Pantfest success

Cross Guns Inn, Pant, Shropshire

Last month’s Pantfest held at The Cross Guns Inn in Pant has been hailed a success – especially given the difficult situation pubs currently find themselves in due to COVID-19.

Cross Guns Inn, Pant, Shropshire
The Cross Guns Inn, Pant

The Cross Guns has announced that almost £250 was raised by and for three local organisations – the PTA at Bryn Offa School, Pant Memorial Hall and the Restore the Montgomery Canal! Appeal. All are to receive £60, with donations on the day to the canal group adding another £65.

Although the car boot part of the day didn’t pull in quite as many people as was hoped, the afternoon music event was very well supported.

Said Maureen from the pub: “We are really pleased at how the day went and it’s great to be able to support these local organisations with cash raised on the day. Due to the COVID-19 regulations at the time, we had to arrange the event at pretty short notice, but it was great to welcome more people into the pub’s gardens for the first outside performances of the year.

“Pantfest was our way of saying ‘thank you’ to the whole village for their support during the early part of the year when we were only open for takeaways.”

Recent changes to the regulations for pubs mean that the Cross Guns, along with all other pubs in England, will have to close by 10pm and will be restricted by law to table service only.

No table bookings of more than six are allowed and groups won’t be able to mingle with other people. You will need to give your contact details for future tracing if an outbreak is detected.

Staff will have to wear masks, as must customers if they are not sat at their table to eat or drink.

Added Maureen: “Times continue to be difficult for us all, but we are aiming to keep the Cross Guns at the heart of the community.”

If you want to find out more about the three local organisations, please visit: Pant Memorial Hall, The Montgomery Canal or Bryn Offa PTA.

Welshpool event focuses on Montgomery Canal

Horse drawn canal boat

The Canal & River Trust charity is organising a weekend of fun waterway activities at Welshpool Wharf, as part of the Welshpool Transport Festival on 23-24 June.

Horse drawn canal boatAlthough taking place in Welshpool, the event is open to all and is taking place alongside a music festival – Music for the Monty – which is seeking to raise funds for and publicity about the restoration of the section of canal through Pant to Llanymynech.

Free canoeing and coracle taster sessions will be on offer on the Saturday (10am-5pm) and paddle boarding taster sessions on the Sunday (10am-2pm). Narrowboat trips, also free courtesy of the Heulwen Trust, will be available throughout the weekend.

These activities and other community events are being promoted by the Canal & River Trust, which manages 2,000 miles of the nation’s waterways, as part of the Heritage Lottery-funded project to restore the Montgomery Canal.

Music will keep everything swinging along throughout the weekend and a special charity concert, in aid of the Montgomery Canal restoration, will be held on Saturday night in the Assembly Room at Welshpool Town Hall. Advance tickets at the special price of £8.00 each are available through the website or £10 on the door.

CanoeingAlso, on both days will be a rare opportunity to enjoy a horse-drawn boat trip along this section of the Montgomery Canal. For the first time in years, this unique mode of transport will take visitors along the Welsh stretch of the waterway. Trips are heavily subsidised and cost only £2 per person. Tickets are available on the day from the bottom of Church Street Car Park near the canalside – postcode SY21 7DD.

Sylvia Edwards, Montgomery Canal community development officer with the Trust, explained: “This special weekend offers visitors a marvellous chance to try out a range of exciting activities on water. Research proves people feel happier and healthier by water so it’s a great event for introducing visitors and local residents to opportunities for enjoying leisure time on the beautiful waterway.

“For people with a more competitive streak, we are hosting a coracle relay race at 2pm on the Saturday. This is free to enter. No previous experience is necessary as participants will have chance to practise in the morning up to midday. We hope lots of supporters will come down for the race to cheer on the competitors.”

Teams of four need to have registered their coracle race entry by 21 June by emailing or calling 07787 508 635.

This weekend of community activities are part of a much larger HLF-funded £4 million project which involves the creation of a new three-hectare wildlife habitat within Aston Locks Nature Reserve and navigation restored to 1¼ miles of the canal, from Maesbury to Crickheath.

A dedicated turning point for narrowboats, known as a ‘winding hole’, is also being created, enabling boats to return to the area for the first time since 1936 when the canal was closed. The project includes access improvements to the canal and nearly five miles of towpath upgraded. The Canal & River Trust works with 15 partner organisations which make up the Montgomery Canal Partnership. The Partnership aims to restore the canal fully within the next decade as a haven for people and nature.

For more information about the Montgomery Canal restoration why not visit

Photo credit: Cracker photo by Dave Barker at Bywater Cruises.

Free outdoor concert at Llanymynech Wharf

Dickon Faux-Nightingale

Free concert at Llanymynech Wharf.

Llanymynech Wharf on the beautiful Montgomery Canal will be ringing to the sounds of choirs, bands, string quartets and drama on Sunday 4 June.

Llanymynech Wharf‘Musicians on the Wharf’ will feature performances from seven groups on stage between 2pm and 5pm. The free outdoor concert has been promoted by the Canal & River Trust, which manages 2,000 miles of the nation’s waterways, as part of the Heritage Lottery- funded project to restore the Montgomery Canal.

The Odd Bods, Morton Choir, Café Lola, Penndragon, Oswestry String Quartet, Roleplay Theatre and local youngsters promise to keep the audience entertained for three hours in the idyllic rural setting next to the canal. The Wharf visitor centre will be open and refreshments available.

Sylvia Edwards, Montgomery Canal community development officer with the Trust, explained: “This is a marvellous opportunity to showcase local talent in this beautiful waterside location. It is one of a number of free community activities being organised as part of the canal restoration project. We want people to get involved with their local
waterway and what better way than through the power of music.”

Free parking is available close to the event site, which can be found following the postcode SY22 6EA. Follow the local Canal & River Trust on Twitter @CRTNWalesBorder.

To find out more about this free concert at Llanymynech Wharf or the Trust’s work on the Montgomery Canal, please go to or ring 0303 040 4040. You can also find out about volunteering opportunities or ways to donate to the Trust’s vital work.

The Canal & River Trust is the guardian of 2,000 miles of historic waterways across England and Wales, caring for the nation’s third largest collection of listed structures, as well as museums, archives, and hundreds of important wildlife sites.

We believe that living waterways transform places and enrich lives and our role is to make sure there is always a place on your doorstep where you can escape the pressures of everyday life, stretch your legs and simply feel closer to nature.

Musical instrument practice in Pant

Many of you will know that Pant Memorial Hall is the venue for a wide variety of events in the village and this year sees the launch of a new event.

Music in PantLocal residents are holding the first Musical Instrument Practice session on Sunday, 25 January. The idea behind the session is to give people who are learning to play a musical instrument an opportunity to meet up with others in the same situation.

Because everyone is likely to be learning to play different instruments and be interested in different styles of music, the session will not be a music lesson but an opportunity for anyone to play in front of others and to discuss any issues they have with learning to play.

If the first session proves to be successful then it might develop into a regular event.

Anyone interested in attending is asked to bring their instrument along to Pant Memorial Hall at 11 am. All ages and abilities are welcome and the session is free, although donations towards the cost of hall hire will be welcomed.