Introducing…The Skirrid Inn, Llangfihangel Crucornau

7 October 2022|Tags: , , , , , , |

The first in a series of blogs introducing some of the most historic, characterful and interesting pubs in the south Wales valleys. The Skirrid Inn In the small village of Llangfihangel Crucornau, between Abergavenny and Pandy on the road to Hereford, is one of the - if not the - oldest pub in Wales. The Skirrid Inn, deriving its name from the Anglicised version of the pair of nearby Ysgyryd peaks, can trace its origins back almost a millennium. In 1175, the Skirrid Inn was frequented over Christmas by William de Braose who was in the area looking for revenge for [...]

Introducing our Raymond Williams tour speakers

10 August 2022|Tags: , , , , |

The full list of speakers on our Raymond Williams Centenary bus tour on 15 October 2022, in partnership with the Raymond Williams Foundation, have been announced. Jude Rogers Jude, originally from Swansea and now resident in the Black Mountains, is one of the UK’s leading arts and culture feature writers, with experience interviewing high-profile names for media including The Guardian, Observer, Elle, In-Style, Cosmopolitan, The New Statesman, and The Sunday Times. Jude is about to publish her brand new book The Sound of Being Human: How Music Shapes Our Lives on White Rabbit. Darren Chetty Born in Swansea, Darren has [...]

Raymond Williams Centenary bus tour – 15.10.22

9 August 2022|Tags: , , , , |

INTRODUCTION Raymond Williams was born in Pandy near Abergavenny in 1921 and the Raymond Williams Foundation (RWF) is rounding off its 2021-22 Centenary celebrations with a bus tour, curated and hosted by us at Valleys Ale Trails, of locations in south Wales related to Williams’ life and works on Saturday 15 October 2022. WHO WAS RAYMOND WILLIAMS? Raymond Williams was one of the C20th’s greatest cultural philosophers and socialist thinkers. In a three year period in a prolific writing career Williams published two seminal, iconic intellectual texts – Culture and Society (1958) and The Long Revolution (1961) – that sandwiched [...]

Welsh Pub Names (part 1)

19 February 2019|Tags: , , , , |

In part one of this blog Dylan Jones from Valleys Ale Trails and Dylan’s Tours of Wales examines the rich heritage of Welsh language pub names, including several in the south Wales valleys. The closure of the Parc y Lan Inn at Llanddewi Velfrey near Narberth in 2015 was another blow not only to the number of pubs remaining open in Pembrokeshire but signifying the almost total extinction of Welsh names on inn signs in this corner of Wales.  Many beautiful Welsh pub names have been anglicised and replaced with English even in the heartlands of Welsh-speaking Wales Thankfully [...]

Welsh Pub Names (part 2)

14 February 2019|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

In this blog Dylan Jones from Valleys Ale Trails and Dylan’s Tours of Wales examines the rich heritage of Welsh language pub names. Part one can be found here. The most common inn sign in Wales (and also in England) is The Red Lion or Y Llew Coch in Welsh with over sixty located throughout the country, with Flintshire having the most.  The Red Lion appeared on the coat of arms of John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster who during the 14th century was one of the most important and influential men in the country and founder of the [...]

Pub As The Hub

19 January 2019|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

In this blog Valleys Ale Trails founder Russell Todd reflects on how important pubs were in his community development career. For the last 16 years I have been working in community development (CD) in various roles across Wales. I fell into it really, as many of us in the sector do, but I have been extremely lucky that it has taken me to a huge number of diverse communities all across Wales. It has been a priviliege to work with different communities to help them fashion a future that is different to their past. The work has shaped me, [...]

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