Planning secured for 4 'Arosfan' sites in Gwynedd
Planning permission has been secured to trial four 'Arosfan' sites in locations in Gwynedd which will offer a dedicated site for motorhomes and campervans to stay overnight.
This follows a desire to ensure better management of the field and detailed research, with the intention of offering an overnight location to motorhomes and campervans similar to 'aires' seen on the continent.
Following securing planning permission for sites in the Doc Fictoria car park (former Shell site) in Caernarfon; Y Glyn in Llanberis; the Maes car park in Cricieth and Cei’r Gogledd (North Quay) in Pwllheli, work on the ground is progressing to develop the provision. Work continues to try to identify a suitable site for providing an Arosfan location in the Meirionnydd area.
Councillor Nia Jeffreys, Cyngor Gwynedd Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Economic Development said:
"This is an important step and a clear sign that we as a Council want to develop a sustainable tourism sector that respects Gwynedd’s communities.
"Over the last few years, we have seen many more motorhomes and campervans visiting our areas, and it is natural that visitors want to enjoy what the area has to offer.
"The 'Arosfan' sites are located within walking distance of key towns and destinations here in Gwynedd and offer a maximum stay of 48 hours.
"The intention is to encourage the use of local transport links and infrastructure as well as ensuring that local businesses don’t miss out as people come to enjoy the unique tourism experience that Gwynedd has to offer."
Each of the Arosfan sites will offer space for up to nine motor homes which will pay a fee to park for a maximum of 48 hours. They will include facilities for fresh water, chemical wastewater, recycling and general refuse.
A communication plan will be implemented over the coming months to include online campaigns reminding visitors to camp legally and support businesses by using local campsites. Prominent messaging will also be placed within the Arosfan sites to ensure that site regulations are followed. Activities associated with traditional campsites, such as campfires and barbecues, will not be permitted.
To coincide with the Arosfan sites, Cyngor Gwynedd is also introducing specific orders that will prevent the right of motor homes to park overnight in lay-bys in areas that have seen examples of irresponsible parking and camping over the past few years.
The Council's intention in introducing these orders on the A496 on the way into Bermo (Barmouth), on the A497 near Cricieth and Y Foryd area near Caernarfon will be to strengthen the Council's powers to regulate the area to respond to the challenges that arise in some locations in the county with these vehicles parking overnight without a right.
Councillor Dafydd Meurig, Cyngor Gwynedd's Environment Cabinet Member, said:
"I welcome the fact that the plans to trial the Arosfan sites are going ahead - it offers us an opportunity to improve the management of motorhomes here in Gwynedd.
"By trialling these initial sites, it will be possible to monitor how the development is working and consider if there is room for improvement and adaptation if we want to see more similar places being established.
"In addition to the Arosfan sites, it is good to see that new orders are being introduced as part of a wider effort to tackle illegal overnight camping in specific problem areas."
With planning permission now in place for 4 Arosfan sites, the necessary preparation work will be progressing over the coming weeks to get the locations ready. It is expected that the sites will be open in time for this summer.
Cyngor Gwynedd has secured funding through the Welsh Government's Brilliant Basics programme to trial the Arosfan locations.