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General Dryslope News
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Ski Rossendale, one of the UK’s leading artificial surface ski areas, located in East Lancashire in the English North West, is hoping to receive £500,000 in funding for a revamp.
The centre has applied for the funding from national public body Sports England which runs an ‘ improved facilities funding scheme’ and intends to upgrade the facility in to a ‘winter sports centre of excellence’.
The project would see an overhaul of buildings and slopes with a new ski rental building, new café and new showers and toilets with disabled access.
The beginner slope and terrain park areas would also be improved and expanded with a new ski surface installed.
David Fuller, operations director at the slope and one of the team involved in taking over and re-opening the centre after a short period of closure in 2010 when the local council pulled funding, told local media, “The aim of this redevelopment is designed to give all our customers an excellent experience both on and off the slopes, to create a place where people can come and enjoy the sports or just spend some leisure time enjoying this unique alpine atmosphere. We want to create a winter sports centre of excellence whilst promoting community participation in recreation and sport.”
The first major Snowflex slope by Briton Engineering Developments Ltd in Asia at Altinoran, Ankara, Turkey is all going to plan with the first deliveries for the 10,000m2 Snowflex® slopes having already been made to site in readiness for a September 2014 installation by Briton’s engineers.
Briton’s managing Director, Brian Thomas, visited the site last week to check on progress and was pleased to see that the Altinoran landscape is undergoing transformation in accordance with Briton’s design for the year-round Snowflex ski slope. The main slope will be approx. 200m long x 45m wide, and the nursery slope will 30m x 39m. Tubing will also take place on the nursery slope.
The main slope, which will cater for recreational snowsporters and adrenaline junkies alike, is an evolution from slopes previously designed and built by Briton. It will include an Olympic type “slope-style run” with a series of kickers, a table top, rollers, waves, three 4m high quarter pipes, a wall ride and a rail park. – the kind of features that Briton has built in several Snowflex® facilities that have produced world class and Olympic athletes. A first class ski lodge is also currently under design.
Snowflex are taking over the world. If their latest project is anything to go by, we reckon they could sell ice to an Eskimo, as they have installed their newest slope in the heart of the Rockies. In fact, maybe they could sell the Eskimo some Snowflex too!
Last week, saw the completion of a brand new 92m long x 18m wide “year round tubing slope” for the YMCA of the Rockies by Briton Engineering Developments Ltd.
The new slope is designed specifically for tubing, and can not only be used in the Spring, Summer, and Autumn, but the high performance Snowflex® slope can also be used throughout the winter if there are months lacking real snow.
Well it all looks a little too rad for the tubers to us, so the YMCA might have to put up a fence to keep those midnight snowboarders out!
The giant waste-to-energy plant now under construction in Copenhagen, Denmark, which will feature a dry ski slope descending along its sides has revealed a piste map showing exactly what type of terrain will be available to skiers and boarders down the sides of the building.
The Amager Bakke waste-to-energy plant will feature green (very easy), blue (easy) and a black (difficult) run on the upper half of the power plant’s exterior shell. The green will snake all the way round to the base of the building with the blue and black runs filtering in to it at the mid-way point.
Alongside the green run on the lower half of the power plant’s exterior will be a toboggan run.
Access to the top of the building will be via elevators. The piste map also shows cross country ski runs and ice skating at the base of the building. It is not clear whether this is intended to be possible for cold winters or if artificial surface cross country trails and ice rink surfaces are planned.
Trees are shown on the exterior of the building in the architect’s plans but it is not clear as yet whether these will be real trees and whether gladed skiing and boarding will be possible.
The plant is due to be completed and commission in 2017 and will burn 70 tonnes of waste per hour, treating around 400,000 tonnes of waste annually produced by 500,000 – 700,000 inhabitants and at least 46,000 companies to supply a minimum of 50,000 households with electricity and 120,000 households with district heating.
Fancy getting in to the industry? Well there's a duty manager job up for grabs at Plymouth, which is part of the Nike group.
Active Nation’s Alpine Snowsports Southampton saw over 35 people come and have a go at freestyle skiing and snowboarding, as well as 20+ spectators at the launch event of a new regular freestyle night on Friday. Olympic hero Billy Morgan was back at the slope where he started almost 10 years ago, riding the brand new freestyle features and giving tips and advice to the adults and youngsters taking part.
Billy said “Friday evening at the freestyle launch was awesome. It’s been a few years since I’ve ridden down at the Alpine Centre like that. Rocking up to see heaps of people of all ages enjoying it like I did when I was younger is so inspiring, especially when there’s some really talented kids. I hope that it carries on, grows the freestyle scene and allows us to build on and improve the slope and features”.
Lead Freestyle Instructor, Will Morris added “It was such a great turn out, awesome to see some old faces from years gone by. It was a brilliant atmosphere with seasoned riders passing on knowledge to the new generation of shredders!”
The Programme Manager for Active Nation, Hayley Walker said “There were new faces there as well as some of our regular members of the race team turning to freestyle and you could feel the buzz as everyone got excited about freestyle once again. Active Nation is a sport and exercise charity dedicated to getting the nation active and especially at grass roots level in any sport. Sochi has had a huge effect on everyone and we would love to see our young skiers and boarders follow in Billy’s footsteps. It’s the start of something big at Alpine Snowsports and we hope it is here to stay.”
Freestyle Fridays run every week from 18:00 – 21:30 and include ramps, rails, slide box, quarter pipe plus other features. Cost for sessions is £15 for adults and £11.50 for juniors, or included in the 30 day practice pass at £30 adults and £23 for juniors. Freestyle Fridays also forms part of Snowsport England’s participation campaign GO SKI GO BOARD.
For more information visit www.goskigoboard.org.uk and www.activenation.org.uk
Councillors voted unanimously to reject plans to demolish the former Sheffield Ski Village site because of concerns over its future use.
Planning board councillors voted to overturn a recommendation by planners to approve the application, which concerned the demolition of fire damaged buildings, ground levelling and filling over former buildings.
Coun Peter Price, who remembered when the ski village was created, said it could ‘spoil’ the site and added “There are all sorts of options for the site to be used for leisure and for the good of people living in the area.”
The application - which did not concern future development - was previously deferred because councillors had too many questions.
There are hopes a new Olympic snow sport hub could be created at the site, or that it could form part of a country park.
Objectors spoke out against the plans.
Councillors also discussed enforcement action to have the site cleared up.
Applicant Kevin Pullan said he would appeal the decision.
He told The Star: “We will relish the appeal because it will clarify the future use of the site, whether it is business use or employment use as different planning documents say two things.”
He said filling in the depression was a sustainable way to clear the site and he needed planning permission to demolish fire-damaged buildings as part of the clear-up of the land.
[Full article on The Star]
Community group Snowsport for Sheffield said "This has all been possible thanks to the hard work put in by members of the group, everyone who has objected to the planning and Friends Of Parkwood Springs."
Kevin Pullan was the owner of the Sheffield Ski Village. Current plans to develop some housing are unlikely to proceed with the council blocking the development. Kevin says he is willing to hand over the lease for free to any party that is able to put forward a realistic plan for the site. However, he says the UK's indoor slopes killed SSV a long time before the fires that devastated the site and that the day of the dryslope is over.
Read the full article here.
Two years after a series of fires devastated Sheffield Ski Village, the future for what was one of the world’s foremost dry slope ski centres remains unresolved.
Following the fires the site has been left derelict and been targeted by metal thieves amongst others.
Sheffield Sharks Ski Club, whose members included Britain’s number one freestyle skier James Woods, have been training on indoor snow at Castleford Snozone but have also been among those moving to reopen the slopes, which were reported to be initially largely undamaged by the fire.
This week a decision on plans to demolish derelict buildings was delayed by Sheffield City Council.
The plans were to clear the site, with no decision on its longer term future, but there appears to be a conflict in the direction of future use of the site.
Some local people, known as the Friends of Parkwood Springs, want a country park to be created in the area, however Kevin Pullan who controls the site aims to build homes near the site, where there are also hopes of recreating a snowsports facility. He told local media it was not right that the land be turned in to parkland as it is officially designated as an area for employment.
Sheffield Ski Village was instrumental in the formation of the Snowboard and Freeski scenes in the UK
Plymouth Ski and Snowboard Centre is recruiting; we're looking for Instructors, Technicians, Reception and Bar work. Get in touch with James Pitcher (Head of Snow School) if you're interested email@example.com or 01752 600 220.
The value of training to the highest levels on artificial surface ski slopes has been proven yet again by the success of Liberty University's ski and snowboard team at the recent 36th United States Collegiate Ski and Snowboard Association (USCSA) Championships at Whiteface Mountain in Lake Placid, N.Y, site of the 1980 Winter Olympic Games.
The University is home to the Liberty Mountain Snowflex Centre which features the premium high performance, synthetic ski slope system and is continuing to show proven results as a training ground for skiers and snowboarders. The Liberty Flames’ men’s snowboarders are among the teams who train here finished runners-up in that 36th USCSA National Championships.
The Rail Jam was a new event added to the National Competition this year and the Flames made the most of the opportunity to implement the skills they've perfected on rail features at the Liberty Mountain Snowflex Centre (LMSC) in Lynchburg, Virginia. Having the only on-campus, year-round ski slope facility in the country has helped the recently formed Liberty team in teaching and training for competitions.
The Liberty Flames, led by juniors Kevin Hoff and Isaac Gibson, finished second out of 10 teams overall with 21 points, behind only Westminster College (15 points) and ahead of Sierra Nevada College (25), Western Colorado State University (30), and the University of Virginia (46), a South-eastern Conference rival.
“There’s a lot of good schools here, good riders from out west,” first-year Head Coach Ryan Leeds said. “The team was showcasing the kind of manoeuvres they've been doing all year (at LMSC). We had a blast and we definitely made a name for ourselves. A lot of people were asking about Liberty and about Snowflex, so it was a great recruiting tool and great publicity. A lot of the western schools were pumped on Liberty.”
LMSC is the first slope of its kind in North America and it has proven itself as an ideal training location. Leeds said his riders have an edge over other teams in the Southeast Conference because Snowflex gives them a more reliable place to train, and to try extreme stunts without as great a risk of injury.
“The surface doesn’t hurt as much when you fall so it allows us to really push the level of progression more than you would probably be allowed to on snow,” Leeds said. “Because Snowflex lets you build in so much repetition, once you get past the mental block of the fear of falling, the fundamentals of every trick you do just fall into place and it usually is a really easy transition (to snow). Everything starts to click because you’ve already developed that muscle memory on Snowflex.”
Drew Sherwood, General Manager of LMSC, said Liberty hopes to see one or more of the athletes who train there make the U.S. Olympic team.
“We definitely have some young rising stars that in the next five to 10 years could have a good chance at it,” he said.
With the success of their past “Off-Season Competitions”, LMSC will host The 2014 Snowflex Games, (formerly called the Dew Games) in Lynchburg, VA on April 25-26, with amateur and professional riders competing for US$15,000 in prize money in a variety of skiing and snowboarding Big Air and Rail Jam events. Registration can be found at Snowflex@liberty.edu.
MK Enterprises are ready to supply their Playgrass Ski Carpet slope surface to the newly extended ski area at the volunteer-run Kidsgrove Ski Centre in England, which is celebrating 40 years of operations this year.
The new slope was conceived two years ago and initial work commenced last summer on phase 1, a mini ‘slope-style’ course – one of very few in the UK.
“We are on schedule to recommence construction of our new ski areas. The work will begin in the spring whilst the club is still open but to enable work to continue and to try to ensure we will be able to open on time for the new season in September, we will have to close the club a month earlier i.e. at the end of May instead of at the end of June,” said a Club statement.
A new ski lift has been ordered and should be installed by 31st July 2014 although a planned second lift, a travellator by the nursery area, has been delayed due to lack of funding.
The new slope will have a further 2300sqm of Playgrass Ski Carpet to make the park and will be open for the end of September.
The first major Snowflex® slope by Briton Engineering Developments Ltd in Asia at Altinoran, Ankara, Turkey is all going to plan and is keeping pace with the Sinpaº Group’s challenging construction programme.
The material for the 10,000m2 (107,640sqft) Snowflex® slopes (together with all the ancillary engineering components for the misting, water recycling and specialist water treatment works) is presently in production, with the first shipment due to leave Briton’s Holmfirth factory in the next two weeks. The first of around twenty 40ft containers will arrive on site at the beginning of May 2014 ready for installation by Briton’s engineers.
Altinoran’s slopes presently being prepared for the Snowflex® installation
The Altinoran landscape is presently undergoing a colossal transformation for the construction of the year-round Snowflex® ski slope. The main slope which will cater for recreational snowsporters and adrenaline junkies alike will be approx. 200m long x 45m wide, and the nursery slope will 30m x 30m. Tubing will also take place on the nursery slope.
The main slope, which is an evolution from slopes previously built, will include a “slope-style run” with a series of kickers, a table top, rollers, waves, three 4m high quarter pipes, a wall ride and a rail park – the kind of features that Briton has built in several Snowflex® facilities that have produced world class and Olympic athletes. A ski lodge is also currently under construction. The grand opening for the slopes and lodge is presently planned for October 2014.
For more information about the Snowflex® slopes at Altinoran, Ankara please visit www.sinpasaltinoran.com.tr/eng/hakkimizda/sinpas-yapi-endustri.php and www.snowflex.com/news/latest
Sheffield Ski Village was a proper dryslope resort and one of the first to embrace SnowFlex as a more forgiving surface and cater specifically for freestyle with permanent features. The centre boasted the UK's only halfpipe; a halfpipe on which local boy Dom Harington learnt the skills that would eventually see him compete in the Sochi Olympics.
This was all before the rise of indoor slopes both north and south of Sheffield, which saw a gradual decline in business. SSV even had its own plans to go indoors, complete with a gondola from the city centre, but these plans fell through. The remoteness of the site left the slope vulnerable to theft and vandalism. In the early hours of Sunday 12thApril 2012, the main lodge went up in flames, although that was rules not to have been started deliberately by police. However, subsequent arson attacks in the following months put paid to any real hopes of the slope ever re-opening. The insurance industry suggested insuring the site as is, would be very difficult. The current owner plans to sell the land for housing.
However, during the Sochi games the Sheffield Ski Village was often mentioned as being key to many of our top athlete's success in winter sports. It would be great to see the slope rise once more and the additional of an indoor freestyle academy would be of huge benefit to the UK's freestyle athletes. This could arguably be built just about anywhere, but there's no doubting the nostalgia surrounding SSV and desire to see the location thrive once more.
Now, a community group are determined to bring the UK's former premier winter sports facility back from its current derelict state.
An online petition organised by Snowsport for Sheffield has already gathered nearly 4000 signatures in less than a month and a community launch meeting has been arranged for 10.30am, Wednesday 26th March at the Forum Bar in Sheffield, S3 7SB. All interested members of the public and press are welcome to attend.
Press release from Snowsport For Sheffield
The shame of Sheffield’s ski village being left to slide into a sorry state has already gained national media attention. At a time when Team GB celebrates winning its first ever Olympic medal on the snow at Sochi, the former training home for many of the freestyle snowsport athletes lies in ruins.
This is why community group ‘Snowsport for Sheffield’ have started early discussions with a range of investors, designers and funding authorities to rebuild on the previous successes of Sheffield Ski Village and inspire the next generation of skiers and snowboarders.
Snowsport for Sheffield have ambitious plans to develop a new world class facility which would be home to a comprehensive range of snowsport activities. The overall aim is to firmly put Sheffield back on the map as a centre of snowsport excellence.
At the heart of the group's passion lies the knowledge that freestyle stars such as James Woods, James Machon, and Katie Summerhayes for Team GB had invaluable access to the Sheffield Ski Village during their formative years. They progressed from the nursery slopes and with hard work forged inside this supportive infrastructure became Olympic athletes.
The Ski Village, which has remained closed for over a year, has fallen victim to arson attacks. The owner of the 16.5 acre site has now applied for planning permission to build 70 houses on it. Snowsport believe that a site with such a strong sporting history should be re-invested in and brought back to life.
As Paul Yiend committee member for Snowsport Sheffield puts it, “Head coach of Team GB’s Freeski team Pat Sharples has recently stated how athletes’ freestyle Olympic success was down to the Sheffield Ski Village. UK centres in general are suffering from serious underinvestment, deterioration and lack of innovative planning. We envisage creating a world class facility that will nurture talent and provide access to future Olympic winter sports champions.”
Snowsport for Sheffield is a working group of professional individuals with a passion to see the
resurgence of Sheffield as the innovative and leading centre for snowsport in the UK.
Sheffield was once a leading light in the snowsport industry, boasting Europe’s largest artificial Ski and Snowboard Centre. The creative vision of Sheffield Ski Village established a groundbreaking approach to artificial slopes worldwide. It was home to Europe’s largest artificial terrain, including the first and only permanent halfpipe, multiple runs, mogul field and extensive nursery slopes. In partnership with Sport England, Sheffield Ski Village was also able to provide a freestyle water jump facility, which cemented its reputation as a centre of excellence for freestyle training.
The grass roots attitude of the Ski Village broke down all of the barriers and perceptions historically associated with snowsports. It ensured access for all by providing affordable lessons to the general public, schools and youth groups in South Yorkshire and across the wider region. As a direct result of these facilities the vast majority of Great Britain’s Freestyle Ski and Snowboard Team have established themselves not only on The World Tour, but more recently in the
Sochi Winter Olympic Games.
As a result of the recent tragic demise of the Ski Village, the site and surrounding area has become a target for vandalism and crime. The once vibrant and economically successful facility is now a barren wasteland with the possibility of a housing development. The complete demise of such a notable sporting venue would be a tragedy, not only for the status and economic value the Ski Village brings to the city. The loss would also severely limit the snowsport opportunities for the children and young people of Sheffield. Should the envisaged housing development go ahead the likelihood of ever seeing such a wealth of talent from Sheffield at another Winter Olympic Games is highly unlikely. A truly saddening prospect.
We do not want this to be the untimely end of Sheffield’s snowsport heritage. With the help of passionate, forward-thinking and like-minded individuals we can change this outcome by putting in place facilities which will benefit many and change peoples lives. Our objectives will ensure we realise this...
Briton Engineering Developments, the British company behind the Snowflex surface, has announced it has signed a contract to design and build the first major Snowflex® slope on the Asian continent.
The slope will be a key attraction for the Sinpas Group and their prestigious Altinoran development in Ankara, Turkey.
The year-round Snowflex facility will cater for recreational snowsports and for adrenaline junkies with a 200m long x 45m wide main slope and a 30m x 30m nursery slope.
The main slope will include a series of kickers, a table top, rollers, waves, a 4m high quarter pipe and a rail park - features such as those built by Briton around the world that has already produced world class and Olympic athletes. It is envisaged that tubing will also take place on the nursery slope.
A ski lodge will also be built, permitting parties and other special events. Construction is due to begin in May 2014 with an anticipated grand opening in October 2014.
The Altinoran project is a major development combining 10,300 residential units with a total building area of 1,850,000m2. Located in Çankaya, a prestigious district in Ankara, the Altinoran Project is currently Turkey’s largest residential Project.
In addition to the 10,000m2 (107,640sqft) Snowflex® slopes that will be one of the central attractions to the development, other amenities will include Central Square where events and concerts will take place, an ice rink, hiking trails, a climbing centre, fitness areas, nature trails, cable car system as well as a multitude of cafés, bars, restaurants and shopping for Altinoran’s residents.
The new slope will be a part of the Sinpaş development
Last Saturday Burton took over a section of Snowtrax’s Dryslope in Christchurch with The Burton Riglet Park. This is what they had to say...
The Riglet Park gives children a chance to experience snowboarding from the ages 3-6. Mother nature obviously approves of our Riglet scheme as we where graced with a decent patch of fair weather for the event in amongst the storms that have been battering the south coast these past few weeks.
Over 87 kids turn up to experience snowboarding in the 3 hours we where there. Lots of kids wanting to be the next Jamie Nicholls or Jenny Jones, so the Olympic Games are already showing positive signs of attracting the younger audience to snowboarding.
The kids put the Riglet Park through its paces as well as the team of budding young instructors towing them round. With gold medals being handed out left right and centre, claims of ‘never skiing again’ and showing there certificates off to there class mates at school on Monday. The Burton Riglet Park really did give these kids a taste of snowboarding, so much so the Saturday club for the following weekend has filled up fast.
The success of the Burton Riglet Park continues so keep your eyes out for more events coming soon.
Snowtrax are now teaching on the Riglet format so if you want to teach your kids to snowboard give them a call on 01202 499 155
Burton, pulling kids in the right direction.
Hot on the heels of the success in the Winter Olympics in Sochi Briton Engineering Developments is delighted to announce it has signed a contract to design and build the first major Snowflex® slope on the Asian continent. The slope will be a key attraction for the Sinpaş Group and their prestigious Altinoran development in Ankara, Turkey.
The Altinoran project is an outstanding development combining 10,300 residential units with a total building area of 1,850,000m2. Located in Çankaya, a most prestigious district in Ankara, the Altınoran Project with its impressive social facilities, is Turkey’s largest residential Project.
In addition to the 10,000m2 (107,640sqft) Snowflex® slopes that will be one of the central attractions to the development, other amenities will include Central Square where events and concerts will take place, an ice rink, hiking trails, a climbing centre, fitness areas, nature trails, cable car system as well as a multitude of stylish cafés, bars and restaurants and prestigious shopping for Altinoran’s residents.
Cornwall-based Proslope has won the prestigious 2014 Gold Award – Action Sports Concept at ISPO, the annual international exhibition of sports gear and fashion, held in Munich.
Proslope manufactures and installs artificial snowsports surfaces. To date, it has exported worldwide to countries including the United States, Canada, Japan and China.
Proslope was one of 2,565 international brands at the ISPO show last month, which attracted 80,000 visitors from 110 countries. Previous winners of ISPO awards include top international brands such as NIXON, GoPro, Burton Snowboards, Salomon and The North Face.
“With so many big international brands present, I'm thrilled that we walked away with the Gold Award,” comments Chris O’Connell, Director for Proslope. “I think the judges were impressed with the concept and innovation that’s gone into making Proslope work so well.”
Proslope came about in 2008 after several years of research and development and experimentation with what materials were already being used on ‘artificial’ ski slopes across the UK, and realising their advantages and disadvantages. Spotting an opportunity to address the shortcomings, and after many broken fingers and thumbs, Proslope was born.
The key aspects of its success is that it’s safe, long-lasting, easy to maintain and affordable enough to offer customers and investors a realistic return on investment. Proslope has been praised by many snowsports industry experts as the closest thing to real snow and more consistent. Eric Davies (BASI Trainer) from Salomon says: "It is the first time I've seen anyone properly carve on an artificial ski slope.
It is also the only artificial surface to work with all aspects of snowsports from alpine racing, freeskiing, Nordic and snowboarding, as well as tobogganing and snowtubing.
Through its sister company Snowtrax in Dorset, Proslope also operates the most commercially successful snowsports centre in the UK.
Becky Menday at Snowtrax
Ireland’s first all-weather public ski slope to open for several decades is scheduled to open in Cork later this year.
The Irish Department of Transport and Tourism is to invest €21,000 in the Glen Resource Centre, a community-based sports centre in Cork city, where the 30m long slope is expected to be completed next summer.
“The size of the slope will be 30 metres long by 4 metres wide and will cater for kids, young people and adults who are complete beginners. We will also cater for people with disabilities, due to the great adaptability of skiing as an activity. Activities such as snowboarding and snow tubing will also be introduced,” said a statement on the centre’s website.
Kendal Snowsports Club celebrated the upcoming Winter Olympics and Paralympics recently with 100 people taking a free try skiing or snowboarding session – most of them trying the sports for the first ever time, whilst at the same time raising money for the fight against Parkinson’s Disease.
The Slide2Sochi Roadshow was organised by Snowsport England and compliments their national participation campaign ‘Go Ski Go Board’, which is aimed at getting more people into and back into snowsports.
The event was buzzing with Olympic fever, with many participants eager to carry on skiing and snowboarding and support the Great Britain Ski and Snowboard teams on their journey to Sochi 2014 next February.
Bearsden Ski Club near Glasgow, which has been one of the most influential players in British snow sports since the early 1960s, is 50 years old this month.
Bearsden Ski Club was formed by a small band of enthusiasts and quickly grew to be recognised as one of the major influencers in Scottish and British skiing producing many world class skiers including Olympian Lesley Beck and current British number one downhill racer Douglas Crawford.
Having spent circa £1million in 2005/2006 the club, which has a membership of around 1,200, now provides one of the most advanced dry slope facilities in Britain incorporating a floodlit main Alpine slope, two nursery slopes and one of the UK's premier freestyle slopes for snowboarders and freeskiers.
The state of the art club house provides a warm, welcoming environment for snowsport enthusiasts, incorporating Café Igloo and two bars to relax in and enjoy the après ski culture to the full.
Briton Engineering Developments is delighted to have been chosen once again as the premier snowsports surface system of choice for one of the main attractions to the Metro Show by the exhibition organisers, VOS Media, Soul Sports and the Warren Smith Ski Academy for the Metro Ski & Snowboard Show in London.
The centre piece of this year's show was the 850m2 Snowflex® teaching slope. The slope was operated by Warren Smith and his Ski Academy staff. Warren and his staff used the nursery slope as the place to teach beginners to practise their first turns. The area also had a small jump and rail area so that instructors could show and teach skiers how to tackle features in a safe environment.
Scotland’s newest at Newmilns Snow & Sports Complex (NSASC) re-opened at the beggining of the month after a £1million redevelopment by Barr Construction.
The contractor was on site for seven months transforming the original Newmilns ski slope to create two brand new slopes to cater for beginners to more advanced skiers and snowboarders.
The slope uses Proslope matting, the same as that used at SnowTrax in Dorest, which has had some very good reviews.
The slopes measure in at 32 metres and 100 metres long and have two lengths of bristles to facilitate downhill and freestyle. A new table top jump area has also been created.
East Ayrshire councillor Alan Brown cut the ceremonial ribbon at the grand opening. First day visitors were treated to a fast-paced showcase from freestyle skiers and snowboarders and had the chance to participate in free taster lessons while youngsters had fun sliding down the slopes in tubing rings.
Paul Hollywood, project manager at Barr Construction said: “This project has been a tremendous success and a great challenge for the team at Barr Construction.
“We are confident the staff at NSASC will make a complete success of the new facilities and look forward to seeing many Scottish youngsters taking an active interest in snow sports with the addition of these top of the range slopes.”
NSASC was already a popular attraction in the local community, with many Ayrshire primary schools visiting of the complex before renovation began, and bookings have already been coming through thick and fast for the newly improved venue.
Bobby Pollock, chairman of NSASC said: “After spending a lot of time raising the necessary funds for this redevelopment, it is extremely heartening to see the ski slopes up and running and attracting such a strong interest.
“Barr Construction has worked tirelessly to meet our specialist requirements and the centre is now fully equipped to keep up with growing demand.
“It was great seeing everyone enjoying the slopes today and we are looking forward to providing more lessons for more people with our improved centre.”
Set to boost local interest in winter sports and shape the next generation of professional Scottish skiers and snowboarders, the centre received backing from The Scottish Government.
Sport Minister Shona Robison said: “I’m really looking forward to seeing the ski slope in action over the winter, an upgrade made possible in part by Scottish Government funding of £435,000 from the Rural Development Programme, as well as £78,411 via sportscotland’s Sports Facilities Fund.
“A key addition to the provision of quality winter sport environments, it will help promote and foster the development of snow sports in the South West of Scotland.
“And with several of our elite athletes currently training towards their next goal, the Winter Olympics and Paralympics in Sochi early next year, this facility will also help develop further performance opportunities and racing skills.”
Newmilns Snow and Sport Complex is a registered charity and social enterprise community organisation and raised funding for this renovation from a variety of organisations such as sportscotland, Landfill Communities Fund, The Robertson Trust, the Scottish Rural Development Programme, Social Investment Scotland and received a final grant from East Ayrshire Council.
Louise Martin CBE, Chair of sportscotland, said: “We were delighted to invest £78,411 to help Newmilns Snow and Sports Complex develop its facilities by creating a steeper and longer slope which will provide an improved training and racing environment.
“sportscotland is committed to investing in quality facilities as part of its drive towards developing a world-class sporting system at all levels and the improvements which have been made at Newmilns will also help to increase the opportunities for people throughout the area to become involved in sport and physical activity.”
Skiplex, the only place in the UK with continuous indoor revolving slopes, have launched their winter ski season 2013-4 with three venues for non-stop skiing in the UK.
Each slope at Skiplex, 4m wide and 9.5m long, can rotate up to speeds of 25mph with the gradient of the slope being adjusted to suit the ability of the skier or snowboarder, from beginner to expert.
Each session is led by a qualified instructor offering real time feedback and with a giant mirror at the base of the slope, the user can see their progress immediately. For advanced level skiers/boarders, this allows for fine tuning of technique whilst beginners gain a better understanding of what the instructor is requiring them to do.
Skiplex Chiswick, opened in 2011, situated in Dukes Meadows Golf and Tennis centre. Skiplex Reading, a larger venue just 10 minutes from the M4, offers two revolving slopes, viewing gallery and can host up to 12 skiers per hour.
The brand new Skiplex Basingstoke is part of a larger entertainment venue offering not only non-stop skiing, but Airkix Indoor Sky Diving, Brush Boarding and Sim Car Racing.
“Our sessions offer nonstop skiing and boarding without wasting time queuing for lifts, or being restricted by slope length,” said Chris Sanders, CEO of Skiplex, “Our instructor led sessions are great fun, personalised and tailored to your exact needs, with group sizes no bigger than three. Each unique Skiplex venue offers a chance to learn to ski, improve technique or just enjoy the slopes in a unique, safe and controlled venue.”
Skiplex is also supporting the ‘Go Ski Go Board’ campaign by Snowsports England. Skiers can take advantage of three, six week courses at Skiplex Reading and Skiplex Basingstoke starting 6th, 7th and 8th November.
The fifth of October 2013 was an auspicious day in British skiing as it marked 50 years since the first permanent dry ski slope in the country was installed, at Barton Hall, Torquay and it’s still being used today.
The first of more than 120 such slopes to open in Britain, of which around half remain, with many hundreds more subsequently opening (and continuing to open) around the world, the Torquay slope is operated by the Torquay Alpine Ski Club, now one of the oldest in the country.
Over the years dry slopes have made a huge contribution to the British love affair with winter sports, and hundreds of thousands, perhaps over a million British people have learnt to ski on these slopes over the last 50 years. Most of the current British ski team started out on Dry Slopes.
The idea for the Torquay slope was conceived by a group of local enthusiasts aided by the Central Council for Physical Recreation (CCPR), who persuaded Fred Pontin (later Sir Fred) to set up the slope at his Barton Hall holiday camp in Torquay.
There was a grand opening ceremony at the slope which included demonstration of skiing by members of the British Ski Team and European Ski Instructors from the Swiss Resort of Champery.
The Torquay Alpine Ski Club celebrated the anniversary with a dinner at the Grand Hotel, Torquay with Olympic and World Cup Ski Racer Chemmy Alcott and Olympic Ski Jumper “Eddie the Eagle” Edwards as guests of honour.
“The opening of the first permanent dry ski slope in 1963 is a major milestone in British Skiing and marks the first time that skiing became widely accessible,” said Tim Fawke, CEO of Snowsport England, “Since then hundreds of thousands of people have learnt to ski on these types of slope and it all started with Torquay slope and the club that operates it. The heart of our sport in the UK is based around clubs and it's great to know that this club is still going strong after 50 years."
The slope still uses the original design of matting (known as Dendix), which was designed in Great Britain and is manufactured in Chepstow, Wales.
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