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FAQs for general visitors and members

When will your staffed sites re-open?

We are working hard to develop a safe reopening programme for all of our staffed sites in Wales.

We will start a phased re-opening of these monuments at the beginning of August, with the aim of re-opening 18 out of 25 of our staffed sites (at a limited visitor capacity) by the end of September 2020.

View a list of the sites we plan on re-opening this summer. Please note that the list does not include any of our seasonal sites which close annually during the winter months (e.g. the castles of Oxwich and Rhuddlan) which will be re-opened officially during the spring of 2021.

Please note, each and every one of our sites is different in shape, size and form, so we are unable to design a ‘one size fits all’ re-opening plan, with each individual monument requiring extensive risk assessments and site-specific health and safety adaptations to allow for a safe re-opening.

With over 25 spectacular staffed sites in our estate, this will take time and some sites require a lot more work than others to meet Welsh Government COVID-19 safety guidelines. This is the reason why our planned re-opening dates vary across monuments.

The safety of our members, visitors and Cadw staff is our top priority and we will only re-open a site once we can ensure a safe onsite experience for everyone. With this in mind, we’d like to thank you for your on-going support and patience as we continue to plan for a safe re-opening of our major historical sites.


Have your visiting processes changed?

Yes. When our staffed sites re-open, they will be operating at a reduced visitor capacity to allow for effective social distancing, thereby maintaining public safety and abiding to the Cymru Wales core message of ‘Visit Wales, Safely’.

Therefore, all of our members and visitors will need to book time-allotted tickets to visit any of our staffed heritage sites for the foreseeable future, no less than 24 hours in advance of their planned visit. Without a pre-booked ticket, you will not be able to enter your chosen site. This approach will allow us to restrict the number of visitors at our staffed sites at any given time, ensuring a safe and socially distanced experience for everybody. Tickets will be made available via a booking system on the Cadw website from 10am on Monday 3 August.

For more information about how our ticketing system will work, please visit our FAQ page.

Furthermore, some sites may see certain areas closed to visitors until further notice, for public health and safety reasons.


How can I find out which sites you are planning to reopen and when?

Please check our planned re-opening schedule; we will continue to update this webpage and our social media channels with further information and re-opening announcements over coming weeks and months.


Will your sites’ opening hours remain the same?

Due to a change in staffing levels following the coronavirus outbreak, Cadw’s staffed heritage sites will initially only be open for five days a week rather than seven, with varying opening days across monuments.

These details are outlined in our phased re-opening plan and will be clearly specified through the online ticketing platform, with all tickets to be site specific and only valid for entry to the monument selected at point of purchase or reservation.

We are planning on re-opening our staffed sites in line with their normal opening hours for the summer season, with a one-hour closing period at lunchtime to allow for deep site cleans and disinfection practices. However, please note that some monuments may need to adopt new, temporary opening hours to ensure social distancing guidelines and regulations can be met, so we are advising visitors to always check the individual site webpages for the most up-to-date information before planning a visit.


What measures are you putting in place to make staffed Cadw sites safe for visitors?

We have introduced a large number of increased hygiene and social distancing measures to make our sites as safe as possible for our visitors and employees alike.

These include, but are not limited to: the installation of plastic partition screens at entry desks, the placement of directional arrows and 2m distanced markers along walkways, the introduction of one-way routes, regular deep cleans and frequent disinfection of key touch points including interactive screens, door handles and railings.

To help keep our sites safe we will be asking everyone to visit safely, responsibly and respectfully at all times.


What facilities will be open at your sites?

Toilets: we are working hard to re-open our on-site toilets in line with social distancing guidelines. These facilities will be subject to rigorous new hygiene routines and re-opened with limited capacities — meaning visitor waiting time may be a bit longer than usual. However, at some sites, further site adaptations will be required before we can safely re-open toilets to visitors. We advise that all future visitors check individual site webpages for the most up-to-date facilities information before planning a visit.

Retail: all of our gift shops will be operating as normal but with strict social distancing measures in place to ensure public health and safety. Sites with smaller visitor centres and gift shops will only be able to allow one household in for browsing at any one time, while others may transfer shop product into an external, more spacious marquee setting. We advise that all future visitors check individual site webpages for the most up-to-date facilities information before planning a visit.

Cafes: the café at Harlech Castle will re-open with strict social distancing measures in place. However, we regret to inform you that the café at Castell Coch will remain closed until further notice due to further essential adaptations required to ensure a safe visitor experience. Future visitors to Castell Coch and other staffed sites without a café facility are advised to bring their own food and drink (if desired), but please remember consumption of alcohol and BBQs is not permitted.


Will visitors need to wear protective face-masks to enter your sites?

Face masks will only be required if stated as part of Welsh Government guidance, so, at present they are not compulsory. However, we welcome any visitors who would feel more comfortable to visit in a face mask or face covering to bring or wear their own.

How can I report an incident onsite?

Our staff will be monitoring sites at all times to ensure visitors are keeping a social distance and being respectful and responsible during their visit. However, if anything concerns you please inform a custodian or feed it back to us via our online survey OR, in the case of a serious emergency, call 999.

I’d like to support Cadw by making a donation. How can I do this?

Thank you for your very kind offer. We appreciate that this is a difficult time for everybody and we hugely value your support of Cadw, which continues to help us protect, care and conserve Wales’s historic sites for the benefit of future generations.

If you would like to make a one-off donation to Cadw, please visit the donations page on our website.