Menu toggle


29 May 2017

R21 WOTY to Mid Wales 2017

This year Region 21 headed to the town of Llandrindod Wells in mid Wales for our annual WOTY.

This year Region 21 headed to the town of Llandrindod Wells in mid Wales for our annual WOTY. We based ourselves at the Metropole Hotel, a venue that has been used by many other Regions and Registers and I can see why. It is an excellent hotel with good food, friendly staff and there is a large car park with plenty of space to park the cars in a reserved area.

The majority of the group were scheduled to arrive on the Friday evening but Kathy and I decided to travel down on the Thursday to give us all of Friday to check out the roads that we planned to use. Robin and Jo and Ken and Marilyn also travelled down on Thursday so we were able to meet up with them for dinner and for our first taste of the Metropole’s food, which was excellent.

One of my main concerns about Wales as a venue was the weather but our arrival on Thursday saw us greeted with warm sunshine.  A previous WOTY to north Wales a few years ago had been blighted by heavy rain so it was a relief to see the sun.

In 2016 I made the mistake of leading the group down some roads that I had not previously checked and that resulted in some challenging, very narrow lanes! So, determined to avoid a repeat, Kathy and I drove the planned route on Friday and were pleased to find well surfaced, lightly trafficked and extremely enjoyable roads.

Friday evening saw the rest of the group arrive and assemble in the bar for pre-dinner drinks. Most of the group already knew each other but we also welcomed Tom and Gill Frost from the north of England. The hotel provided us with a private dining room so we were able to renew acquaintances whilst we ate and it also gave me the opportunity to brief everyone on the plan for Saturday.

So, after a hearty Welsh breakfast and a group photo, we took a pleasant 30 minute drive to the Elan Valley Visitor Centre. Here we met up with Alan, an Elan Ranger, who had been booked to give us an introduction to the Elan Valley and guide us to some of the reservoirs. After an introductory video we dove to the massive Claerwen reservoir and dam, you may have seen it on Top Gear a few years ago when Richard Hammond winched himself up the face of the dam in a Land Rover. Having seen just how high and steep it is – rather him than me!

From there we went to the Elan valley itself and the Peny Garreg reservoir. We were in a convoy of 16 Porsches and parking was restricted at this site so a short walk was required to reach the dam. This was a slightly challenging walk for some of the party but everyone made it safely. The highlight of the trip was an opportunity to go inside the dam and emerge in the central tower which gave a good opportunity for a group photo. The weather was a little on the cool side at this stage but the views were stunning and well worth the walk. The Elan Valley is a truly beautiful area and if you have never been it is well worth a visit.

By this time we were running slightly behind schedule so after biding goodbye and thanks to Alan we set off to our lunch venue which was a 45 minute drive away at Devils Bridge. Our route took us over the mountain road which was narrow in places but surprisingly well surfaced with very little pot hole damage. After a spirited drive, including one section of uphill hairpin bends (like a mini Stelvio Pass) which looked fantastic with all of the cars spread out over it, we arrived at the Hafod Hotel at Devils Bridge for the sandwich lunch that we had pre-ordered. The hotel looked after us well and what might have been seen as a light lunch was actually quite a substantial sandwich including a portion of chips.

Refreshed we headed for the afternoon drive which most people opted to do. This was an 80 mile loop that headed south using A and B roads to pass through Lampeter and Llandovery on the way back to the hotel at Llandrindod Wells. Most people ran in groups of 3 or 4 cars which is  more manageable than a large convoy. Some chose to complete the group in one go, Kathy and I along with a few others took the opportunity to stop in Lampeter for afternoon tea and cake. Very civilised! The final B road back to Llandrindod Wells gave a great opportunity to really enjoy the cars at their best.

Dinner on Saturday evening gave everyone the opportunity to discuss the events of the day with the general conclusion that the area offered some great driving roads that were in surprisingly good condition and relatively lightly trafficked. The scenery was pretty stunning as well.

Sunday was a free day but with suggestions that included a couple of steam railways in the area and The Hall at Abbey-Cwm-Hir. A group of us headed for the Vale of Rheidol Railway which runs from Devils Bridge to Aberystwyth, we did the return journey and as the weather was warm and sunny did it in an open carriage. Peter and Lynda Maynard, who are train enthusiasts, chose not to take the train but popped up at various points along the journey to photograph us. After the trip, the weather was so good that we decided to drive into Aberystwyth and have a look at the sea. A good choice as it turns out because it was really warm and sunny and we enjoyed drinks on the seafront whilst we watched the brave souls taking a swim. A small group visited the Hall at Abbey-Cwm-Hir which they told us was an amazing place and certainly worth a visit if you are ever in the area.

By dinner time on Sunday evening we had lost two couples from our group who, because of late booking, could not get accommodation in the hotel for that night. For the rest of us it was time for thanks and goodbyes before people headed for home on Monday morning. 

On reflection it was a good weekend for everyone apart from Tracy, of Boxster Register fame, who was ill and confined to the hotel for the entire time but fortunately had recovered sufficiently by Monday morning to make the trip home. My thanks go to Ken Swain who suggested the venue and to everyone who came along for their friendship.

If you didn’t join us this year maybe you will consider coming along in 2018. At this stage I am not sure where we will be heading but someone mentioned   the Yorkshire Dales so we will explore the options in that area. If you have any suggestions I will be pleased to hear them.

You can view more photos from the WOTY here.

Terry Perry
R21 Regional Organiser

Let us help you unlock the potential of your Porsche

Join now