Wigan firm's plans for 'adventure park' approved

Paddleboarding at Adventure Parc Snowdonia
Paddleboarding at Adventure Parc Snowdonia

A Wigan firm has revealed plans to create a £16m “flagship adventure destination” in Wales.

Surf Snowdonia, which is chaired by Wigan businessman Martin Ainscough and part of Leigh-based Ainscough Group owned by him and his family, launched in 2015 as a world-first inland surf hub.

It will rebrand as Adventure Parc Snowdonia as it expands and bids to become a landmark visitor destination for people across the UK and beyond.

The development will see the addition of: a nature-inspired high-thrills climbing, artificial caving adventure experience; outdoor family activities including an off-road pump track, mountain bike trail, bouldering, fun and fitness trail and adventure playground; and instructor-led activities off-site and visits to other leading attractions in the region.

The new facilities are expected to open to visitors in summer.

The firm is also in advanced discussions with Hilton to open a Hilton Garden Inn within the development in 2020, which would be the brand’s first hotel in Wales.

As well as the 106-bedroom lagoon-side hotel, there would be a wellness spa with indoor and outdoor treatment and relaxation areas, as well as conference facilities.

Andy Ainscough, managing director of Surf Snowdonia, said: “Our investment in phase two is all about building on what we’ve established over the last three years: a flagship adventure destination for Wales and the UK.

“Our plans will allow us to give our visitors more of what we know they really value: engaging, family-friendly adventures which take them away from their screens and get them moving more in the great outdoors.”

The proposed investment will effectively double Surf Snowdonia’s workforce, creating more than 100 jobs.

It is hoped it will also boost visitor numbers to North Wales, expanding Surf Snowdonia’s season from nine months to 12 months.

Jim Jones, managing director of North Wales Tourism, said: “Surf Snowdonia is a transformational development that has regenerated this part of the Conwy Valley. It is now one of our top attractions in Wales and has contributed immensely to our dynamic regional and economic tourism profile.

“The fact that the team are looking to invest further in a new state-of-the-art all-year-round indoor attraction and hotel is further testament to the confidence of our adventure offer.”

Planning permission for phase two of the plans has recently been approved by Conwy County Borough Council and construction is due to start in the coming weeks.

Adventure Parc Snowdonia will open for surfing in May, with the new facilities launching in the summer.