Car parks such as the one at Pen y Pass are often full at peak periods. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

Car parks such as the one at Pen y Pass are often full at peak periods. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

National park bosses will launch a study into parking problems around the UK’s most popular mountain.

Almost 600,000 people make the ascent of Snowdon each year, but the increasing number of visitors are causing problems for both residents and those who come to the area to enjoy the great outdoors.

Snowdonia National Park Authority said, in August, demand on the area’s car parks exceeds the available space on 27 days out of 31.

It is working with Gwynedd and Conwy Councils to develop a long-term strategy to address transport and parking around Snowdon and the surrounding areas as part of the Snowdon Partnership Plan.

The park authority said: “Tourism brings an estimated £69m a year to the local area, but it also brings significant pressures on the mountain and surrounding area.

“Yr Wyddfa [Snowdon] is the most popular mountain in the UK with nearly 600,000 people reaching the summit every year, and is now the second most visited attraction in Wales.

“To ensure the needs of local users are met, to be more sustainable, and to lessen the impact on local communities while also enhancing visitors’ experience our aim is to develop solutions that address these issues in a comprehensive way.

“The first step will be to commission a study of the area in relation to the parking and transport issues.

“The key focus of the study will be to provide recommendations to help us take a sustainable approach to managing the parking and transport problems around Yr Wyddfa.

“It will analyse and summarise all of the relevant data and information; engage with key stakeholders on the needs and challenges; and provide proven options on the way forward. The next step will be implementing these recommendations effectively.”

The new Snowdon partnership officer Catrin Glyn will co-ordinate the study. She said: “One of the key issues raised over and over again when we were developing the Snowdon Partnership Plan was the parking problems in the area.

“Car parks are increasingly beyond capacity in peak season and there are major problems caused by parking in inappropriate locations. This has caused difficulties for local communities and causing road safety issues. This initial study will pave the way in providing a fresh new approach to parking and transport in the area.”

Wales's highest peak is the most visited mountain in Britain. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

Wales's highest peak is the most visited mountain in Britain. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

Cyngor Gwynedd cabinet member for environment, Councillor Gareth Wyn Griffith, said: “Some £3.2m has been invested in transport infrastructure through the Green Key Initiative between 2002 and 2012.

“The main objective of the Green Key Project was to develop opportunities to generate revenue in order to support the public transport requirements in northern Snowdonia and to help maintain some of the footpaths in the area.

“We believe that the Snowdonia Partnership is essential in order to ensure that we work collaboratively in order to build on the success of the past to meet the challenges of the future.”

The Snowdon Partnership includes organisations and landowners responsible for the on-the-ground management of the mountain, ranging from conservation work and path management to tourism, farming and mountain rescue.

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