North West Wales

Betws-y-Coed bridge jumpers are targeted again

CCTV is being used to deter people jumping off a bridge at Betws-y-Coed in Snowdonia.

People in the area say jumping off Pont-y-Pair into the river, 20ft below is a historical problem made worse due to the trend of posting videos on the internet.

Sunny weather at the weekend attracted more jumpers.

The community also hopes the CCTV will provide more information to help police catch culprits.

Community councillor Elizabeth Roberts said that while no-one has been seriously injured at the spot, she feels it is still dangerous to jump from the bridge.

"There were some jumping there on Sunday, but they were gone by the time the police arrived," she said.

"We won't stop it completely, but we can try to control it," she added.

It is a problem which had escalated in recent years, she said.

"It used to be the local lads having a go, then people started coming from outside and jumping in after they had been drinking.

'Dim view'

"Then a few years ago a father allowed a young child of about seven to jump in, and I thought, this is more serious now," she added.

There is also the problem of general anti-social behaviour in the bridge area, she added.

"It used to be just local lads doing it for a laugh, but now they come in minibuses and don't think anything of getting undressed in the middle of the street."

Bernard Owen from the the Betws-y-coed Tourism Association said the association take a "dim view" of the jumpers.

"The signs are there, but young people today seem to go for high adrenaline sports, but even so this is dangerous and people have died doing the same kind of thing in other parts of the country," he said.

The area has just been designated the status of 'gateway to Snowdonia' by the Welsh Assembly Government, and it was marketed as a place for families to visit, Mr Owen added.

"The pool (where they jump) is quite deep but if they misjudge the fall it could be treacherous.

"There are things which are equally as riveting to do around here, and I think jumping off the bridge is just mad," he added.

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