Any decent boozers in Blaenau Ffestiniog?
About 1987, so went to the nearest pub in the town, barman slopped the drink accross the bar, and dropped the fiver change in the slop.
Gang of local came to sit next to us closer than a gay clubs clientele, all speaking welsh, the rest of the pub was empty felt very unwelcome, went outside and my car had been painted green, got angry and went inside, and as an angry cyclist shouted, WHO PAINTED MY CAR GREEN, a man mountain of a man stood up,built from pure slate miner stock walked over, and said I PAINTED YOUR CAR GREEN.
Me in a quivering quiet voice just said , drying lovely , before makeing a hasty retreat.
Dont leave any bike secured to roof or rear of vehicle, or on show in a vehicle, as bike thieves are operating everywehere , and travel round riding spots at night.
Ps it was a joke about the car being painted green.Posted 4 years ago
I’m from near the area. Most of the family are from round there, and they don’t drink in Ffestiniog!
I ask because, if your English, I wouldn’t recommend it. But since your Welsh, I still wouldn’t recommend it!
Not a nice place. Lot of crime, and you won’t get a warm welcome.
Go to Porthmadog instead. Not far, and much nicer.Posted 4 years ago
Me and the wife stayed near Porthmadog for a week last May, and drove up to BF for a looksy. We didn’t get out. Only going there so I can full out of bed straight onto the DH course (slight exaggeration there). Think it will be choosing the best of a bad bunch…hope to be pleasantly surprised on the pub front though.Posted 4 years agodunerMember
I stayed there a couple of years ago (before antur was open), was riding coed y brenin, snowdon and penmachno so just looked on a map and thought that town is in the middle we’ll stay there. Realised upon arrival it was no betws y coed but had a curry and a beer and everything was fine, we were in there about half an hour before we realised everyone was talking welsh. From memory we could only find one pub in the center.Posted 4 years ago
landofgiants – you posted your last response while I was typing! Tremadog is where we stayed – think we ate and drunk in the Golden Fleece – great pub!
I’m going to be with 3 Englishmen and 1 Sri Lankan, and my accent ain’t anywhere near as strong as it used to be – should be interesting!
As DH day looking cancelled I would look elsewhere but feel bad for bailing on the B&B so late as they haven’t taken deposits – pay when there. Too late to find alternative accom for 5 now anyway….Posted 4 years ago
Hey, like anywhere, you can find trouble if your not careful.
Since Antur will probably be shut, you can get your adventure by having a right old knees up in Ffestiniog!
If your after a quiet boozer, where you won’t get stabbed for your Gore-tex coat, then Penmachno ain’t far. Nice country pub there, where my uncle drinks called the Eagles. The trails round there might be rideable too.Posted 4 years agoiain1775Subscriber
Hahahahahahaha surely this is a troll?
Nope none, there wasn’t even anywhere to eat when we where there other than an (admittedly very good, with nuclear power station cooling lake sized Cod*) sit down chippy
Curry house had closed down a few months ago, although half the locals hadn’t actually noticed and where still recommending it
Hotel, in the centre where we stayed, opposite above chippy, and I forget its name, was nice, and staff friendly and helpful (possibly feeling a bit sensitive round us as some of our party had their bikes stolen the day before), we just had a few in there, not exactly lively but alright
Was recommended another bar round the corner, by the guys at Antur, they have live bands on at weekend but when we went round to check it out it was £5 just to get in and bouncer openly admitted it was ‘full of kids and a bit shit to be honest’
Give Antur a bell. They are local and will gladly recommend some places, and places best avoided they are real keen to develop the town as an Mtb destination and that seems to extend to making sure we enjoy the night after
(*i know it’s not afresh water fish which made the size of it even more unexplainable)Posted 4 years ago
(** we experienced no trouble just an undertone of bored teenagers that may shout something in a language you don’t understand whilst trying to look ‘ard, just don’t leave bikes or phones unattended in case)
(*** it’s at least as friendly than Neath nr Afan, which isn’t saying much)rudebwoyMember
Blaenau is a working/non town- underneath all this mis informed prejudice,plenty of good people, Kings Head is a friendly place, the Meirion Vaults on the high street is more traditional– as for speaking welsh– funny that , speaking their own language, but if you do interact , most people will respond– just try and leave your uninformed prejudices at the border….Posted 4 years agomikewsmithSubscriber
as for speaking welsh– funny that , speaking their own language, but if you do interact , most people will respond– just try and leave your uninformed prejudices at the border….
I’ve had some incredible and brilliant hospitality in North Wales and some frankly racist and xenophobic behaviour too. It’s not the Welsh speaking that gets to people it’s the sudden switch when you walk in, been in places where the barman practically went round the entire pub to see if he could serve anybody before us, blatant anti english comments etc. With some mates we were asked outside for a fight, while we sat minding our own business. Like everywhere part of the population has a chip on their shoulder and an axe to grind.
Like I say it varies. There are places in England, Scotland & Wales I wouldn’t go to day or night.Posted 4 years agobobloMember
The comments about BF are not anti Welsh, the place is a sh1thole with a side order of anti English. This is characterised by using the Welsh language to ensure English only speakers are excluded/intimidated.
Defend it all you like, it’s pure anti English i.e. racism carried out in a town that should be gassed/levelled.
BTW, enjoy your stay 🙂Posted 4 years agorebel12Member
Been to Blaenau plenty of times, stayed (once) about 5 years ago – can’t remember the name of the B&B.
Honestly can’t see what anyone’s problem is with the place. Yes its grey, industrial, rains quite a bit and is a poor community but it’s also got a unique character that’s unlike anywhere else in the world and you’re just as likely to get your bike pinched or get into a fight in any of the UK’s major cities if that’s what you’re after.
The pubs are very Welsh, people speak Welsh – it’s their first language for many (and they also speak it at home too). I find if you’re friendly and chat to people like anywhere else then people tend to be friendly back.
I quite like the place to be honest, it’s got a certain gritty character you won’t find anywhere else and it’s right in the middle of some fantastic riding, walking and industrial history.Posted 4 years agomartinhutchSubscriber
I’m English – and have got no problem with the Welsh speaking Welsh. If you’re in a French bar, do you feel excluded and intimidated by all that nasty French speaking?
However, on occasion I’ve entered an establishment in North Wales, seen the locals chatting merrily in English, then switch seamlessly to Welsh when they realise I’m there. 🙂
Half the N Wales locals appear to have nothing good to say about BF. I’m sure it’s got a nice community there, but if you’re on holiday or only there for the night, you might struggle to find it.
I would echo recommendations of Porthmadog and Tremadog. Breakfast in Eric Jones’ cafe under the crags…sunlight dappling the rock…happy days.Posted 4 years agoSprocketJockeyMember
I’m also from the area originally and previous posters are correct that it has a bad rep locally, some of it admittedly justified.
But…it’s an isolated town with a long and proud industrial heritage which has been comprehensively crapped on, and has all the problems associated with that… this isn’t a uniquely Welsh / anti English problem – there are towns like that all over the UK – just not that many of them have a national park and top class MTBing on their doorstep.
I’d guess that some of the residents of those other towns would probably also get a bit chippy at groups of strangely dressed people turning up with bikes costing more than they’ll see in a year.
As above, AS is an effort to boost the local economy. I’d say give it a chance – ask the B&B / AS for recommendations on places to drink and eat – there are some decent places in some of the outlying villages even if you can’t find anything suitable in Ffestiniog itself. You may be pleasantly surprised and you can always bail for Porthmadog if it all goes wrong.Posted 4 years agorudebwoyMember
nice post rebel12 –sums the place up well– i also like places with proper character –just an aside , There was a strike in the quarries there in 1985/86- that lasted for seven months- we did a benefit gig in the Queens hotel , after initial reticence to the ‘strange’ music we were playing, the ice broke and a great night was had– a small but proud community, that has suffered greatly from industrial decline/isolation– when they supplied the slates for millions of roofs, everything was hunky chunky, but with cheap alternatives, imports, they became less profitable and the inevitable happened- you now have a tourist quarry, still more than is left in llanberis, the bethesda one is still going producing the same quantity of slate but with a tenth of the workforce that were employed in its heyday– they had a Three Year strike 110 years ago– the effects are still in the local culture….
This bollocks about speaking english and collectivly switching to welsh on the appearance of a strange face is just that….. people switch easily between the languages, some older people will be more at ease in their native tongue–
Boblo– you are obviously a well balanced soul–chips on both shoulders…Posted 4 years agoPigfaceMember
Rock town isn’t as bad as it looks 😆 if you want really backward Welsh places some of the valley villages like Markam take the biscuit.
Come on if you lived in perpetual gloom surrounded by the spoil heaps you might not be to balanced.
The Welsh language thing is very odd, I am not a Welsh speaker and have been abused for that in Bangor, call yourself Welsh but cant speak it etc etc I was born in Tredegar how much more Welsh can you be 😆Posted 4 years ago
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