New glass balustrade to replace wall at Swansea's 360 Beach and Watersports Centre
YOU wanted to see the sea — and see it you will!
Work to replace a section of stone wall with a glass balustrade along Swansea prom will start after Easter.
Council chiefs said customers at the 360 Beach and Watersports Centre, at St Helen's, liked the place, but as was pointed out in an Evening Post story — wanted to be able to see the sand and sea when sat there, rather than the wall.
This, in combination with a successful funding applic- ation, will result in a new 30-metre section of glass balustrade taking shape.
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The job should take about three weeks to complete, and safety fencing between the beach and the promenade will be installed during construction.
In addition, the car park entrance will be widened and a new store and retractable terrace cover — known as a patiola — added.
The 360 Beach and Watersports Centre is run by Bay Sports Ltd, a partnership between Bay Leisure Ltd and Swansea University.
It comprises a cafe, changing rooms and meeting area. The venue's marketing manager Ben Lucas said Easter will herald the start of a new beach and water activity programme after an understandably quiet-ish period on that front since opening last autumn.
Kayaking, stand-up paddling boarding, kite surfing and power kiting will be available in addition to volleyball, beach soccer and rugby and a game called atomic touch — described by Mr Lucas as cross between rugby and basketball.
The weather, as ever, will have a role to play.
The centre employs 15 full and part-time staff, and has a licence.
Mr Lucas said there are plans to hold events there.
"We will take on more 'casuals' there in the summer," he said.
The building was part of a £1.4 million scheme to make Swansea Bay a water sports centre of excellence, which also included a new facility at Knab Rock in Mumbles featuring toilets, showers, changing rooms, an office and a tourist information point.
Further money was spent at the St Helen's building on a toilet for people with profound disabilities.
The money for the glass balustrade is coming from Visit Wales's tourism investment support scheme.
Design briefs for the bay have come and gone, but a strong contender is a 70-metre boardwalk and viewing platform at the dunes, opposite the Aurora apartments car park at Swansea Marina. The council has submitted a planning application for the scheme, which is set out in a dunes management programme as part of a developer agreement between the authority and MAPA Spontex UK and Persimmon Homes.
Councillor Nick Bradley, cabinet member for regeneration, said the 360 Beach and Watersports Centre had been "a huge hit" since opening.
"Feedback from customers has been terrific but many have said the centre would be even better if visitors could take in views of the sea when sat inside or outside," he said.