Once visited, never forgotten and always looking for the next opportunity to return
How did Pant Ifan become our home from home?
Pant Ifan is the second home of the Cave and Crag club members. A remote, stone built Welsh farmhouse with a large barn and situated in a stone wall enclosed paddock on top of the Tremadog cliffs. It is a very special place. Access is via a road and rough track from Prenteg and by footpath from Tremadog. There are wide ranging sea views to the front and mountains to the rear. World renowned climbing on the Tremadog cliffs is within close walking distance and there are endless remote mountain walking and biking opportunities all around. The barn lends itself to great social occasions and many meets have included large bonfires, barbecues and even ceilidh bands.
Pant Ifan was discovered in 1954 by club members Stan Moore, Trevor Jones, Ken Clarke and Pete Knapp after climbing Dogs Head Pinnacle. The farmhouse, which is reputed to have been built in the 16th century and is the oldest building in the area above the cliffs of Tremadog, was in very poor condition but they made enquiries about the possibility of the club renting the property. The owner was Captain Livingstone Learmonth, a wealthy and influential landowner living at Tan-Yr-Allt, Tremadog. He gave the club permanent use of the buildings for an annual rent of ten shillings and sixpence and one gallon of good ale each year. The Captain went above and beyond for the club and provided materials to help restore the buildings. The ‘hut’ was officially opened at Christmas 1954 after many working parties.The Captain also owned a slate mine in Ffestiniog and took great pleasure in taking members on visits. As a great friend to the club he became an honorary member until his death in the 1980s. On the death of the Captain the club was offered the chance to purchase Pant Ifan and, with help from members, was able to secure the property for members for the years to come.
Is there a Pant Ifan ghost?
A resident ghost makes his presence known to selected visitors to the hut. He is known as Pant Ifan and it is said that he was a man who had disagreements with the well known poet Percy Shelley who resided at Tan-Yr-Allt. He subsequently hanged himself at Pant Ifan. The Captain used to describe him as a friendly, mischievous spirit.
How do we take care of Pant Ifan?
We are indebted to the many club members who have taken on the role of hut warden and made Pant Ifan a labour of love over the years from Dave Williams to John ‘the Minch’ Minchin, our longest serving warden. Through personal commitment and expertise, as well as organised club ‘working party meets’, the facilities at Pant Ifan have been upgraded to include sleeping quarters, heating and improved access and parking facilities. The special ‘Andy Picken’ fund provided up to date washing and indoor toilet facilities.