A public meeting has been arranged calling on local people in the Meirionnydd area and further afield to show their support to the UK's first purpose-built mountain bike centre.
Coed y Brenin visitor centre in Ganllwyd near Dolgellau opened in 1996 and has since long established itself as a fantastic base, providing services to help local people and visitors make the most of their time enjoying the huge network of world-class mountain bike trails located in the forest.
“Hearing the news that Natural Resource Wales is currently reviewing the future of three of its visitor centres across north and mid Wales has sent shockwaves through this community,” explains Plaid Cymru’s Gwynedd Councillor for the area, Delyth Lloyd Griffiths.
“We know that 100,000 visitors come to Coed y Brenin every year - economically, how on earth could a rural, sparsely populated area like Meirionnydd dream of welcoming those numbers of visitors to the area, in any other capacity?
“The centre employs 20 people making Coed y Brenin a fundamentally important employer to Gwynedd.
Natural Resource Wales has also announced that visitor centres at Bwlch Nant yr Arian, Ponterwyd near Aberystwyth and Ynyslas in Borth, Ceredigion are also under review by the NRW Board, with an announcement expected at the end of March.
Cllr Delyth Griffiths continued; “People need to understand that a rural area has few and far employment opportunities, with most people self-employed and working hard in very small run businesses. Having a resource, like this, open throughout the year, offering an important service to compliment the natural surroundings that this mountain bike, walking and running trail provides is crucial to this area.”
“We are urging local people to attend this public meeting at Neuadd y Pentref in Ganllwyd on Thursday 1 of February at 6:30pm to make their voices heard,” said Cllr Delyth Lloyd Griffiths.
Already, support has been gaining momentum on-line as the biking community far and wide come to hear of Natural Resources Wales’ review looking at the future of Coed y Brenin’s visitor centre. Local businesses in Dolgellau are also showing grave concern at the review.
Speakers joining Cllr Delyth Lloyd Griffiths at the public meeting include Senedd Member for the Dwyfor Meirionnydd, Mabon ap Gwynfor; Dafydd Caradog Davies MBE, founder of Coed y Brenin bike tracks; local biker, Rhys Llywelyn and Natural Resources of Wales Head of Sustainable Commercial Development, Elsie Grace.