Pentre Bach which translates to Little Village was created by owners Adrian & Ifana Savill. It is a family run business where there are a number of cottages and buildings that have been owned by their family for several generations.
The story begins with a lady called Mary Daniel who once lived in one of cottages named Pistyll Gwyn. Mary farmed and kept a shop which made her enough money to build a new house (The Butterfly Hotel) and a shop for her son in 1891 and a cottage for herself. Unfortunately her son later died after a tragic and fatal accident and Ifana’s grandfather, Daniel Morgan, Mary’s nephew, inherited the property.
Together with his wife, Daniel ran a thriving business which included farming, running a busy shop and the local Post Office. This was then passed on to Ifana’s father and came to an end when her mother Ann Olwen decided to retire from the Post Office in 1987. Mam-gu Ann Olwen’s homemade Welsh Cakes and pots of tea are still talked about amongst the locals today.
By the 1980s Ifana had started writing children’s programmes for S4C. One series was called Caffi Sali Mali, which was based on the ever-popular characters created by Mary Vaughan Jones. Siân Teifi’s production company filmed the 50 episodes in a studio in North Wales. When Ifana saw the sets being pulled down at the end of each series she had an idea – why not film on location and create a permanent home for Sali Mali? Low and behold, S4C commissioned her to write a series which was called Pentre Bach. Siân would produce and Adrian (Ifana’s husband) and herself would be responsible for providing the location. A number of places were considered but then fate played its hand when it dawned on them that the location had been under their noses all the time! The family farm! It was the ideal place which consisted of a variety of buildings and even a real shop!
Adrian and Ifana set about putting the idea into practice. In hindsight it was a huge project, planning permission was needed, public footpaths to be diverted, all the buildings needed renovating etc. A detailed business plan was needed in order to secure funding. As well as a filming location they planned a holiday village, with 4 star self catering accommodation which would serve as a cultural attraction, attracting day trips and sleepovers and family days out.
The rest is history as they say and Adrian and Ifana have been running this complex since 2005 ably assisted by Rosa Tandy.