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Snowdonia National Park celebrates 70th anniversary

From high craggy peaks, remote tranquil moorlands and lush green ravines opening out to expanses of awe-inspiring estuaries, Snowdonia (Eryri) in North Wales has it all. On 18 October 2021, this special area celebrated 70 years since its designation as a National Park, and to mark the occasion the National Park Authority has organised a number of events and activities.

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The designation of Snowdonia as a National Park came about in the wake of the UK’s National Parks and Access to the Countryside Act 1949, which ensured that designated areas of natural beauty, their culture and wildlife were protected from overdevelopment and safeguarded for the nation.

Snowdonia was designated a National Park on 18 October 1951. It was the first National Park in Wales and the third in the United Kingdom after the Peak District and the Lake District. Snowdonia is an area of 823 square miles, stretching from the uplands of Conwy in the north to Aberdyfi in the south. 

This remarkable film to mark the anniversary shows Snowdonia through the years

Today, the National Park is regarded as one of the most remarkable natural environments in the world. In addition to the rugged mountains and dramatic landscapes, the unique culture and heritage of the park, as well as the Welsh language, which is at the heart of its identity, continue to lure visitors from the four corners of the globe.

The National Park has faced many challenges over the years when responding to and embracing the advancement of technology, transport and changing ways of life, but it prides itself on the fact that Snowdonia’s special qualities continue to flourish to this day.

Many exciting projects and special events are being held to mark the 70th anniversary. Various local artists have been commissioned to create works of art to celebrate Eryri, which will be available to enjoy through a digital map. The National Park’s conservation service has also invited communities to help plant 5,000 native trees across the park, one for each resident celebrating a 70th birthday and every child to be born in 2021.

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To record seventy years of park life, the National Park Authority has rummaged through old photographs to create an online image gallery. As well as using dust-coated photos from the authority’s library, the public are being invited to contribute to the gallery by submitting photos that record their experiences of living, working or visiting the National Park.

During the week leading up to the big day a special journey took place from the north of the park to the south, with staff, volunteers, members and partners completing sections on foot, on wheels and through water! The journey finished in Aberdyfi on 18 October, where there was a small celebration – a fitting end after a very challenging 18 months since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Wyn Ellis Jones, Chairman of the Snowdonia National Park Authority, said: “This year’s celebration comes at a significant time in our history, as we emerge from one of the most challenging periods since our designation – for both the communities and for us as an authority. There is no doubt that times have changed in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, but with such passionate and committed staff, volunteers, members and partners, I’m confident that Eryri will continue to be just as special to our future generations.” 

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Janet Redler, Chief Exectuive of Janet Redler Travel & Tourism, said: “As a native of North Wales, growing up in and around Snowdonia, I’ve known this beautiful part of the world all my life. The National Park designation has been vital in helping to protect this very special place and long may it continue, so that many more people can enjoy its dramatic landscape, unique culture and fascinating history.”

If you or your group would like to enjoy a tailor-made tour of Wales, including a visit to the magnificent Snowdonia National Park, please do contact our friendly team today. Snowdonia is also perfect for one of our personalised Walking Tours or for the more energetic, a highly memorable Adventure Tour.

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