Caernarfon waterfront and town centre regeneration initiative

“Improving the town as a place to live, work and visit”

“The Council and our partners have identified the waterfront area of Caernarfon as a keyredevelopment area. Through a range of exciting projects, we firmly believe that this historic area of Caernarfon can look forward to a bright future."

- Councillor Gareth Thomas, Gwynedd Council’s Economic Development Cabinet Member


The initiative has seen Gwynedd Council assisting a number of local partners delivering Galeri 2, the new Welsh Highland Railway station and Cei Llechi.


Caernarfon’s £12m Tourism Attractor Destination project – this project has seen a state of the art terminus building built on St Helen’s Road, which includes a café, an exhibition space and a Changing Places toilets for the Welsh Highland Railway.

Galeri 2 - Galeri 2 hoped to sell 25,000 cinema tickets in their first year. They surpassed their target by selling 65,000.

Cei Llechi - down on the Castle’s waterfront, will open in 2020 and will include 19 artisan units for local craft makers to rent, 3 holiday lets and a meeting room. There will be a new promenade on the site and the access and linkages project will better connect the two Tourism Attractor Destination projects with the centre of town.

The scheme has been part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund through the Welsh Government.


The People and Places Insight Limited Town Benchmarking System has been developed to address the real issues of understanding measure, evaluate and ultimately improve town centres. The approach offers a simple way of capturing data on Key Performance Indicators selected by those involved in town centre management. It compares data from several years of the town’s performance to see whether it’s improving by having the tools to measure performance, strategic decision making is both encouraged and improved. By considering performance, forward strategies and action planning can be more focused and effective. 

Caernarfon Benchmarking Report - 2019

Infographs - Benchmarking 2019

Galeri 2 – Galeri was opened to the public during September 2018. The cinema reached it's initial targets, having sold nearly 30,000 tickets since their opening. 

Rheilffordd Eryri – was open over the Christmas period to accommodate the Santa trains. The kitchen and shop is being let next month and their doors will open towards the end of March. The building will open on 5 April, with the official opening being held in June. 

Prosiect Cei Llechi – Grosvenor Construction has commenced working on the site in October. We hope the construction work will be completed in December and the tenants will be in their units by Easter 2020. Locals are employed on this projects and Grosvenor works with Gwynedd school pupils on a projects aimed at promoting the advantages of working within the construction industry. 

Prosiect STAMP - A big screen will showcase the works of local artist on the official launch day of the new train station. The hope is that this space will encourage future local arts and community events. 

Galeri 2 – The 2 screen cinema opened on 21 September. Rhys Ifans and Dafydd Elis Thomas were invited to reveal the Llyr Erddyn Davies sculpture outside. The new building consists of:

  • Two dedicated screens (119 and 65 seats)
  • Entrance
  • Box office
  • Arts and craft space
  • Art room
  • Craft shop
  • Meeting room 

The building was designed by Richard Murphy Architects and built by RL Davies & Sons. This is the first tourist attraction project to be completed.


Welsh Highland Railway – The new building is almost complete. MPH Construction will continue work midweek, but the building is available to the customers on weekends. The new station hosts the Railway’s poster competition, exhibited every weekend until 28 October. The building will welcome the public in December just in time for the Santa Trains, with an official opening planned for next May. The new building will feature a shop and new ticket office, cafe and a new exhibition space, which will allow the

Railway to hold special events and be of use to the community.


Caernarfon Harbour Trust – Grosvenor will lead the construction on the Cei Llechi project. The Kinmel Bay based company has recently worked on Yr Ysgwrn, the home of the famous poet Hedd Wyn, and have extensive experience in heritage projects. The work will begin this month and will take 18 months to complete.


STAMP Project – The STAMP project has commissioned Bedwyr Williams to bring an artistic influence to the project and he has been working with the design teams for the Harbour Trust and the Railway. Bedwyr plans to install a large screen in the exhibition space of the new Railway terminus, which will play videos from local artists to try to capture the sights and sounds of how the former bustling industrial area would’ve been like. This collaboration has been a major part of the project and it’s hoped that the exhibition space will be a hub for local artists and the community.


Access & Linkages Improvements – Stage 1 of the project is complete and Stage 2 is due to begin in the last year of the project.

Galeri 2 – the building structure is complete and watertight. The cinema is expected to open by the end of summer 2018. 


Caernarfon Harbour Trust – the project is at tender stage for the main contractor, with construction work due to start in summer 2018.


Welsh Highland Railway – the building structure has been completed. The new terminus is expected to open its doors in September 2018.


Access & Linkages – Stage 1 of the project is complete. Stage 2 of the project will be undertaken in the final year of the project.


Bedwyr Williams -  The STAMP project has commissioned an artist, Bedwyr Williams, to bring an artistic influence to the project and he has been working with the design teams for the Harbour Trust and the Railway.

The VVP programme finished in April 2017. As a result of the initial VVP investment (£2.6m), the second phase of redevelopment was successfully secured, with the announcement in October 2016 that Gwynedd Council had attracted funding through the Tourism Attractor Destinations 2017-20 worth £12m. The confirmation of TAD funding, following on from the VVP investment, meant that Cyngor Gwynedd had secured £15m towards key strategic priorities. The TAD project led by Visit Wales, is funded by the European Regional Development Fund through the Welsh Government.

The package ensured that 3 of the Town’s prominent organisations – Galeri, Caernarfon Harbour Trust and Welsh Highland Railway can improve their offer considerably and were able to begin work on redeveloping some parts of Caernarfon that have been derelict for decades.

The TAD project started in April 2017, where Phil McGrath joined the Regeneration Team as Caernarfon Waterfront Initiative Project Manager. Details on the individual projects can be found below;


Galeri 2 – new full time 2 screen cinema, additional offices and creative work space. 

Caernarfon Harbour Trust – redevelop Cei Llechi – Island Site to 19 artisan business units, 3 holiday flat’s. 

Welsh Highland Railway – developing a new Terminus on St Helen’s Road.

Access & Linkages
 – improving the linkages between the strategic sites in Town.

Vibrant and Viable Places (VVP) 2014-17

In November 2014, Gwynedd Council and its partners were successful in securing the Welsh Government’s Tackling Poverty – Vibrant and Viable Places fund. The funding was crucial in enabling Gwynedd Council to implement a programme of projects in the Town. The programme included;

  • Empty Shops Initiative
  • Mentro Mlaen
  • STAMP:Caernarfon
  • Business Improvement District
  • Beics Menai 
  • Island Site - Cei Llechi
  • Welsh Highland Railway Terminus
  • Caernarfon Castle
  • Galeri
  • Housing projects

Achieve Report


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