Funding boost for the Island Site as the Forge on Caernarfon’s old Brunswick site is re-lit

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Gwynedd Council has welcomed the announcement that the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) has earmarked a further £3.3 million to help regenerate the former Slate Quay on Caernarfon waterfront, known as the Island Site, transforming it into a vibrant shopping and tourist hotspot fit for the craftsmen of today.

The Caernarfon Harbour Trust has already received funding from a range of sources including the HLF and the Welsh Government’s Vibrant and Viable Places: Tackling Poverty Fund to help develop the site as part of the Caernarfon Town and Waterfront Regeneration Initiative, formed of Gwynedd Council, Cadw and Welsh Government and partners.

As part of the Regeneration Initiative for the Town, work is progressing on a series of projects along the waterfront and in the town that will aim to ensure that Caernarfon builds on its strengths and becomes a globally iconic destination with the World Heritage Site 13th century castle a stunning backdrop.

One of these projects, STAMP Caernarfon – funded by the Arts Council of Wales’ Ideas: People: Places fund integrates artists, the community and the arts within the wider regeneration developments of old building and specific sites.

The project has worked with the community and artists Something & Son to identify way for people to start re-using the site. As part of the project, strong community engagement showed a clear desire to make use of the forge once again, and has captured the imagination of the local community and was successfully re-lit last Wednesday, 11 May for the first time in a decade.

Councillor Mandy Williams-Davies, Gwynedd Council’s Cabinet Member for the Economy said: “Caernarfon is a town rich in history with strong heritage and cultural assets, and we want to ensure that it has a strong and vibrant future. The Council, alongside its partners in the Town & Waterfront Partnership have worked tirelessly and it is great to see the efforts of all involved beginning to bear fruit.

“This announcement is a major step forward for the future of the Island Site, and the work ongoing to reignite the forge underlines the sites’ potential and act as a catalyst for the rebirth of the entire Waterfront.”

Sian Gwenllian AM said:  “I’m delighted to hear that Caernarfon’s historic waterfront will receive this substantial level of funding from the National Heritage Lottery Fund.”

“This will not only bring new highly skilled jobs & boost the area’s tourism industry, but it will reinvigorate & bring to life this historical landmark that used to be the mainstay in the economic life of Caernarfon.”

There will be an Open Day on the Site during the Caernarfon Food Festival, Saturday,  May 14, between 10am and 5pm, with a warm welcome to all.

For further information about the Caernarfon Waterfront and Town Centre Regeneration Initiative, visit: www.gwynedd.llyw.cymru/CaernarfonRegeneration