The olde town of Bridgend
The town of Bridgend, in Wales, is not one that springs to mind when holiday destinations are discussed, yet this attractive and historic town has much to offer.
Bridgend sits in an attractive part of Wales mid-way between Cardiff and Swansea, this is an area that has been inhabited for many years as evidenced by the discovery of ancient burial sites in the area, and the Romans were known to have settled in Bridgend during their lengthy occupation of these islands.
Bridgend gained a reputation of the worst sort in recent years with news stories telling of sensational 'Bridgend multiple suicides' in the town, yet geographically this was taking a liberty of sorts and the tales were somewhat over-sensationalised.
The modern Bridgend town is one that features all the facilities expected of town of this size, with good schools, shops and transport connections, and the local councils have grand plans for redevelopment in an area that was hit very hard with the closure of the Welsh coalfields, an industry that sustained much of the country, in recent years.
Like many towns that relied on such industry for work and income, unemployment is high in Bridgend, yet the local populace is very proud of its heritage.
Overlooking Bridgend town centre is the magnificent and haunting ruin of Newcastle Castle, a fortress built in the early years of the 12 th century at a time when warring factions were common.