600,000 people visit Wales’ highest mountain every year – how do we prevent traffic congestion and damage to the landscape?

Photo by Patrick Gillespie on Unsplash

*English follows below*

Catrin Glyn, Partneriaeth Yr Wyddfa

Ers sawl blwyddyn bellach, mae’r nifer blynyddol sy’n ymweld â’r Wyddfa yn uwch na 600,000, ac mewn ardal wledig warchodedig mae hynny ar brydiau yn creu heriau sylweddol o fewn ein cymunedau lleol ac i’n hamgylchedd.

Yn nhermau parcio a thrafnidiaeth mae pwysau arwyddocaol ar barcio yn y tymor prysuraf gyda meysydd parcio wedi ei hamcangyfrif i fod yn orlawn am 87% o’r amser yn ystod mis Awst. Mae hyn yn arwain at barcio anghyfreithlon mewn mannau fel Pen-y-Pass ac Ogwen, gan achosi traffic dwys a chodi pryderon posib o ran diogelwch y ffordd, yn ychwanegol i greu niwed ffisegol a gweledol i’r union amgylchedd y mae ymwelwyr yn dod yma i’w fwynhau.

Mae’r Sherpa yn gwasanaethu bob hanner awr/awr ym misoedd yr haf ar ochr ogleddol y mynydd ond mae hyn yn llawer llai rheolaidd ar yr ochr ddeheuol ac yn Ogwen, yn enwedig ym misoedd y gaeaf.

Fe lansiwyd cynllun rheoli gan Bartneriaeth Yr Wyddfa yn 2018 ar gyfer Yr Wyddfa a’r ardal gyfagos. Mae’r Bartneriaeth yn drawstoriad o sefydliadau, busnesau a grwpiau cymunedol sydd wedi ymroi i warchod dyfodol y mynydd. Mae’r Partneriaid yn cynnwys awdurdodau lleol, undebau ffermwyr, fforwm mynediad lleol a chynrychiolwyr lleol o’r diwydiant twristiaeth.

Yn dilyn ymgynghoriad cyhoeddus a osodwyd yr heriau yn ymwneud â pharcio a thrafnidiaeth ar frig yr agenda, fe gytunodd y Bartneriaeth ar weledigaeth ar gyfer y dyfodol a’r camau i’w cymryd i fynd i’r afael ar heriau ac i gyrraedd y nod.

Gobaith Partneriaeth Yr Wyddfa ydyw nid yn unig fod yr ymwelwyr yn cael profiad o’r radd flaenaf sy’n rhagori ar eu disgwyliadau, ond fod gwasanaethau parcio a thrafnidiaeth yn gweithio gyda’i gilydd ar gyfer anghenion hirdymor yr amgylchedd, ein cymunedau, yn ogystal â’n treftadaeth leol.

Yn dilyn proses dendro, penodwyd Martin Higgitt Associates i gyflawni adolygiad ar faterion parcio a thrafnidiaeth yn ardaloedd Yr Wyddfa ac Ogwen ar ran Partneriaeth Yr Wyddfa.

Derbyniodd y Bartneriaeth nifer o geisiadau cryf, er hynny roedd Martin Higgitt Associates yn rhagori gyda’i ffocws hirdymor a’i methodoleg, yn enwedig gyda’i hystyriaeth lawn i drafnidiaeth gyhoeddus gynaliadwy, yn amlinellu gweledigaeth hirdymor uchelgeisiol ond cyraeddadwy.

Mae’r tîm yn cynnwys arbenigwyr cenedlaethol gyda phrofiad ar draws y wlad yn arwain ar brosiectau trafnidiaeth gynaliadwy. Mae un o’r tîm wedi’i lleoli yn Awstria ble y mae hi wedi datblygu prosiectau yn annog twristiaeth gynaliadwy gyda symudoldeb gwyrdd mewn 23 o gymunedau alpaidd.

Mae’n hynod gyffroes i weithio gyda thîm sydd ag arbenigedd rhyngwladol a chymaint o brofiad yn y maes. Rydym wedi ein hargyhoeddi y bydd y cwmni yn cynnig atebion newydd gan lunio argymhellion arloesol a mwy cynaliadwy fydd nid yn unig yn gwella profiad trigolion lleol ac ymwelwyr, ond yn cyfrannu at warchod beth sy’n gwneud Yr Wyddfa mor eithriadol.

 

Amcanion

Mae’r Bartneriaeth yn falch felly o gyhoeddi’r penodiad hwn a bod y cwmni bellach wedi dechrau mynd i’r afael a’r gwaith. Cynhaliwyd cyfarfod cychwynnol rhwng Martin Higgitt Associates a Phartneriaeth Yr Wyddfa ym Mhlas Tan y Bwlch ar y 9fed o Ionawr. Yn y misoedd nesaf fel rhan o’r gwaith, fe fydd Martin Higgitt Associates yn cyflawni’r camau isod cyn cyflwyno’r adroddiad terfynol cyn yr haf:

  • Cam 1 – Bwriad Cam 1 ydyw i Martin Higgitt Associates ddod i adnabod lleoliadau a phartneriaid, a’r weledigaeth strwythurol hirdymor. Mae hyn yn cynnwys: cyfarfodydd ag ymweliadau safle, adolygiad polisi, dadansoddiad data ac arolwg o waith llwyddiannus tebyg.
  • Cam 2 – Ymgysylltu gyda’r cyhoedd yn cynnwys holiadur ar y we, ymgynghoriad cymunedol mewn tri pentref cyfagos, gweithdai ac ymgynghoriadau wyneb yn wyneb ag unigolion. Fe fydd y cam hwn yn gyfle i’r cyhoedd gael mynegi barn ar y mater ag i drafod syniadau.
  • Cam 3 – Fe fydd Martin Higgitt Associates yn cynnal gweithdy partneriaeth ac yn cyflwyno’r amcanion a ddatblygir o’r gwaith ymgysylltu cyhoeddus.
  • Cam 4 – Yn dilyn cyflwyno’r drafft adroddiad fe fydd Martin Higgitt yn cyflwyno ac yn trafod gyda’r Bartneriaeth cyn gwneud unrhyw gyweiriadau neu ychwanegiadau i’r adroddiad cyn cyflwyno drafft terfynol.

Mae safbwyntiau a dyheadau’r cymunedau lleol a’r defnyddwyr yn greiddiol i ddatblygiad unrhyw gynigion ac fe fydd mwy o wybodaeth ynglŷn â’r ymgynghoriad a’r broses yn cael ei rannu yng nghylchlythyr Partneriaeth Yr Wyddfa.

Am ragor o fanylion am sut i danysgrifio i’r cylchlythyr – cliciwch yma.

Photo by Nikolay Dimitrov on Unsplash

Catrin Glyn, Yr Wyddfa Partnership

In the last few years, we’ve seen annual visitor numbers to Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon) reach over 600,000, which in a protected rural area brings with it some considerable challenges to our local communities and environment. In terms of parking and transport, there is significant pressure on parking in peak season with car parks estimated to be over their capacity for 87% of the time during the month of August.

This leads to unauthorised parking in locations such as Pen-y-Pass and Ogwen, causing traffic congestion and potential road safety concerns, as well as physical and visual damage to the very landscape visitors come to enjoy. The Sherpa bus runs every 30 minutes/1hr in the summer months on the north side of the mountain but is far more limited on the south side and in Ogwen, especially in the winter months.

The Yr Wyddfa Partnership launched a management plan in 2018 for Yr Wyddfa and the surrounding area. The Partnership consists of a cross-section of organisations, businesses and community groups who are committed to looking after the future of the mountain.

Partners include local authorities, farmers’ unions, local access forum and local representatives from the tourism industry. Following a public consultation which placed the issues of parking and transport at the top of the agenda, the Partnership agreed on a vision for the future of the area and the steps needed to take to address challenges, to ensure that vision becomes a reality.

The Yr Wyddfa Partnership wish not only to offer a world-class visitor experience that exceeds all expectations, but offer integrated parking and transport services working alongside the long term needs of the environment, our communities and our local heritage.

Following a tendering process, Martin Higgitt Associates have been appointed to carry out a review into parking and transport in the Yr Wyddfa and Ogwen areas on behalf of the Yr Wyddfa Partnership.

The Partnership received a number of strong applications, however Martin Higgitt Associates excelled with their future-focused approach and methodology, especially with full consideration to sustainable public transport, outlining an ambitious but achievable long-term vision. The team consists of national experts with nationwide experience in leading on sustainable transport projects. One of the team is based in Austria where she has developed initiatives promoting sustainable tourism with environmentally-friendly mobility in 23 alpine communities.

It’s extremely exciting to be working in conjunction with a team who have international expertise and such vast experience in the field. We’re confident that the company will offer innovative approaches, and will be forming more sustainable solutions that will not only improve local people and visitors’ experience, but will contribute towards protecting what makes Yr Wyddfa so exceptional.

 

Objectives

The Partnership is therefore delighted to announce details of this appointment and that the work has started. An inception meeting was held between Martin Higgitt Associates and the the Yr Wyddfa Partnership at Plas Tan y Bwlch on the 9th of January. In the next few months as part of the work Martin Higgitt Associates will complete the stages listed below before submitting the final report before the summer:

  • Stage 1 – The purposes of Stage 1 are for Martin Higgitt Associates to familiarise with locations and partners, and the strategic longer-term vision. This involves: meetings and site visit, policy review, data analysis and a review of other related successful initiatives.
  • Stage 2 – Engagement with the public involving an online questionnaire, community consultations in three nearby villages, workshops and one on one consultations with partners and stakeholders. This will be an opportunity for the public to have a say on the issues and to discuss ideas.
  • Stage 3 – Martin Higgitt Associates will hold a partnership workshop to present the draft objectives, developed from public engagement.
  • Stage 4 – Following submission of the draft final report, Martin Higgitt Associates will present and discuss with the Partnership before making any corrections and additions to the report before submitting a final draft.

The views and aspirations of local communities and users are integral to the development of any proposals. More information will be shared about the consultation and process in the Yr Wyddfa Partnership’s newsletter.

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Johnny GambleCatrin EllisMarianRhosdduIan Cooper Recent comment authors
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paul
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paul

One idea to save footfall on the downward trek. There could be a chap on the top who would ask the Nationality of each person as they arrived at the summit. If they answer English then the chap throws them off ! Well its just an idea lol.

George D. Aber
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George D. Aber

LOL, well played Paul!

Jonathan Gammond
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Jonathan Gammond

Good to see someone being proactive about our natural environment. It is so easy for us to destroy what we love visiting and experiencing.

Walter Hunt
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Walter Hunt

Great advertisement for Yorkshire based Martin Higgitt Associates. Their name appear 7 times in each language in this short piece. If there genuinely isn’t home grown talent of sufficient calibre, shouldn’t the approach be to nurture and mentor the talent that Wales does have? A genuinely foundational economy of networked local businesses up-skills, boosts employment, local economic activity and wealth retention. This is the basis of development, sustainability, community and cultural renewal, but that is undermined by importing personnel and exporting profit.

Huw Davies
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Huw Davies

Evident that there remains in some parts a default belief that if it’s from outside Wales it’s got to be superior ! Sadly it will require even more effort on the part of the more confident and assertive people in Wales to overcome this defect in our colleagues.

Kim Davies
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Kim Davies

Put a limit on the number of people in sponsored groups.

Francis
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Francis

More bus services to and from the likely start and finish points… Theres unused wasteland in other villages round about that could be used as parking and connected by shuttle bus during high season… Shuttle connections extended to Bangor with free passes for those arriving to the area by public transport or with local post codes. Make parking free for local residents but massively increase parking fees in llanberis, whilst creating additional parking and shuttle services in other towns and villages and making them cheaper. Snowdon could be advertised as part of a package of North Wales experiences connected by… Read more »

Eric Baylis
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Eric Baylis

I have only one question to ask, why wont Gwynedd Council use the Glyn Rhonwy complex, that they own, as a Park and Ride ? All the services such as tar-macadam access roads, drainage, water, electricity and street lighting are there. The site compromises of 5 slate waste areas that have been levelled and would be ideal as a parking area, it has a capacity for approx 2000 vehicles. The Sherpa bus service to Pen y Pass / Betws y Coed does an U turn off the by-pass into Llanberis village within 200 mts of the area. Why fund a… Read more »

Ian Cooper
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Ian Cooper

Something needs to be done to make people want to stay. Car parks in towns and villages with the Sherpa running more frequently during peak season. A lot of people park up, climb a mountain, get in their cars and go home, not spending anything in local businesses. Restrict parking at the hot spots so people park in the towns and villages then on return spend money. If paying for parking, should the sherpa bus be free to use or vice versa? If council owned then GCC need to re invest the money they get from parking charges into the… Read more »

Rhosddu
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Rhosddu

Car-parking is only one part of a wider problem. Tourism is a blight on Y Wyddfa and should be handled in a totally different way. The Jac o’ the North website has looked at the contrast between the New Zealand Government’s approach to tourist access to the country’s natural treasures and the attitude of the Welsh Government to Snowdonia. New Zealand seeks all sorts of guarantees, and restricts access to anyone who does not meet the requirements; Wales allows a free-for-all, with the result that parts of Snowdonia are slowly becoming trashed. Any future Welsh Government should be paying serious… Read more »

Marian
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Marian

Mountain rescue to start charging!

Johnny Gamble
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Johnny Gamble

This is most definitely the case in the Alpine Nations

Catrin Ellis
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Catrin Ellis

Mae mynyddoedd erail i’w edmygu – other mountains also exist to be admired and visited, and diverse communities to host and inspire visitors and in turn benefit from their interaction and spend. Snowdon Partnership is a great collective – I’ve worked with them in the past (though perhaps typically Welsh, I wasn’t quite so self-promoting as their current consultants ;-)) – and am glad the article mentions the Ogwen ranges too. Broader, systemic thinking can provide benefits for towns like Bethesda, Penygroes and Nantlle, and Blaenau too, and deliver more sustainable solutions for yr Wyddfa. In the Brecon Beacons, lower… Read more »