HUNDREDS of people attended the unveiling in Chepstow of a colourful artwork remembering opera singer Karl Daymond.

Twenty-four tiles decorated by members of Chepstow Mencap - where Mr Daymond ran weekly singing sessions until his untimely death in August 2017, aged 52 - adorn a steel frame at the town’s Castle Dell orchard, depicting things Mr Daymond loved, and some of the songs he sang.

It also includes a poem - The Singing Club And Us - from Chepstow Mencap, describing how Mr Daymond, “a great big man with a great big smile”,came into group members’ lives in 2014.

It explains how his sessions with Chepstow Castle Singing Club enabled those supported by Chepstow Mencap to “experience the joy that music brings” while making “each individual feel so special”.

The unveiling took place as part of the programme at the annual Chepstow Wassail and Mari Lwyd celebrations, which Mr Daymond had become involved with prior to his death.

Dr Glyn Jones, who lives in Chepstow - a friend of Mr Daymond and a member of one of the singing groups he rehearsed - said it was a lovely occasion.

“Chepstow Castle Singing Club, Mencap and myself were so pleased and glad that the organisers of the Wassail and Mari Lwyd, Tim Ryan and Mike Lewis, allowed us to have this ceremony on what is a very busy day for them,” said Dr Jones.

A similar memorial to Mr Daymond has been erected at the town's bandstand orchard.

Dr Jones said the idea of the artwork sprang from a wedding anniversary trip with wife Jan to Honfleur in Normandy, France, where they came upon the Jardin des Personnalités, where the town’s famous sons and daughters, and notables with a connection to the place, are remembered.

“We didn’t have to say much to each other - this is where we got the inspiration,” said Dr Jones, who added that one of the memorials was a frame with painted tiles on it, by children in memory of their music master.

“I approached the arts club at Chepstow Mencap and they took on the project.

“The tiles were donated by Robert Price Builders in the town, and Homebase provided the frame, paint, brushes, cable ties, adhesive.

“Cemaes Evans, a farmer and Blacksmith at Bwlch, built the frames on which the tiles are hung.

"It's lovely to be able to remember Karl like this, because he was a big part of the community in Chepstow. it was quite an emotional occasion."

Sue Nicholson, who chairs Chepstow Mencap, called Mr Daymond "magical".

"He was so community-minded. I don't think people realise the amount of things he was involved with," she said.

"He was such a support to us. The difference he made to our ladies and gentlemen was huge.

"He got the best out of our people. He gave them confidence and joy.

"The singing club we have has continued since he died, and this is a massive legacy."