Barmouth it the quintessential traditional seaside holiday town and like many traditional seaside holidays, it comes in for a bit of a stick from time to time. The town has its fair share of kiss me quick hats and candy floss stalls. But to deny Barmouth’s obvious draw as a traditional seaside holiday destination would be foolish. And anyway I quite like candy floss and I don’t get kissed nearly often enough so there’s no harm in those hats.
“With a fine sea view in front, the mountains behind, the glorious estuary running eight miles inland, and Cadair Idris within compass of a day’s walk, Barmouth can always hold its own against any rival.” William Wordsworth
If you visit on a sunny day like we did last week, you can’t help but fall in love with the place. The beach is of course fantastic and has retained is Blue Flag for cleanliness again this year. The fish and chips are still as tasty as ever and the ice cream is still cold.
Look closer and there’s more to enjoy. The Mawddach Trail along the estuary is one of the most beautiful cycle routes in the UK. The old town on the rock is a fascinating mix of ally ways and steep steps. The cliffs above were the first acquisition of the then fledgling National Trust and offer stunning views across Cardigan Bay.
The history of this traditional seaside holiday town is also fascinating. Ty Gwyn, an old timber frame house built by Gruffudd Vaughan during the 15th century, was a meeting place for the allies of Henry VII during the War of the Roses.
At this time ship building was the lifeblood of the town but this changed during Victorian times however with the opening of the new Aberystwyth and Welsh Coast Railway 1867. The ever impressive Barmouth Bridge carried the new industrial working class of the Midlands in their thousands to the town. A summer pilgrimage of simple old fashioned fun which is still enjoyed by many.
I enjoyed an article in the local paper where an old gentleman recalled his time at the officer training camp at Barmouth during the Second World War. He recalled how he and his fellow trainees would stand on Barmouth platform each Sunday, waiting the midlands train which would bring the female workers of the munitions factories for their annual break. “There was always a rush to carry the bags of the prettier girls as they got off the train.” Romance of course, would often follow. And genuine tears of sorrow would be wept one week later as the return train pulled back out of the station. The young officers wouldn’t stray too far from the station afterwards however. There was, of course, another train arriving in the afternoon.
If you would like to visit Barmouth, have a look at our nearby properties…..Holiday Cottages near Barmouth