Six Valleys parks and heritage sites are the first to be named as Discovery Gateways, set to share in £7m of investment as part of work to create a Valleys Regional Park.
Chair of the Ministerial Taskforce for the South Wales Valleys Alun Davies named Dare Valley Country Park, Caerphilly Castle, Cwmcarn Forest, Blaenavon World Heritage Visitor Centre, Cyfarthfa Park and Bryngarw Country Park as the first sites.
Local Government Secretary Alun Davies said:
“The Valleys Regional Park is at the heart of our ambition to help Valleys communities maximise their rich natural and cultural heritage to deliver real social, economic and environmental benefits.
“Our Valleys contain some fantastic natural landscapes and cultural treasures. This Valleys Regional Park will kick-start work to raise their profile internationally, while better connecting them to our towns and villages and encouraging more active lifestyles.”
The £7m investment will start to connect Valleys with high-quality walking trails and cycle routes. It will support the development of a high-quality network of uplands, woodlands, nature reserves, country parks, rivers, reservoirs and canals, as well as heritage sites and connect them with our towns and villages.
Alun Davies will today announce the Discovery Gateways as part of an oral statement updating Assembly Members on the Our Valleys Our Future Delivery plan for 2018.
“As part of this work I have visited other regional parks across Europe, and the Discovery Sites announced today have a great deal to offer visitors. From the fantastic mountain biking on offer in Cwmcarn Forest, to the industrial history of Blaenavon and the pageantry of Caerphilly Castle, there is so much to offer. With this investment we will work to make these sites world-renowned, while doing more to attract people locally to the landscapes and heritage on their doorstep. I intent to announce further sites in the coming weeks.”