Tuesday 18 December 2012

The Park, Barry

Park, Park Crescent, Barry, CF62 6HE

Open all day

The Park is situated on a steep hill, a short walk from Barry railway station and was built in the later-part of the nineteenth century, as many of the town's larger pubs were in order to cater for the trade and expansion of the town brought about by the construction of the docks. Locals claim that the building was once used as a bible college and a book even says the building was originally a church, however the Park does have the appearance of a late-Victorian brick-built pub, albeit a very grand one. Originally there were 5 doors to the pub, each leading to separate and distinct areas such as the lounge, smoke room, public bar etc, some of these doors have been blocked up over the years and the main entrance today is is on the corner and this leads to a large room with a centrally-situated dark wooden bar with a gleaming brass footrail around it.

Six handpumps are on the bar, serving Brains Bitter, Dark, SA, Rev James, a guest beer and a guest cider. There is also a stillage for casks behind the bar with up to four beers being served straight from the barrel. The guest beers change frequently but the Park is an unusual local outlet for beers from Vale of Glamorgan Brewery, situated in nearby Cadoxton. Other breweries that have featured here have included Gower Brewery and the pumpclips of the previous guests beers are displayed on the bar back, either side of the central pub clock.

To the left of the bar is another smaller room, whilst to the right the bar area continues into a corridor which leads to a separate room with another bar. This part of the pub also has some original features such as ornate moulded plasterwork and a large wooden staircase. The staircase leads to a first floor function room with views across Barry. The Park also features a skittle alley.

The Park is decorated throughout with old breweriana, beer bottles, photos of old Barry and rugby memorabilia, the decoration is familiar to anyone who has visited the City Arms in Cardiff recently and it appears that Brains are trying to make the Park the premier alehouse of the Vale of Glamorgan as they have done with their flagship Cardiff pub. The Park features flatscreen televisions throughout and there is a quiz night every Tuesday.

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