VARTEG residents may have thought they had seen the back of an ‘insulting’ proposal to rename the village ‘Farteg’ - but a new consultation has been launched over the idea.

The plans were met with widespread humour and concern earlier this year, but now residents are again being urged to say how they really feel about the proposed change, and a potential variation of it, to be used alongside the English version.

A consultation started on Monday for locals to have their say on the subject, and the amended ‘Y Farteg’ name.

The questionnaire – aimed at those who work and live in the area – is available from Torfaen council.

Residents and workers in the area reacted with bemusement.

John Evans, from Blaenavon, said: “I think the name Varteg reflects the history of the place. It’s an ancient name which could even have come from Roman sources, with a Roman fort in Abergavenny. No-one knows what the name really means but it reflects the changing face of society and I can’t see why people would want to waste money trying to changing it. Not every name in Wales has to be Welsh.”

Janet Jones works at Foy Williams estate agents in Blaenavon said: “I am very proud to be Welsh and would love everything to be bilingual but in this economy and with the local authority set to make huge cut backs I don’t think it makes financial sense.”

Richie Rowlinson, landlord of The Crown Hotel in Varteg called it a “stupid idea”.

“It would open the whole area up to ridicule,” he said.

But the Mayor of Blaenavon, Councillor Gareth Davies, said he supported the decision to consult again. “I feel that the name change is a matter for the people of the Varteg, but also feel that any decision will come to be accepted quickly and will not greatly impact the day to day life of the residents,” he added.

An original consultation was launched at the start of the year on 22 Welsh place names for communities across Torfaen.

The aim was to encourage the use of the Welsh language with places that have ‘English’ names like Pantygasseg and Varteg getting Welsh translations alongside them on road signs and elsewhere.

But residents turned to Torfaen’s long-serving MP Paul Murphy for help in September when the thought of a bus rolling past with Farteg emblazoned across the electronic destination display proved too much for many.

Some said they feared being ridiculed if the change went ahead, comparing the name to a "silly school playground insult".

Welsh language campaigners said the ancient name should be replaced because there is no ‘V’ in the native tongue.

But Torfaen County Borough Council said following discussions ‘Farteg’ was considered inappropriate.

The Welsh Language Commissioner subsequently proposed the alternative, ‘Y Farteg’.

A council spokesman said: “If either ‘Y Farteg’ or ‘Farteg’ are adopted it will mean that in the future one of these Welsh place names will be used alongside Varteg.”

To voice your opinion visit To request a copy of the questionnaire email or call 01495 766065.

The consultation will run until Monday December 9.