The reality is that the Welsh language is very necessary. Three years ago, I was woofing with a host family in France to improve my French, and one day, we travelled to the beach and there we met another foreigner who turned out to be Irish. After talking to this lady, the host family kept referring to her as l'anglaise - the English woman. I explained that no, she wasn't English, and that she was in fact Irish, to which their reply was that the English and the Irish were the same. This way of viewing the British Isles seemed to be very commonplace whilst I was there. And if you think about it, it's quite strange isn't it? After all, Ireland has been independent from the United Kingdom for nearly 100 years, and there are many countries which have only gained independence much more recently than that. Countries like Estonia and Kazakhstan were part of the USSR until 1991 yet nobody ever confuses them with Russia. So why is that? One word: Language. In Ireland they now speak English whereas in Estonia they still speak Estonian, not Russian.
Thus the Welsh language is beyond important when it comes to preserving Welsh identity and distinctiveness. As the writer Martyn Ford said in the book, For Wales See England, Wales has non-conformist chapels and it has rugby and socialism, but those are not unique to Wales, whereas the language is. Whenever I've met people in Wales who are opposed to the Welsh Language they always seem to be the very same people who are opposed to Devolution, and who, dare I say it, would not object to an Iron ring being put up at Mold Castle. Chances are that if you against one thing that is Welsh, you are against all things Welsh. As the blogger Jac O the North once remarked, anti-welsh views tend to come in a boxed set. The problem that the naysayers seem to have towards the Welsh language is that it is too Welsh.
Yes there may be a minority of Welsh language naysayers who are not against all things Welsh. I once had a conversation with semi-native Welsh speaker from Southern Gwynedd who remarked that it would have been so much more useful if her Welsh Granfather had spoken Mandarin to her and not Welsh, to which the first thought to enter my mind was that people in Iceland don't groan about the fact that they speak Icelandic and how useless Icelandic is abroad.
€20,000. And put it this way, anyone who is a Welsh speaker in today's Britain, can also speak English (unless they're of pre-school age), whereas most English speakers will be monoglots. So if you're going to speak perfect English either way, what is the benefit of not speaking Welsh? The truth is, there is none.