Sculptor Rubin Eynon has produced a model version of the bronze statue of Rebecca Riots leader Twm Carnabwth to be placed outside Caffi Beca at Efailwen on the main A478 road between Narberth and Cardigan.

And the maquette itself – as it is called – will be on display at Caffi Beca on Wednesday evening, July 17, so that whoever might be interested can share their opinions with Rubin, the Neath based sculptor.

In 1839, agricultural workers across West Wales started rioting in protest against high levels of taxation. Toll-gates were the symbol of taxes and bore the brunt of the action. The riots were always led by somebody called ‘Rebecca’, and the rioters - often dressed in women’s clothing - were referred to as ‘her daughters’ (‘Merched Beca). In 1844 an Act of Parliament was passed to amend turnpike laws in Wales.

Twm Carnabwth was the leader of the Rebecca Riots when the tollgate at Efailwen was destroyed on three occasions in 1839. Thomas Rees was a larger than life figure and as there are no photographs of him the sculptor is free to use his imagination. Though a few oral descriptions have survived to provide a guideline.

Rubin is keen to capture the ferocity of the leader who led the beleaguered farmers of the area to destroy what they saw as a hindrance and a symbol of oppression.

The exhibition will be open from 7pm onwards and the date coincides with the last attack on the tollgate after which the turnpike trust decided there was no point in erecting a fourth gate.

The organisers have vowed to raise £60,000 of which almost a third has been raised. As part of the fundraising programme a limited number of renowned Cardigan artist Meirion Jones’ depiction of the attack on the gate will be on sale. The price of a framed version of the painting entitled ‘Whalu’r Iet yn Shils’ will be £250.

Both Rubin and Meirion will be present at the display as will, no doubt, some of the Rebeccaites - dressed in their shawls and borrowed undergarments - celebrating the destruction of the gate.