South East Wales

Plans to build UK's longest ski slope in Merthyr Tydfil

Leigh Large and Robin Kellen at the entrance to Rhydycar west Image copyright HUW JOHN
Image caption Leigh Large and Robin Kellen believe it would attract more visitors to Merthyr

Plans to build one of Europe's longest indoor ski slopes in Merthyr Tydfil have been revealed.

The 500m (1,640ft)-long slope would be part of a new leisure complex and regeneration scheme at Rhydycar West.

Marvel Limited, which acquired the 575 acre (233 hectare) former coalmining site in 2013, has proposed a £450m investment which would create 800 jobs.

Alongside the ski slope, the plans include new homes, two hotels, a water park and an equestrian centre.

Leigh Large, of Marvel Limited, said: "We believe our scheme's exciting sport and adventure facilities will attract more visitors to Merthyr."

The company has been working with Snowsport Cymru Wales to deliver the project, which said the ski slope would become the longest in the UK.

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Media captionArchive footage shows Eddie "The Eagle" Edwards at Merthyr's first ski slope which opened in 1988

There are hopes the "state-of-the-art" snowsport facility, which would be built on a mountain at the site, could become a future training base for the Team GB ski and snowboard team.

Robin Kellen, chief executive of Snowsport Cymru Wales, described the proposal as a "great opportunity" which would "create opportunities for increasing participation in snowsports".

Dan Hunt, performance director of British Ski and Snowboard, said: "I am very excited by the prospect of having a national training centre of excellence for snowsports in Wales."

Other ideas for the site include developing a mountain coaster, zipline and airpark, as well as yurt and cabin accommodation and a sports pitch.

Consultations with the local community will begin this autumn.

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