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Last Updated: Tuesday, 1 November 2005, 11:54 GMT
Snowdon cafe appeal fund 'secure'
Artist's impression of the Snowdon cafe
A public appeal for the £1.4m shortfall did not raise the money.
The money to build a new cafe on the summit of Snowdon has now been raised, members of the Snowdonia National Park Authority are to be told next week.

A special meeting will hear that the Welsh European Funding Office (Wefo) has said a £4.2m grant has been set aside, enough to allow the go-ahead.

A public appeal over the summer had failed to raise the £1.4m shortfall.

Costs for the cafe and visitor centre scheme have since been cut by £500,000 to £8.5m instead of the original £9m.

'Final approvable'

The park authority will be told on Monday that Wefo has still not completed its full appraisal of the scheme, and therefore has not yet given its final approval.

A report to members says: "Wefo has part appraised the project already and we have no indication that it will fail.

Wefo - £4,216,500
Assembly government - £3m
Welsh Tourist Board - £300,000
Snowdonia Park - £270,000
Snowdon Railway - £217,000
Public appeal - £346,500

"Nevertheless there is a small possibility that the project might not receive final approval."

However, the authority will be urged to press ahead with the first stage of the contract to ensure European money is not lost.

A spokeswoman for Wefo said the original grant was £2,958,000. The additional £1,258,500 had become available from other Objective One sources.

The current cafe on the summit
The concrete cafe, circa 1936, was called a 'slum' by Prince Charles

She said the summit visitor centre project would be subject to an independent appraisal before all the money was committed.

The proposed cafe complex, which would also include a new terminus for Snowdon Mountain Railway, must be completed by no later than early summer 2008 to qualify for the European funding.

This means the existing 70-year-old existing building, once called "the highest slum in Wales" by Prince Charles, must be demolished in autumn next year to allow contractors on site.

Public appeal

About 350,000 people visit Snowdon each year. Snowdonia National Park Authority and the Snowdonia Society launched a worldwide appeal in April 2005 to raise the final £1.7m then needed begin the project.

The closing date to raise the remaining sum was first set for June but was later extended indefinitely.

A spokeswoman for Snowdonia National Park Authority said the organisation would be in a better position to comment after the meeting on Monday.

Snowdon £9m cafe appeal extended
28 Sep 05 |  North West Wales
Lord Snowdon at namesake peak
21 Aug 05 |  North West Wales
Worldwide appeal for Snowdon café
04 Apr 05 |  North West Wales

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