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Living in Bridgend County Borough

Bridgend County is a breath of fresh air. The shoreline is home to year-round surfing, blue-flag beaches and world-class golf. Inland, natural beauty is dotted with historic sites and legends. Our curious traditions include the ancient Mari Lwyd at New Year and the world’s biggest Elvis Festival.

Towns and Villages

A market town since the 16th century, Bridgend has a lively mix of independent shops, cafés and high street names. Go in search of the town’s history. Explore St John’s House – the oldest habitable building in the town. Climb up to the impressive Newcastle Hill, offering great views of the town. Enjoy arts activities and events at Carnegie House.

In the traditional indoor market, you’ll find long established family businesses and new traders. Head to the Rhiw Shopping Centre and Bridgend Shopping Centre for a mix of familiar high street names and independent retailers.

Bridgend town effortlessly mixes age-old heritage with modern shopping centres, superb restaurants, and cafés and plenty of entertainment for people of all ages.

Situated in the beautiful Llynfi valley, Maesteg – which is Welsh for ‘fair field’ – developed during the industrial revolution. Enjoy panoramic views in the Llynfi Valley walks which start in this former mining town and relax in the idyllic Spirit of Llynfi Woodlands on the site of a former colliery. The redevelopment of the town hall will bring with it, an opportunity to enjoy various entertainment activities in this cultural centre.

People who love adventure, can take part in a variety of activities at the Watersports Centre, Rest Bay, or test golfing skills at one of the world’s finest golf courses, Royal Porthcawl. Enjoy funfair rides, ice cream and spectacular sunsets in summer, or cosy up in a seafront café after a winter walk along the beach.

Just behind the seafront Esplanade, you’ll find an exciting range of independent shops and cafés, alongside high street brands. On the harbour is the RNLI station and Wales’ oldest listed bonded warehouse, the Jennings Building, which is now a bustling waterside spot with cafés and restaurants.


In and around the Bridgend area there are an abundance of leisure facilities to suit all interests and moods. For ‘outdoor types’, there are mountain walks, golf, fishing, opportunities for sailing, surfing and paddle boarding.

If you are looking for entertainment or cultural pursuits, the area is well served by theatres, cinemas, museums, art galleries and numerous societies.

For sporty types, facilities include swimming pools and leisure centres, bowling, pony trekking, outdoor bowls, tennis and numerous rugby and football grounds, cricket pitches and there are a number of first-class golf courses. For those stimulated by more ‘social activities’, the county borough offers an abundance of local pubs, clubs and hotels.


For unforgettable walking and biking holidays, this is the place. The scenery of the Llynfi, Garw and Ogmore river valleys is stunning, and Bryngarw Country Park is the ideal starting point from which to explore our valleys.

Less well-known than our coastal region, the mountain tops offer amazing views from ridgeway routes. Along the valley bottoms, former railway lines and coal mines have been transformed into traffic-free paths and nature-filled spaces.

The county borough’s extensive coastline is home to year-round surfing, blue-flag beaches and world-class golf. Inland, natural beauty is dotted with historic sites and legends.

Our curious traditions include the ancient Mari Lwyd Festival, which takes place at New Year in the historic village of Llangnwyd to the world’s biggest Elvis Festival. All year round, we’re up for an adventure!


Set on the south Wales coast, Merthyr Mawr Warren National Nature Reserve, Bridgend is home to the highest dune in Wales, known as the Big Dipper.

Parc Slip Nature Reserve itself is an area of 300 acres containing a fantastic mix of habitats such as grassland, woodland and wetlands, restored from its previous status as an opencast coal mine.

Kenfig NNR (includes the area of sand dunes and Kenfig Pool) are designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). Glamorgan's largest natural lake, Kenfig Pool, is set on the edge of this beautiful sand dune nature reserve.

Whether you are a family in search of fun and adventure in the fresh air, or a walker who wants to escape to the wonderful Welsh countryside, you’ll find it all in abundance at Bryngarw Country Park, minutes from the M4 near Bridgend.

This historic building erected in 1881 and now a grade II listed building, is the focal point of Maesteg. The Town Hall provides a 550-seat theatre as well as housing six of the great Welsh artist paintings.

Easily accessible from most parts of the UK and Europe, the county borough benefits from excellent transport links, including three junctions on the M4 motorway, near-by seaports, stations on the main London - Swansea rail line and a short journey to Cardiff-Wales International Airport. It is 246 square kilometres in size and has a population of 145,500 (source ONS).

Housing and education

Housing in the area ranges from picturesque stone built cottages full of character to beautifully equipped executive homes in modern housing developments. Prices for housing represent exceptional value for money with prices in Wales generally being lower than in other parts of the UK.

Schools, playgrounds, GP surgeries, retail outlets, bus routes and other amenities form part of new developments.

Educational standards in the county borough are high, with first class schools achieving excellent results.


Discover the brands you love at McArthur Glen Designer Outlet. There are over 90 high-street and designer brands, and plenty of places for a coffee or lunch during your shopping trip. Located just off junction 36 of the M4, the centre offers a wide range of shops from clothing and beauty products to stationery and cookware.
Combine that with free parking, disabled access, wheelchair hire and relaxed outdoor areas, for a memorable visit. The cinema and covered children’s play area mean it’s a fun day out for families, too.

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