Celebrate Dare Valley Country Park’s 50th Anniversary!

Celebrate Dare Valley Country Park’s 50th Anniversary!

Why is RCT Council advertising Dare Valley Country Park Hotel as accommodation when visitors cannot book a room?

Did you know Dare Valley Country Park in Aberdare was the first country park in England and Wales to be created from land previously utilised by industry?  It was opened in 1973 and is now a 500-acre natural oasis, visited by over a quarter of a million people each year who come for the wildlife, walks and to use Gravity Family Bike Park and the fantastic play areas. 

These days, visitors can also stay in the hotel and caravan park and eat at the on-site cafes but it was once the epicentre of the coal mining industry in the Cynon Valley where the rivers and waterways were polluted by industrial and human waste; the trees chopped down for pit props and the valley floor a wasteland of spoil tips.

The coal mined at Dare Valley was extremely sought after. The ‘steam coal’ found there was popularly used in steam ships, steam trains and steam turbines at electric plants. This created an international export market for the coal and contributed to the population growth in the area.

1971 saw the future of this site change for the better – work began to reclaim the derelict land – once scarred by our mining past. The venture involved the levelling of coal tips, rerouting the River Dare and the creation of two lakes, that can be seen here today.

The park is now one of the best examples of land regeneration in a coal spoil environment in Britain and a thriving tourist destination, much loved by residents and visitors from all over the UK – so we think that’s a reason to celebrate!

A Christmas themed event will take place on December 3rd, from 12pm – 5pm and there’ll be lots of activities including:

A synthetic Ice Rink
Giant snow globe
Children’s fun fair rides
Festive Face Painting
Santa’s Grotto

Each attraction will be token based with all apart from Santa’s Grotto only costing 1 token. Tokens are £1 each and will be available from the token booth. Santa’s Grotto will cost 2 tokens per child and each child will receive a gift.

The Cynon Valley Model Railway Club will also be in the Visitor Centre with their fantastic railway displays.

Cllr Ann Crimmings, Cabinet Member for Environment and Leisure said:
Dare Valley Country Park is a real gem in the heart of the Cynon Valley. Visitors return time and again and it’s not hard to see why.  The walks are spectacular and the bio-diversity is incredible. Here you will find the most southerly Glacial Cwms in the British Isles for example.  You’d have to travel thousands of miles further South through Europe, to the Pyrenees and Alps mountain ranges, before you found other such examples.
Just as dramatic as the glacial mountains and crags here are the lakes, wide, open spaces of meadows, woodland, moorland and cliffs. Of course the park has grown in recent years and has a lot more to offer.  Adventure lovers come to ride the trails at Gravity Family Bike Park and others travel to stay in the hotel and caravan site for a relaxing getaway.  A new exhibition will open in the Visitor Centre in early 2024 which will show the evolution of the park from the Industrial Revolution to today.  In the meantime, please come and celebrate 50 wonderful years of Dare Valley Country Park on Sunday 3rd December!

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Team @ AberdareOnline

Team @ AberdareOnline

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