Today marks the start of a consultation exercise on the redevelopment of Horseshoe Quarry in the Peak District.
Since the BMC acquired Horseshoe in 2004, considerable landscape improvements have been made, benefitting the flora and fauna and making the quarry more attractive, but the climbing has remained essentially the same other than some limited re-equipping in 2009.
BMC CEO Dave Turnbull explained the thinking behind the redevelopment: "Horseshoe is like it is due to human action rather than natural processes. Had the original owners stopped quarrying a month earlier or later the walls would be different to what we have today."
BMC president Scott Titt added: "Climbers have enjoyed the routes over the years, but we feel it is time to rejuvenate the quarry. If an indoor climbing wall hadn’t changed its routes for years there would be uproar and people would have gone elsewhere."
The BMC understands some climbers may be reluctant to see old routes go, especially those involved in first ascents, but we hope people will understand that a new lease of life is needed to enable young climbers to bag some new routes for themselves. We have secured Sports Council funding for the project and may extend the work at other sites in the future.
The consultation runs for three months before redevelopment starts. The work will take place next winter with Horseshoe re-opening in spring 2016.
The consultation focuses on:
Which routes should we keep?
It is hoped that some three-star routes can be retained, but are there some others worth keeping?
What new features should we add?
e.g. overhangs, slab routes and jamming cracks.
How should first ascents be allocated?
We want to encourage people to try new routing and avoid a free-for-all when the site re-opens.
How to have your say
Responses must be received by Tuesday 30 June.
For a consultation pack please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
UPDATE: 9 April 2015
Thanks to those of you who requested a consultation pack or posted a comment on the article or on the BMC’s Facebook. So many of you wanted see the addition of a roof, café and gear shop, but as with the redevelopment proposal, we think you might just have been April Fooling.
If you do have a serious issue you wish to discuss, then consider taking it to your local BMC area meeting
And for a taste of the work that has been done at Horseshoe since the BMC acquired the quarry read Flowers bloom at lucky Horseshoe
Watch: How to use Horseshoe Quarry on BMC TV
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