Barry is a seaside resort town in the Vale of Glamorgan in South Wales, and more importantly than that is the setting for the iconic Gavin and Stacey TV series. But where was Gavin and Stacey filmed exactly? Here is your ultimate guide to every Gavin and Stacey filming location in Barry so you can go and see what’s occurin’ for yourselves!
The much loved Gavin and Stacey TV series is iconic British TV at it’s best. It told the story of Gavin, from Essex, and Stacey, from Barry, who fell in love after speaking on the phone every day at work, and with lovable, relateable characters and heartwarming comedy it became an instant classic. Now with James Corden and Ruth Jones finally bringing it back to our screens in 2019, the Welsh town of Barry is once again very much in the spotligh, and fans of the show can go and visit every one of the Gavin and Stacey filming locations and relive the series for themselves! Tidy!
It’s well lush!
The town of Barry and Barry island, not actually an island owned by a man named Barry despite the popular misconception Pam, are one of my favourite places in Wales, if not the UK!
Barry is a quintessentially quaint seaside town at it’s best, with a huge dose of faded charm and an injection of trendy investment, it is the perfect mix that just puts you in a great mood from the moment you arrive and has everything you could want in a great seaside holiday, a beautiful stretch of spotless beach (one of the best in the entire UK and second only to the Gower coast in my opinion), promenades, bandstands, amusement arcades and seaside cafe’s for that much needed cup of tea and bag of chips!
Where to’s it now then? (Or where is it and how to get there in non Barry speak).
Barry is in Wales, obviously. More specifically it is in the spectacular Vale of Glamorgan, only a very short distance from Cardiff, and is easily reached by train from Cardiff Central train station with regular and cheap trains taking around 25 minutes.
It is really easy to get to, and really easy to get around. Many of the attractions are very central to the main promenade (which is a location in and of itself) and you can walk to most of the major Gavin and Stacey location sites around Barry yourself in a day without the need to take a tour. The only real exceptions to that are those locations that were filmed outside of Barry, but apart from Gavin’s house (which is in neighbouring Dinas Powys) the odd motorway service station and a few bars and shops there aren’t many!
And remember, don’t listen to Pam, Barry Island isn’t actually an island owned by a man named Barry, it’s not technically an island anymore at all, and you can easily walk from the island to the main town of Barry and back.
So at the end of the day, when all is said and done, where’s it all to then?
Gavin and Stacey filming locations in Barry and on Barry Island.
The house where Stacey lived with her mum Gwen is on Trinity Street in Barry, an easy ten or fifteen minute walk from the island itself. The iconic house is not hard to miss as the owners have Gavin and Stacey pictures all up in the front window and don’t mind fans of the series stopping for a few selfies. Just be aware though that these are real houses where people actually live so take some photos but be respectful too.
Trinity street in Barry deserves a whole mention of its own since it played such an iconic role in the series. Who can forget the whole gang turning up for that day at the beach, uncle Bryn running across the road in his vest and shaving foam to confront Gavin, or elderly neighbour Doris declaring she’s absolutely twatted before letting a string of toyboys out of her house? Both Bryn and Doris’ houses are obviously here for a selfie or two as well, even if you can’t get an omellette!
Nessa’s human statue pitch.
The scene where Nessa takes a break from her random human statue gig to chat to Gwen and Jason takes place right in the centre of Barry, in King’s square outside of the town hall to be exact. Cracking.
Smithy’s infamous drunken quiz night.
Gavin and Smithy’s local and the venue for Smithy’s infamous quiz night where Gary Lineker is the answer to every second question, supposedly in Essex, is actually the Colcott Arms Bar and Grill in Barry.
Neil, the baby’s, christening venue.
The Christening of Neil, the baby, and also the tagged on engagement party of Nessa and Dave actually took place in the Tadross Hotel in Barry. Just don’t ask anyone where the salad is!
The promenade, Barry Island.
This now iconic promenade is the home to a number of Gavin and Stacey filming locations and is the absolute heart of any location tour or trip to the beach here as it is right on the seafront and the start of any coastal walk.
The square here is where Dave’s coaches picked up and dropped Stacey off for that very first trip to London, where Gavin surprised Stacey on her return, and where Nessa dressed up as Santa.
Boofy’s chip shop.
This is Gavin and Stacey’s chippy of choice! The inside was never really shown in the series itself but the outside was, and pretty much everyone can be seen eating their chips after coming here at some point! You won’t get a second portion of chips with chips here, but you will get a great traditional dinner in one of Wales’ most famous chippy’s!
Marco’s Cafe and Ice Cream Bar.
This is where Stacey worked in season 3, but it can be seen in the background throughout the entire series and is an iconic Gavin and Stacey location. It really hasn’t changed at all from when it was filmed and there is now a huge picture of some of the cast just behind the cafe (near the public loos) where you can take a selfie.
Nessa’s slots arcade.
This is actually called Island Leisure Amusement Arcade and can be found at the end of the Western Shelter on the promenade. It is still almost exactly like it was in the series itself, with a few changes here and there and a huge wall of Gavin and Stacey memorabilia for sale, but you can still read the famous unreadable sign and get a few goes of the penny arcades in before Nessa breaks your face!
Barry Island Beach.
This epic stretch of sand where the entire gang headed for a seaside day out and Bryn got everyone excited with his James Bond in the ocean impression, is actually called Whitmore Bay Beach and is right in front of the main square and the promenade. It is actually a lot larger than the TV made it seem but can still get pretty packed on hot, sunny days! The adjacent Jackson’s bay is a smaller and quieter beach and that is where Gavin and Mick had their father to son chat. Both beaches are stunning and there are some great coastal walks on either side.
You can’t ride the now defunct log flume anymore, but the rest of the Barry Island Fairground is still there, just a few minutes walk from the beach and the promenade! Technically I think it may actually be part of the promenade!
Remember that many of these locations are all right next to each other, and you can walk from the island through Barry and up to Stacey’s house in around ten to fifteen minutes. It really isn’t far and the easy walking distances means you can make a great day of it without the need for Dave’s Coaches. Tidy.
Gavin and Stacey filming locations outside of Barry.
Gavin’s house where he – and Stacey – lived with everyone’s favourite relationship goal barometer Pam and Mick, is not in Billericay in Essex as was portrayed in the series, but on Laburnam Way in the neighbouring town of Dinas Powys.
The Glendale Hotel in Penarth is actually the setting for the famous Italian restaurant where everyone gathers on an epic and fateful night out, where Pete and Dawn were trying to have a threeway and Nessa revealed to everyone that she was pregnant… and Smithy’s the father! Shit a brick!
Gwen’s Barn Dance community hall.
This is another location in nearby Penarth, All Saint’s Church Hall on Victoria Road to be exact, but Gwen’s big birthday bash was filmed here and was the setting for Bryn and Nessa’s epic Karaoke duet. As well as an unseen showdown with the dreaded Jean.
Nessa and Dave Coaches ill fated wedding venue.
The wedding that never was, the doomed romance ruined by Smithy at the last minute was actually due to take place in St. Peter’s Church in Peterston – Super – Ely, a small village just outside of Cardiff.
Gavin and Stacey’s wedding venue.
Despite Pam kicking off about her little boy being carted off to get married in some dirty fairground, the scene where Gavin and Stacey got married was actually filmed in St. Cattwgs Church in Llanmaes.
There are of course so many other locations in and around Barry that were featured in Gavin and Stacey, so many in fact that it felt like a character all of its own! Even shattering the illusion slightly by seeing the locations in reality does nothing to quell that sense of familiarity and warmth that you get from watching endless repeats of this classic comedy. I mean it’s not what you expect to see when you come into work in the morning but if you haven’t blown all your money on Nurofen and can still afford a holiday this year, then I still hope this little guide inspires you to come and see the wonders of Barry for yourself.
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