy’r anialwch
rhyfeddaf fyth dy ras,
a’m henaid i lonyddwch
‘r ôl ganwaith golli’r maes;
y maglau wedi eu torri,
a’m traed yn gwbl rydd;
os gwelir fi fel hynny,
tragwyddol foli a fydd.

(Harry Siôn, Dafydd Morris, Hannah Joshua)

The Power of God is within me. The Grace of God surrounds me.

Asgob! A raslas bach a mawr!

Wynford Ellis Owen

C.E.O. of The Living Room Project, Cardiff. , The Living Room Project, Cardiff.

Community contributions

After a 40 years career as a writer, actor and director working in theatre and television, Wynford returned to college in 2006 to study for a Fd.Sc. degree in Addictions Counselling. After graduating in the summer of 2008, he worked briefly as an addictions counsellor in Rhoserchan, the drug and alcohol treatment centre above Penrhyncoch, near Aberystwyth. On the 1st of October, 2008 he started work as Chief Executive Officer of the Welsh Council on Alcohol and Other Drugs, and a corner-stone of his 3 year strategy was the establishment of Stafell Fyw Caerdydd/Living Room Cardiff, a community based Recovery Centre supporting people with addiction problems in Cardiff and surrounding areas. He was awarded the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust Fellowship for 2010 and visited some of the new recovery community centres in the U.S. which have achieved long-term recovery from severe alcohol and/or drug-related problems. A network of such centres is to be found in Vermont, Connecticut and Philadelphia, Washington D C and Virginia. Visiting these centres provided Wynford with very useful ideas on how to better build a strong “peer culture” into the Stafell Fyw Caerdydd/Living Room Cardiff project, which was officially opened on 8th September, 2011.

Wynford is married to Meira, has two daughters, Bethan and Rwth, and is a very proud grandfather to Begw, Efa, Bobi and Jac. He lives in Creigiau on the outskirts of Cardiff.

Wynford is in recovery and his sobriety date is 22nd July, 1992.

Connected with

Between The Lines is  a dynamic art project in which each subject nominates the next subject based on the principles and ideals of the project.


Nominated by: Cen Williams

Nominated in turn: Clive Wolfendale

Web site: www.livingroom-cardiff.com/