Y Parchedig Emyr Ddrwg

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The story of Reverend Emyr Owen: the North Wales vicar who was imprisoned in the 1980s for mutilating the corpses of his male parishioners.

Winner – Best Single Documentary, BAFTA Cymru 2022


In 1984, North Wales Police investigated a spate of malicious letters in the west coast town of Tywyn. A handwriting expert led them to Emyr Owen – a popular local vicar from the town’s Bethel Chapel. But when they searched Emyr’s home for evidence, they found photographs pointing to something far more sinister…

Emyr, it emerged, had removed the private parts of three male parishioners after they passed away. Their bodies, left in his charge before burial, had been stripped and maimed – as Emyr believed they would find salvation once they were free of shame.

This award-winning documentary revisits Emyr’s story, talking to behavioural experts and investigators from the original case. We explore his religious upbringing, and the inner conflict of a man torn between his faith and sexuality.
The result is a fascinating portrait of a tortured individual, born in the wrong place and time, who was driven to unspeakable acts by doctrine and repression.


SEE ALSO: The Rev – a feature-length English language version, bringing Emyr’s story to a wider audience.

The Rev