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Local Contractors Learn About £4m Merthyr Tydfil Project Opportunities

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Opportunities for the local construction industry to win contracts to work on a £4m redevelopment project were outlined at a Merthyr Tydfil ‘Meet the Buyer’ event.

Rock UK Summit Centre in Treharris, formerly the Welsh International Climbing Centre, is looking to double its visitor numbers through the creation of a new 100-bed outdoor education and residential centre over the next 18 months.

Primary contractor Henstaff Construction is offering a wide range of sub-contracting opportunities at the site for services including scaffolding, bricklaying, carpentry, landscaping, decorating, plastering, tiling and cleaning.

Henstaff and Rock UK gave presentations detailing the work to be carried out and the story behind the development.

The project has received £2.3m from the European Regional Development Fund through the Welsh Government, which said it hoped to create a ‘step-change’ in the sustainability of the centre and local employment prospects.

As well as financial and development support from Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council, funding has also been obtained from a range of other organisations, including the Ffos-y-fran Community Fund.

“The County Borough Council, Rock UK and Henstaff have held a number of meetings to ensure local business engagement in relation to the opportunities there, and Henstaff are very keen to offer sub-contract work to our local companies,” said said Merthyr Tydfil Council Economic Development & Strategic Tourism Manager Chris Long.

Summit Centre is one of four Rock UK centres across the country which offer activities with conference and meeting venues to schools, families, corporate and community groups, as well as courses for disadvantaged young people and volunteer programmes.

The centre is on the site of the former Trelewis Drift Mine, which closed in 1989.  The Taff Bargoed Development Trust redeveloped the area in 1997, turning it into the Welsh International Climbing Centre, and began working with Rock UK in 2010.

As well as offering more than 180 climbing routes, climbing walls of up to 18 metres high and a world class manmade caving system with a waterfall inside – along with off-site mountain biking, climbing and walking – Summit Centre also runs water-based activities at Taff Bargoed Millennium Park, including open canoeing, kayaking and raft building.

The redevelopment – which will also include a bike skills course, gym, café and children’s play area – is the second phase of a programme of improvement carried out by national Christian charity Rock UK following the opening in 2015 of a high ropes course and floodlit all-weather sports pitch.