In the pipeline for several years, plans are expected to be submitted this summer for one of the UK’s longest indoor, real-snow ski slopes, as part of a massive regeneration of former industrial hub Merthyr Tydfil.
According to Wales Online, developers have spent the previous five years planning and seeking consultation on the Rhydycar West development, which is expected to include a tropical water park and luxury hotels alongside the snow centre, as well as a housing development.
The centre will mark the seventh indoor slope to open in the UK since the Snowdome centre at Tamworth in 1994.
Expected to come in at around 500m, the indoor slope would be the UK’s, and one of Europe’s, longest. Perched on the side of the valleys around Merthyr Tydfil, the promise of over 500 jobs will be a boon to the town which boasted one of the highest unemployment figures in Wales during the COVID-19 pandemic.
This is the latest in a series of indoor snow centre proposals across the south of the UK which have achieved varying degrees of success. Plans for a massive centre in London’s Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, first floated in 2013, were quietly dropped due to a lack of funding in 2016. A similar fate met plans for a Weston-super-Mare site in 2015.
More hopeful are plans for a centre in Swindon, which have been given the green light. However, as of 2021 ground has not yet been broken on the site – a delay of well over two years.