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New bouldering centre for Cardiff

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 Steve Mayers 05 Apr 2020

SMVK Climbing Ltd are excited to announce plans for a new bouldering centre in Cardiff!

Until now we have been reluctant to make any announcements about the plans as it might be seen as a bit incongruous during the Coronavirus crisis, at a time when so many businesses (including of course climbing walls) are fighting for their survival. However, the planning application was submitted and the lease agreed in early March - at the moment things are running their course albeit more slowly than in normal times. Despite all of the uncertainty we are remaining positive about the project and hope that the announcement will provide some much needed positive news.

The new centre will be located to the west of the city centre on Freemans Parc (just off Penarth Road) in a recently built 1,200sqm unit. We will draw on 26 years experience of designing, building and operating climbing walls with focus on a modern design, state of the art holds and most importantly making the centre a spacious and comfortable place to climb, train and socialise.

The consultation process for the planning application is open until 10th April. If you would like to view or comment you can access the full application on the Cardiff City Council planning portal via the link below. Any support will be gratefully received.

https://planningonline.cardiff.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=makeComment&keyVal=_CARDIFF_DCAPR_130587  

More information, a name for the centre and images of what to expect hopefully coming soon!

Thanks
Steve Mayers

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 myrddinmuse 05 Apr 2020
In reply to Steve Mayers:

Very exciting news Steve! Cardiff has been crying out for some competition for years. We have the people, we have the crags locally, I'm glad you found a space.

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 Steve Mayers 06 Apr 2020
In reply to myrddinmuse: Thanks for the encouraging words! Thanks also to the people who have taken the time to log on to the Cardiff planning portal and register their support - it's much appreciated!

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 myrddinmuse 06 Apr 2020
In reply to Steve Mayers:

No worries! Lots of Cardiff University students have been waiting for this for years and are very happy to say so! 😁 

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 Stone Muppet 07 Apr 2020

How do you do the demographic modelling for this stuff? I wonder if it misses visiting climbers and existing climbers and just goes on resident population - hence how Bristol attracts 5 climbing walls, Cardiff 2 (hopefully), Cheltenham and Gloucester 1 each but nobody is building one in Chepstow which would appeal to the climbers who moved here and to people bailing from the Wye valley in the rain?

(Full disclosure I live in the wye valley)

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 Steve Mayers 07 Apr 2020
In reply to Stone Muppet: Good question! I guess somewhere like the Beacon in North Wales (which I'm involved with) is modelled mainly on existing and visiting climbers. N Wales has plenty of both but of course climbers are a fickle lot and you don't tend to see much of them as soon as the sun shines.

City walls are modelled on existing climbers but also the assumption that you'll generate a market of people who see climbing walls as a gym alternative. It's this latter group that make walls profitable and of course the bigger the population the better the potential.

Unfortunately the population of Chepstow is very small and the number of existing/visiting climbers isn't anything like N Wales. But...you never know climbing is (or at least was) growing massively in popularity and at quite a pace so maybe!

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 Stone Muppet 07 Apr 2020
In reply to Steve Mayers:

Fair point on all fronts. There must be loads of small towns that aren't viable locations for large climbing walls, but maybe would work for a small scale project if it was integrated with an already successful sports centre, cafe, softplay etc. After all to replace a gym you have to be situated as close as the gym. Good luck in Cardiff, it's a wonder that Boulders didn't appear until it did!

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 Steve Mayers 10 Apr 2020
In reply to Steve Mayers:

Thanks again to everybody that took the time to write a supporting comment on the Cardiff Council planning portal it's really appreciated. Fingers crossed we'll get a positive decision on the change of use soon and when we do I'll start posting a bit more detail on here.

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 Nichhh 09 May 2020
In reply to myrddinmuse:

Yeah, so excited! 

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 myrddinmuse 13 May 2020
In reply to Stone Muppet:

A great example of the kind of spot you describe is the Cube in Port Talbot! A great little wall (very little) that's regularly set and upgraded by local climbers, with a high quality training area and woody attached. It's integrated into the YMCA and run with a community focus, really neat. Not very profitable but why would it need to be, it has its own niche!

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 climbermatt 14 Aug 2020
In reply to Steve Mayers:

Hi Steve, 

Great to hear that there’s a new centre! As a climber who also enjoys the gym, a training area which focuses on general strength as well as climbing strength would be highly appreciated. Think Flashpoint (Bristol) where they have a bench press, rings, dumbbells, scaffold etc as well as fingerboards and a woody. I find a gym session after climbing training completes a good workout!

Also for me, a good shower is a must. Nothing better than a fresh feeling after a sweaty session. 


Excited for the new centre 😁

Cheers,

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 Steve Mayers 18 Aug 2020
In reply to climbermatt:

Thanks for your comments and a 'gym' area is definitely a consideration as we have a decent size mezz. It would be great to have a chat some time about the type of apparatus that would be most useful.

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In reply to Steve Mayers:

Just want to say this is brilliant news for Cardiff, the city really needs some options in terms of indoor climbing venues. Good luck with it!

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