With the charms of the country mixed with the friendly bustle of a town, there are many reasons why our dear Monmouth made it to number 3 in the prestigious list last week.
Here are few facts why our town is so special:
1. Benefits of border life
Monmouth truly has the best of both worlds; although it’s located firmly in Wales, it lies on the edge of England. Thanks to the excellent location for road transport links this means guests can enjoy the town’s high street but venture into the wild countryside if they’re feeling adventurous.
2. Home to Rolls-Royce
The statue of Charles Roll in front of Shire Hall pays homage to the pioneer who invented the Rolls-Royce along with Henry Royce. His former home, the Manor House at the The Rolls of Monmouth Golf Club, boasts a 6,733 yard course and the stunning mountain views rival any other golfing spot in the UK.
3. The oldest theatre in Wales
For a small town having two theatres is quite impressive in itself not to mention that The Savoy Theatre is reputed to be the oldest working theatre in Wales dating back to 1832. With a capacity of 360 seats and one of 24 buildings on the heritage trail, it is somewhat of a relic for the town.
4. The mouth of Monnow
The name Monmouth actually derives from the Welsh word for river ‘Monnow-mouth’ and as the town is situated precisely at the point where the River Monnow meets the River Wye it seems about right. There also exists rowing clubs for both schools even the comprehensive.
5. History and Henry V
Monmouth was the birthplace of Henry V and the site of a small Roman fort; its medieval stone gated bridge is the only one of its type remaining in Britain.
6. A hidden gem for archaeology
The Council for British Archeology designated Monmouth as one of the best sites in Britain for its bronze age boating history, remaining Roman artefacts and strong links with the iron industry.
7. Top education
The town has an abundance of excellent schools, the most famous being Monmouth School for Boys which has outstanding results in both academic achievements and extracurricular activities. The school will be celebrating 400 years this year with many famous alumni making appearances.
8. The charters’ traditional market town
Although large supermarket chains do exist, there are plenty of independent shops to explore and the old market still takes place next in Agincourt Square outside Shire Hall. The hall in fact hosted the chartist trials and the original courthouse remains inside.
9. Pint to pint
Monmouth has a whole host of rustic pubs, each full of character (and most likely eccentric locals) – try the Old Nags Head, the Punch House, the Griffin or the Three Horseshoes.
10. Monmouth Castle & Regimental Museum
Monmouth’s regiment is one of the oldest in the country, going back to the momentous 1530’s when Henry VIII dissolved monasteries, split from Rome and divorced wives. The museum houses fascinating memorabilia including archeological exhibits, information on HMS Monmouth and the castle itself dates back to 1068.