The centre is looking towards crowdfunding as it moves into stage two of its extension
The ambitious plan for an extension to the Dales Bike Centre at Swaledale in the Yorkshire Dales might be well on track for completion next year.
Right now though, the team at the centre are reaching out for a little extra help from its existing and hopeful future users to help make the scheme a little more viable.
Over the last ten years of its existence the Dales Bike Centre has seen a massive increase in its visitor numbers as Swaledale has become one of the best places in Yorkshire (and the North) to head out riding. However, as much as this has been well received the centre has found it difficult to cope with numbers, with the cafe, on-site accommodation and bike shop often stretched beyond capacity. Earlier this year the Yorkshire Dales National Park approved planning consent for a much extended and improved facility to cope with the demand.
Improved facilities for riders
The plans approved include a new, single storey cafe building designed to extend indoor seating capacity. The design has been chosen with a grass roof, glass front elevation and glass link to the current cafe building so it sympathetically blends into the local environment, “so nobody misses out on our beautiful views of Swaledale”. For the winter months the whole site will have an underfloor ground source heating system plus log burner to keep you warm. There will also be a complete refit of the existing kitchen to reduce the impact and waiting times the increased visitor numbers has brought.
Along with the new cafe there will also be an additional accommodation block featuring an extra five double/twin en-suite rooms and 3 family (or triple) ensuite rooms. The building will also include new larger secure and heated guest bike storage, a new sauna room plus a larger more efficient drying room & laundry. The existing but relatively small car park will also be moved and extended. In keeping with the traditional Yorkshire countryside 110 metres of dry stone wall will be used to surround the new car park.
According to Stu from the Dales Bike Centre, “Our crowdfund options all revolve around what we do best; looking after your bike, your belly and your bed and breakfast needs up here in Swaledale. Simply put, if 1500 of you pre-booked one room for one night we are there… But we thought we’d open up a number of options and get as many supporters involved at different buy in levels and benefits. Please check out the different options available and if something grabs you we’d be over the moon for your help.”
The only downside to any venture of this nature is cost, with the expansion expected to cost around £1.3 million. Whilst the project is going to go ahead regardless thanks to grants and bank loans, the Dales Bike Centre has launched a Crowdfunding campaign to help make the loan to equity ratio a little more tenable. looking to raise £150,000 the centre is offering a variety of options to buy into. Ranging from the chance to purchase a piece of the new car park wall, discounted cake and bike repair vouchers through to a discounted private hire of the entire centre, there should be something for everyone.