Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch ( listen)) is a large village and community on the island of Anglesey in Wales, situated on the Menai Strait next to the Britannia Bridge and across the strait from Bangor. This village has the longest place name in Europe and one of the longest place names in the world. The short form of the village's name is Llanfairpwllgwyngyll, also spelled Llanfair Pwllgwyngyll. It is commonly known as Llanfair PG or Llanfairpwll.According to the 2001 census, the population of the community is 3,040, 76% of whom speak Welsh fluently; the highest percentage of speakers is in the 10–14 age group, where 97.1% are able to speak Welsh. It is the fifth largest settlement on the island by population.
Visitors stop at the railway station to be photographed next to the station sign, visit the nearby Visitors' Centre, or have 'passports' stamped at a local shop. Another tourist attraction is the nearby Marquess of Anglesey's Column, which at a height of 27 metres (89 ft) offers views over Anglesey and the Menai Strait. Designed by Thomas Harrison, the monument celebrates the heroism of Henry Paget, 1st Marquess of Anglesey at the Battle of Waterloo.
The long form of the name is the longest officially recognised place name in the United Kingdom and one of the longest in the world, being 58 letters in length (51 letters in the Welsh alphabet, where "ch", "ng" and "ll" count as single letters).
The name means: [St.] Mary's Church (Llanfair) [in] the hollow (pwll) of the white hazel (gwyngyll) near (goger) the rapid whirlpool (y chwyrndrobwll) [and] the church of [St.] Tysilio (llantysilio) with a red cave ([a]g ogo goch).
This village was originally known as Llanfair Pwllgwyngyll (and is sometimes still referred to as Llanfairpwllgwyngyll) and was given its long name in the 19th century in an attempt to develop the village as a commercial and tourist centre (see Significance of the name below). Today the village is still signposted as Llanfairpwllgwyngyll, marked on Ordnance Survey maps as Llanfair Pwllgwyngyll and is known to locals as Llanfairpwll or simply Llanfair.The name is also seen shortened to Llanfair PG, which is sufficient to distinguish it from the many other Welsh villages with Llanfair in their names. Other variant forms use the full name but with tysilio mutated to dysilio, and/or with a hyphen between drobwll and llan. In Welsh, the initial Ll may be mutated to a single L in some contexts.
The village's long name cannot be considered an authentic Welsh-language toponym. It was artificially contrived in the 1860s to bestow upon the station the honour of having the longest name of any railway station in Britain; an early example of a publicity stunt. The village's own web site credits the name to a cobbler from the local village of Menai Bridge. According to Sir John Morris-Jones the name was created by a local tailor, whose name he did not confide, letting the secret die with him.
The eponymous St. Mary's Church.The village was originally known as 'Llanfair Pwllgwyngyll' "St Mary's church in the hollow of the white hazel." 'Pwllgwyngyll' was the name of the original medieval township where the village stands today.
The village is split into two smaller villages, Llanfairpwllgwyngyll-uchaf (Upper Llanfairpwllgwyngyll) the original part of the village and Llanfairpwllgwyngyll-isaf (Lower Llanfairpwllgwyngyll) the newer area nearer the railway station. These are occasionally referred to as Pentre Uchaf and Pentre Isaf (Upper Village and Lower Village) respectively.