The Minister for Culture, Tourism and Sport, Lord Elis-Thomas today visited Llys y Frân, Pembrokeshire as plans to redevelop the Dŵr Cymru site take another step forward with the go-ahead of EU funding.
This project will create an iconic recreational park and activity centre which will attract an estimated 40,000 additional tourists, outdoor enthusiasts and local residents. The funding will enable the development of a year-round product both for recreation and education, and will have a positive economic, social and environmental impact whilst also improving the health and well-being of both local residents and visitors.
EU funding of £1.7 million is being invested in the development through the Welsh Government’s Tourism Attractor Destination programme, led by Visit Wales, which aims to create 13 must see destinations across Wales.
The redevelopment at Llys y Frân will include a refurbishment and expansion of the visitor centre and full refurbishment of the café with a new water themed play area. A new Outdoor Activity Centre and Waterside Cabin will be built to support walkers, cycling and water sports enthusiasts. The centre will include a wet suit drying room, bike repair workshop, meeting rooms, staff office, food stop, bike storage, bike wash downs and cycle hire.
To build on Llys y Frân’s cycling product, a Pump Skills Park and cycle trail will be constructed to provide a natural entry to the 10 km cycle trail around the reservoir. A single track wild trail with red and blue runs departing the existing green-run track will be developed to maximise the offering to cyclists of all abilities.
The Minister, said: “Llys y Frân has so much potential and I’m delighted that we can support Dŵr Cymru with funding to take this vision forward for what will become an iconic water based and outdoor hub for the area. The development will benefit the local community, as well as draw more visitors to Pembrokeshire.
"Our aim through the Tourism Attractor Destination programme is to focus efforts and investment on key projects in each region so we have a real impact on Wales’ profile in this globally competitive market. This development will give people compelling reasons to visit the area and I look forward to plans which I have seen coming to fruition.”
Peter Perry, Dŵr Cymru’s Managing Director, said: “We are delighted to welcome the Minister to Llys y Frân to share with him our exciting plans to create a first-class tourism destination.
"Our plans represent an opportunity for Llys y Frân Reservoir to become an exciting, vibrant visitor attraction that will complement other attractions in Pembrokeshire and bring benefits to the local, rural tourism economy.”
Planning for Phase 1 of the project is already in place and construction is expected to start in December.