AN award–winning leisure complex on a former pit site at Castleford is celebrating its 10th birthday.
The Xscape complex, built on the site of the former Glasshoughton Colliery off junction 32 of the M62, has attracted more than 35 million visitors since it was opened to the public in October 2003.
Xscape chiefs say 20 per cent of those visitors have travelled from outside Yorkshire or driven for at least an hour and 20 minutes to get there.
Xscape – which employs 800 local people – features the country’s biggest real snow slope, two rock climbing walls, indoor skate park, bowling alley, multiplex cinema, 17 bars and restaurants and a string of shops.
Helen McLoughlin, development director of Waystone, the company responsible for the Xscape project, said: “The success of Xscape has played an important role in the transformation of Waystone’s 300 acre Glasshoughton Development over the last decade helping to create a vibrant place to live work and play.
“It has helped to transform the former coal mining site making a significant contribution to the 3,800 jobs already created on the site and a real difference to local people.”
Normanton, Pontefract and Castleford MP Yvette Cooper, will be joining a day of birthday celebrations at the Xscape complex on Saturday.
Free entertainment on offer at the event from noon will include bike stunt artists, street magicians, comedy acts, flash mobs and more.
Awards won by Xscape over the last decade include Business of the Year 2006 in the Wakefield District Business Awards and Best Tourism Experience 2005 in the Yorkshire Tourist Board White Rose Awards.