A consortium led by Conwy County Borough Council in partnership with Gwynedd Council, Snowdonia National Park Authority and the National Trust has been awarded funding under the £19million European funded Heritage Tourism Project, backed by £8.5m from the European Regional Development Fund.
Princes of Gwynedd will identify clusters of sites in localised areas linked to a series of gateway sites including Conwy, Caernarfon and Betws y Coed. These strategic hubs will be used to develop meaningful and memorable storylines on the life and times of the Princes to build connections between historic sites, places, people and communities. The aim is to deliver an authentic and distinctive heritage tourism product, in North West Wales, and one which has been designed in detail in conjunction with Cadw.
Benefits from the £450,000 scheme, which aims to increase visitors to the region by upwards of 6,000 annually and create the equivalent of 7 full time posts largely through the wider economic impact of extra visitors, include improved signage and interpretation panels, the design and development of a new website, interactive maps, MP3 applications, a new welcome centre at Craflwyn for Dinas Emrys and funding for a series of community initiatives within the Conwy Valley.
Alun Ffred Jones, Heritage Minister, said, “Congratulations to the Conwy County Borough Council led consortium on their successful bid. This is an important and unique project which will provide an integrated approach to the provision of interpretation across Gwynedd, Conwy and Snowdonia National Park to reveal and enhance the story of the Princes of Gwynedd and encourage greater exploration of this unique and fascinating cultural landscape.”
“The Heritage Tourism Project, managed by Cadw, will also be working with communities, heritage partners and the tourism sector to develop heritage tours, trails and an events package to ensure the project benefits the wider community and tourism industry.”
Councillor Goronwy Edwards, Cabinet Member for Communities on behalf of the consortium, added, “We are very happy to have been awarded this funding as our bid was built on the premise of widening the visitor experience beyond individual heritage sites and to connect with the local community and surrounding area.
“By working in partnership across authority boundaries and with other organisations, we will deliver a strategic approach to the promotion and interpretation of the sites and attractions, resulting in enhanced visitor experiences.
We look forward to starting work on what promises to be a very important addition to the tourism offer in north west Wales.”