Wednesday 17 December 2014
Deputy Minister for Culture Sport and Tourism, Ken Skates visited Harlech Castle to see how work to improve the visitor facilities at the castle is progressing.
The castle is benefitting from a £5.8m facelift as part of Cadw’s £19m Heritage Tourism Project which is part-funded by the European Regional Development fund. The project is helping to maximise the economic value of heritage through increasing the volume, length and value of visits to Wales.
As part of the project, the ground floor of the former Harlech Castle hotel, which was purchased by Cadw in 2010, is being transformed into a brand new visitor centre, including an audio- visual experience, retail area and tearoom. In addition, the first and second floors of the hotel will be refurbished into five 5* apartments which will provide much needed high class accommodation for the town and surrounding area.
The project will also create a spectacular ‘floating’ bridge from the terrace area directly into the castle gatehouse, designed to enable level access for all for the first time in around 600 years.
The Deputy Minister said: “The works currently being undertaken at the castle are impressive. Developing Cadw’s vision of a state of the art visitor centre, which complements and enhances the ancient castle, into a working reality has been a significant task but one which is being achieved with considerable aplomb.
“Ensuring access for all is very important but can prove very difficult in historic buildings so I’m proud that the new bridge we are installing will achieve this in an imaginative and attractive way without detracting from the castle.
“I wish Cadw well with the rest of the project and look forward to seeing the works completed next year.”