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14 February 2020

A landmark Pontyclun pub with a chequered past is set to receive a £500,000 refurbishment to transform it into a great quality family-friendly local. The Windsor Hotel on Llantrisant Road, which has been closed many times over the last five years, will have its future secured by the project.

The investment is being made by Heineken-owned Star Pubs & Bars. Tracey Lewis – who has run pubs around Rhondda Cynon Taf for more than 15 years – will take the helm as the Windsor’s new licensee.

The development starts on 20th January and is expected to take 10 weeks, with the Windsor Hotel scheduled to reopen in mid-March. Eight new jobs will be created.

Situated on the busy A4119, the Windsor Hotel is in a prominent location. Outside work will completely change the pub’s appearance, enhancing the village. The project will repaint the pub; add a new entrance, signage and lighting and make it wheelchair accessible. New bi-fold doors will open from the pub onto a café style area with planting at the front.

The Windsor Hotel’s dated interior will receive a major makeover to make it comfortable and contemporary. The pub will be opened up and doubled in capacity by moving the toilets to the first floor. There will be a spacious bar as well as a new kitchen and dining area to enable food to be introduced for the first time. The menu will focus on traditional favourites such as pies, burgers and curries, and there will be a separate children’s menu with special kid-sized cutlery and crockery. Tracey is also installing a barista-quality coffee machine and will serve food and hot drinks all day.

Tracey wants to make the Windsor Hotel a hub of Pontyclun life and, to that end, has a host of events planned from quizzes to music nights to bring people together. Other activities will include coffee mornings and a special lunch menu for senior citizens, get-togethers for mums with toddlers as well as charity fundraisers in aid of local good causes selected by regulars. Sports enthusiasts will be well catered for, too, with Sky and BT Sports and high-definition screens.

Tracey grew up in Rhondda Cynon Taf and has known the Windsor Hotel for many years. Says Tracey: “I used to go to the Windsor years ago, it has been sad to see it lose its way. I’ve got family and friends living in Pontyclun, and they’re crying out for a good local that also welcomes children. Pontyclun is a lovely village and the Windsor Hotel has loads of potential. I jumped at the chance to take it on when I saw the plans. They’re really exciting: the pub will be unrecognisable inside and out when it reopens.”

Adds Caren Geering, Star Pubs & Bars operations director for Wales: “Tracey is a highly experienced licensee with an excellent track record for running good pubs. As a local person she knows Pontyclun well and what residents want. We’re delighted she is joining with us to give the Windsor Hotel a new lease of life. With more housing planned around Pontyclun, there will be even more demand for good pubs. We want to make the Windsor Hotel an asset to Pontyclun and help it thrive for the long term.”

Star Pubs & Bars acquired the Windsor Hotel from Punch Taverns in 2018.