Our Journey Begins
The origins of Plas y Brenin
Plas y Brenin was built in 1798 by Lord Penrhyn as the Capel Curig Inn. It provided accommodation for Queen Victoria, Kings Edward VII and VIII, and George V and was renamed the Royal Hotel in 1870. In 1854, author George Borrow visited and wrote the following for Wild Wales his book about his journey through the country;
“Having walked now twenty miles on a broiling day I thought it high time to take some refreshments and inquired the way to the inn. The inn, or rather hotel, for it was it was a very magnificent edifice, stood at the entrance of a pass leading to Snowdon, on the southern side of the valley.”
Aside from a few years of use as a mountain warfare training centre during World War II, the building remained in continual use as a hotel for over 150 years. The Central Council for Physical Recreation acquired the site in 1955 for use as a national recreation centre, with funding from King George VI’s memorial fund. The centre was renamed Plas y Brenin, meaning ‘The King’s Place’, in his honour.
Ever since, Plas y Brenin has been at the forefront of outdoor instruction. While the exact courses on offer have varied over the years, with disciplines as diverse as horse riding and fly fishing on offer, the main focus has never shifted from the importance of getting active outdoors.
Since 1997, Plas y Brenin has been operated on behalf of Sport England by the Mountain Training Trust, a not-for-profit charity founded by the British Mountaineering Council, Mountain Training UK and Mountain Training England. The charity was founded specifically to run the centre, and in doing so ensure the continued delivery of world-class training while encouraging more people to get active in the outdoors, regardless of their abilities or experience.