For locals and town visitors to Bridgend, Christmas has come early…. The Old Castle Inn in Nolton Street reopened today 17th December following a sympathetic £168,000 upgrade by Heineken owned Star Pubs & Bars1.
For Bridgend residents, Katie Stanley and her husband Geraint it is the realisation of a dream to run their own pub. Prior to taking on The Old Castle Inn, Katie had been a business customer services manager for energy supplier, SSE. Katie will run the pub day to day, supported by Geraint and a new team.
Katie says: “Taking on The Old Castle Inn was a case of the right pub at the right time. Geraint and I had discussed running our own pub for years. On the back of lockdown and our children having just left school, it seemed the perfect time to take the plunge. I believe life’s too short; you’ve just got to run with a dream if you have one. We’re both people people and service focussed so this opportunity is our chance to do what we love. More importantly, we are passionate about creating a fabulous welcoming pub that customers can call their own.
“Having grown up in Bridgend, I knew The Old Castle Inn, but had never been in it. I love the location and its cosy welcoming character, which has been retained. We are really excited to be opening the doors, meeting customers, and getting to know them. We want The Old Castle Inn to offer relaxed top-quality drinks, good company and great service – the sort of place we’d like to go.
“We’d also like to reassure customers that safety is of paramount concern and we will follow all current and future Welsh Government Covid guidance to the letter.”
The Old Castle Inn has undergone a sympathetic re-decoration with original features like its timber flooring renovated and two of its fireplaces recommissioned to provide open fires. One of the lounge doors has been sealed up creating more space and enhancing the pub’s cosy appeal. The bar and a raised snug / cwtch area have been revamped and toilets upgraded as part of the refurbishment. In addition, new flat screen TVs, and state-of-the-art audio-visual and music systems will ensure the highest quality viewing and sound experience.
Outside, the pub façade has been painted a smart midnight blue with new signage and lighting. The courtyard beer garden has also been redecorated with new atmospheric lighting and furniture installed.
Katie and Geraint’s plans for The Old Castle Inn in 2022 are to host quiz nights and live entertainment in the form of solo and duo artists, karaoke and more. They’ll also show live BT and Sky sports and are keen to re-establish a darts team.
The pub will be open from 11.00 am daily and will serve coffee as well as selection of premium quality drinks.
Dave Morgan, Business Development Manager for Star Pubs & Bars says: “We’re delighted that Katie and Geraint have taken on The Old Castle Inn. It’s a lovely characterful pub. With its improved stylish look, great sound system and with Katie at the helm aided by Geraint, I am sure it will become a popular town centre local. I wish Katie well with her career change and both of them a fulfilling future behind the bar.”
The refurbishment at The Old Castle Inn is part of a £38m investment that Star Pubs & Bars is making in more than 700 pubs in 2021.