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Review and Video of Old Radnor Barn, Talgarth, Powys

Posted by Paul Miles at 03:10 on Wednesday 29 May 2013

Paul Miles enjoys views of a well-tended garden and tastes eggs from the owners’ hens at this converted 400-year old stone barn in the historic little town of Talgarth, Powys

>> For availability and booking, see our full listing for Old Radnor Barn

>> Lynne Groves from Old Radnor Barn is a Brecon Beacons National Park Ambassador

A view across the lovely forget-me-not-fringed garden. Photo: Paul MilesA view across the lovely forget-me-not-fringed garden. Photo: Paul Miles

The Setting
Apple and plum trees, borders of lavender and roses: this B&B in the heart of Talgarth is set in a third of an acre of land that cleverly screens a car park that was once the train station yard, where coal was stored for steam trains. The railway closed in the 1960s to be replaced by an A-road.

Watch our video of Old Radnor Barn:

The Rooms
Four decent-sized bedrooms are large enough for a sofa or two armchairs as well as a comfortable queen-size double (or two singles). All have their own shower-rooms (two en-suite), sleekly decorated. Spacious showers have fold-down wooden seats. The downstairs – two bedrooms, living- and dining room and garden – is all wheelchair accessible. Furniture is mostly modern pine but one room has funky patchwork armchairs. Downstairs rooms have good-sized windows, with handmade oak frames, that look out onto the garden. There’s a TV/radio/DVD and free wi-fi in each bedroom. 

The cheerful yellow twin room. Photo: Paul MilesThe cheerful yellow twin room. Photo: Paul Miles

Stephen with his happy hens. Photo: Paul MilesStephen with his happy hens. Photo: Paul MilesThe Food
Lynne and Stephen run a tea-garden on their lawns, where happy day-trippers enjoy home-baking in summer. Lynne’s leek soup is the best I’ve tasted. A large Welsh breakfast comes with sausage, thick slices of dry-cured bacon, an egg from their own hens, potatoes and tomato. When in season, vegetables are all from their own plot that Stephen gardens organically and all preserves are homemade, mostly from their own fruit. Evening meals are available on request.

The Activities
A short walk from the B&B, the centre of Talgarth – more village than town – has a beautifully restored watermill, made famous on BBC’s ‘Village SOS’. You can take part in a ‘miller’s experience’ day, learning about the mill machinery, grinding flour and making bread, and there’s a pleasant café.

Otherwise, there are plenty of more energetic activities, such as walking and cycling. Talgarth held its first walking festival in the foothills of the Black Mountains in May 2013 and there are many paths in the hills and valleys around.

Five mountain biking routes start from the car park in front of Old Radnor Barn, including one 32-miler known as the Killer. As well as arduous off-road challenges for experts, there are on-road routes, too. National Cycle Route 8 goes right past the door. If you don’t have a bike, you can rent one or you could drive off in their two-person, open-sided electric vehicle – a Renault Twizy (£45 for the day). Anglers can enjoy salmon and trout fishing.

Pots and cans in the garden. Photo: Paul MilesPots and cans in the garden. Photo: Paul MilesThe Green
Rooms are well insulated and double-glazed and A-rated appliances are being phased in. Waste is recycled, with all organic waste used on the compost. Showers are water-efficient. Most food is local.

Arriving by public transport
The nearest train station is Abergavenny, 20 miles away, costing nearly £40 in a taxi or you could follow the towpath along the Mon & Brec canal as far as Brecon and then continue along country lanes – steep at times – on National Cycle Route 8 all the way to the door. It’s possible to reach Talgarth by bus from Abergavenny but it’s a two-bus journey via Brecon of over two hours. Otherwise, Lynne and Stephen will collect you from the station with prior notice. 

Top Tip
Choose a downstairs room for best views of the main attraction – the garden – through bigger windows.

Good for anyone with mobility problems or those who want an easy-to-find B&B and plan to get out and keep busy all day.

>> For availability and booking, see our full listing for Old Radnor Barn

A clutch of freshly-laid eggs. Photo: Paul MilesA clutch of freshly-laid eggs. Photo: Paul Miles


Blogs posts categorised as 'Reviews' have been written with the support of one or more of the following: accommodation owner, activity provider, operator, equipment supplier, tourist board, protected landscape authority or other destination-focussed authority. The reviewer retains full editorial control of the work, which has been written in the reviewer's own words based on their experience of the accommodation, activity, equipment or destination.

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