Hundreds of Monmouthshire families have had the time of their lives this summer visiting the many Monmouthshire County Council attractions, taking part in the brilliant sporting activities, outdoor theatre experiences and castles.

Over 8000 people visited the Visit Monmouthshire website www.visitmonmouthshire.co.uk to find out where they could go to make everlasting memories.

Caldicot Castle provided the back drop for a magical experience for little ones mesmerised by Louby Lou and her team of storytellers. The sell-out story telling sessions saw children from all over the county get lost in the tales of white rabbits, swashbuckling pirates, dinosaurs and unicorns and hunt for the gingerbread man around the Castle grounds. The castle is looking forward to many more favourite tales being played out amongst the turrets and cannons.

Over 3,535 young people aged 5-12 years of age participated in the ever popular Mon Games. The sheer number of young people having fun through sport is a testament to the fantastic staff and volunteers who support the Mon Games initiative. This year saw the start of dance and gymnastic and outdoor adventure camps, mermaid school, alongside the ever popular Girls Can, football, rugby and cricket camps.

The team works in partnership with Newport Gwent Dragons and Gwent Outdoor Centres’ to provide the unique opportunities and saw 404 children and young people take part over 29 days.

At Old Station Tintern over 1500 people hopped on board the miniature train for a ride around the grounds and many families and explored the grounds to look for clues in the treasure trail.

Chepstow Museum hosted four Drop in and Make craft afternoons throughout August at The Drill Hall. Grandparents, parents and carers enjoyed a few hours making fun things with their little ones. Chepstow Tourist Information Centre became the perfect place for locals and visitors to meet with friends for a coffee before exploring the town, castle and a stroll along the river.

Monmouthshire is rich in history. This year saw the start of informative tours of the Monnow Bridge in Monmouth. Over 600 people visited the only remaining fortified River Bridge in the UK with its gate tower standing on the bridge. The tour is led by knowledgeable volunteers and has been a hit with locals and visitors since the tour began in April 2019.  

Abergavenny Castle provided the backdrop for award winning outdoor entertainment, 450 people came along and families brought picnics and blankets to revel in the grounds of the castle. Performances included the popular children’s book Gangsta Granny by David Walliams, brought to life by Heartbreak Productions. Illyria Productions brought Alli Baba and the Forty Thieves to Abergavenny and saw brilliant actors, a spectacular set and hilarious slapstick comedy entertaining people of all ages in a unique setting.

Cabinet Member for Mon Life, Cllr Richard John said:

“This summer has been immense. The feedback from all our leisure centres and attractions is so pleasing to see. The opportunities that Mon Life provide are incredible and I am so pleased to see so many children, young people and their families taking advantage of the unique activities. I look forward to seeing more partnership working with facilities such as our outdoor education service. Monmouthshire has so much to offer for families we really did provide the Summer they Want.”

Many more events and activities are planned for October half term. The Mon Games and sports camps are open for bookings. Pop in or call a leisure centre to book a place. All centres are open between 6.30am and 10:00pm from Monday to Friday, between 8.00am and 6:30pm on Saturday, and between 8.15am and 6:30pm on Sunday (holiday opening hours may vary).

Visit Monmouthshire is hub for all events and attractions, so much information. Plan the next few months, visit: www.visitmonmouthshire.com