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Bridgend – A prehistoric past and promising future
Bridgend is a small county in south Wales and got its name from the original bridge that crossed the River Ogmore.
Like other counties in Wales there are signs that the area may have been settled before the Romans arrived, with prehistoric burial mounds found in the region.
Following the Norman conquest of England in 1066, many Norman barons arrived in Wales and created what would later be known as the Welsh Marches. Newcastle Castle was built in 1106 by Robert Fitzhamon and Ogmore Castle by William de Londres in 1116 (two of the recognised castles in the area).
Bridgend grew mainly as an agricultural town, although the discovery of coal north of the town in the 17th century played a part in its development. It had an important role during the Second World War for its prisoner of war camp at Island Farm and a very large munitions factory at Waterton (employing 40,000 workers at its peak).
Whilst Bridgend has experienced mixed fortunes in its economy, it seems to be successfully making the transition from the decline of traditional industries (like coal mining).
Reasons to visit Bridgend
Bridgend is a fairly small county and this is reflected in the attractions found there in comparison to many other Welsh counties, but there are some places that are worth a visit, such as: Bryngarw Country Park (natural Parkland and Woods), the Church of St Aengus and the Merthyr Mawr Sand Dunes. There are also some Golf Clubs in the area, and of course some castles to check out.
Entertainment and Dining in Bridgend
There are some restaurants in the town centre, but if you enjoy the nightlife (the main nightclub is “Sax”). There are four Beefeater restaurants in Bridgend and plenty of takeaways (Chinese and Indian food). You can also find a Domino’s Pizza as well.
Accommodation in Bridgend
There are approximately ten hotels in Bridgend, which include two Premier Inns and the Best Western Heronston Hotel, which has good reviews and facilities. There are of course a number of Guest Houses and B&Bs and the prices should suit most budgets.