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Plas Heli

The Welsh National Sailing Academy and Events Centre .


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Pwllheli Centre sets sail for success

The National Sailing Academy and Events Centre project in Pwllheli has taken another significant step forward with the appointment of architects for the exciting scheme.

Ellis-Williams Architects have been selected to design the iconic centre and local architects Dobson:Owen will play a pivotal role in the project by consulting and coordinating the process with both Gwynedd Council and the local community.

The flagship project has secured around £4 million of funding from both the European Union’s Convergence programme and the Welsh Government’s Targeted Match Funding.

When it opens in 2013, the Sailing Academy promises to attract thousands of extra visitors to the area every year, to offer first class sailing opportunities and training for local people and a much needed new community facility for the town.

Councillor Dyfed Edwards, Leader of Gwynedd Council, said: “Gwynedd Council’s Economy and Community Department has been working on this ambitious project for five years. We are delighted that it has passed another milestone with the appointment of Ellis-Williams Architects and Pwllheli-based Dobson:Owen Architects.

“Local people can look forward to seeing tangible progress in the very near future with building work expected to start next summer and the project due to be completed by autumn 2013.

“Pwllheli already has an outstanding reputation as one of the best sailing venues in the British Isles and for attracting national and international sailing events and regattas.

“By working with our partners to invest in the infrastructure we are confident that we can attract bigger and more frequent races and competitions to the area. Our research shows that this new development will attract an extra 12,000 visitors all of whom will need accommodation and food plus services provided by local marine traders.

“As well as the obvious economic boost, the sailing academy will also provide local people, and children especially, the opportunity to take part in water sports. This in turn will lead to more of our young people developing careers in the local outdoor activities sector.”


1 – (left to right) Gareth Wright a Huw Williams o from Gwynedd Consultancy Service; Llyr Jones of the Council’s Economy and Community Department; Stephen Tudor of Pwllheli Sailing Club; y Councillor Dyfed Edwards, Leader of Gwynedd Council; Huw Owen of Dobson:Owen architects and Dominic Williams of Ellis-Williams Architects.

2 - (left to right) Stephen Tudor of Pwllheli Sailing Club; y Councillor Dyfed Edwards, Leader of Gwynedd Council; Huw Owen of Dobson:Owen Architects and Dominic Williams of Ellis-Williams Architects.


For more information about this project, visit the website

The £8.3 million National Sailing Academy and Events Centre at Pwllheli is a prime example of how European funding can bring opportunity and prosperity to Gwynedd. For more information about the different support available and how to apply for funding, or for details about the projects visit www.gwynedd.gov.uk/europe or contact the Council’s Specialist European Team on 01286 679 343 or email SpecialistEuropeanTeam

RYA welcomes the Academy Funding News. We have received many messages of overwhelming support from members and friends following the announcement of finance for the Academy project. Please look at the prospectus for more information or send an e-mail to news@pwllhelisailingclub.co.uk.

The RYA have also expressed their support for the project and their press release can be seen here.  ' The Royal Yachting Association has applauded an £8million investment by the Welsh Assembly Government into the development of a National Sailing Academy and major events centre at Pwllheli, North Wales. 

 £8m for Pwllheli Sailing Academy and Events Centre

An innovative scheme to create a world class watersports and outdoor activity centre which will drive forward tourism and boost the North Wales economy has been backed with £8m the Minister for Heritage, Alun Ffred Jones, has announced today (Monday, 13 December).
Gwynedd Council’s £8.3 m plans for a National Sailing Academy and Pwllheli Events Centre will receive Welsh Assembly Government backing from the European Regional Development Fund and the Targeted Match Fund, creating some 8.5 jobs and further employment opportunities as the development gets underway.


The new chief executive of the RYA, Sarah Treseder, visited Clwb Hwylio Pwllheli Sailing Club ......

Gareth Roberts, Bob Lowe, Sarah Treseder, Chris Basten and Stephen Tudor

Follow this link to see the article in the Daily Post on Wednesday 25th November 2009. Link here to pdf file.

The Prospectus is available here.



The project vision is to create a Welsh National Sailing Academy and Events Centre that maximises the potential afforded by the natural location and world class sailing waters around Pwllheli. The facility will develop and build upon the existing reputation of the location and it will confirm Pwllheli as an internationally renowned dinghy sailing venue.

As a Centre of Excellence for sail training it will provide state of the art facilities for sailors at all levels of competence and abilities. In addition to providing for the hosting of dinghy events of national and international standard the facilities provided will also cater for keelboat events, yachting regattas and other water sport activities.

The facility will exhibit a distinct identity by promoting the Welsh language and culture. Furthermore through joint participation the facility will be sustainable and bring long-term economic benefit to the local area and its multi-purpose function will provide for use by local communities, businesses, schools and other training providers.

The Centre will make a significant contribution to the development of Pwllheli Harbour and complement Hafan Pwllheli by providing new visitor berths and on-shore facilities for visiting yachtsmen.

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Plas Heli Cyf is a Community Enterprise, Not for Profit Distribution Company

Associates and Affiliates

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Contact Information

Plas Heli Cyf. Glan y Don, Pwllheli, Gwynedd LL53 5YT

Bar:        01758 614 442
Office:   01758 613 343 - Please note: the telephone is not manned and your enquiries would be attended to more efficiently if you send an e-mail to the appropriate department see contact us here

Company Registration No. 08082514
VAT No. GB 164061430