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Last Updated: Wednesday, 9 July, 2003, 05:48 GMT 06:48 UK
Euros accepted at four castles
euro coins
Euros are to open the castle doors at four of Wales' top heritage sites
Euros are to be common currency at four top tourist attractions this summer.

Welsh assembly culture minister Alun Pugh has announced that Caernarfon, Conwy, Tintern and Caerphilly castles will all accept the European currency.

The trial will allow visitors from eurozone countries to spend their cash at the four sites without having to convert their euro notes to Sterling.

Wales' heritage body, Cadw, will extend the scheme to its other attractions if it proves to be a success.

Mr Pugh's announcement came ahead of his visit on Wednesday to open a new visitor centre at Caerphilly Castle.

He said: "The decision to accept the euro will benefit many tourists from other parts of Europe who will be visiting the wide variety of attractions on offer in Wales.

Caerphilly Castle
More than 80,000 people, many with euros, visit Caerphilly Castle annually

"Caerphilly Castle is the largest castle in Wales, and it receives about 80,000 visitors a year.

"Accepting the mainstream currency of the European Union is a logical response to the pattern of visitors."

Cadw will roll Euro acceptance out across all of the Cadw trading sites for the 2004-2005 season.

Trading in euros is nothing new for retailers in Llangollen, north Wales.

Many businesses in the market town have accepted euros from customers for the past 12 months since it became the UK's first official eurozone in July last year in time for the annual Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod.

The eisteddfod's organisers asked firms to accept the dollar as well for this year's event, which runs until 13 July.

And in March last year, Chepstow Racecourse is thought to have become the first major sporting venue in the country to allow visitors - many from the Irish Republic - to pay in euros.




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