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Official re-opening of Snaefell Summit 2 July 2011

Hundreds of people travelled to the highest point of the Isle of Man to witness the official re-opening of the Snaefell Summit Hotel today (Saturday 2 July 2011).

Minister Hon David Cretney MHK re-opens the Summit Hotel in The Department of Community, Culture and Leisure is half way through a £3million track replacement scheme on the five mile long Snaefell Mountain Railway and has invested £230,000 in a complete refurbishment of the Snaefell Summit facilities.

Hon David Cretney MHK, Minister for Community, Culture and Leisure, Minister for Community Culture and Leisure, unveiled a plaque to mark the occasion in the presence of ‘Queen Victoria’.

He told assembled dignitaries:

‘The Manx Electric and Snaefell Mountain Railways emerged from the crisis following the Dumbell’s Bank collapse in 1900 as premier tourist attractions with the MER carrying half a million passengers in the month of August alone.
‘Your Majesty, it is a matter of fact that the ingenuity of a number of your loyal citizens has provided a great deal of interest for persons visiting our Island in large numbers over many years. With the decline of mass numbers in tourism, your Isle of Man Government had the foresight to acquire the two tramways in 1957.
‘The Bungalow and Summit were originally both hotels and the Bungalow survived until 1958. They are both key to the line’s operation with the current Bungalow Station opening in 2002. Sadly the Summit remained neglected until now when I am delighted the full potential of this key attraction is now being fully utilised.
‘In the last two years we are again finding the potential the mountain offers both tourists and residents beyond seeing Your Majesty’s five kingdoms with our recently Victorian Curiosities at Laxey Stationintroduced twice weekly Sunset Dinners and events such as Pie In the Sky.
‘In the 2010 season we are delighted to confirm our traffic figures were up 15% to more than 41,300. This year with our opening at Easter we are already a staggering 5,000 passengers ahead of this time last year.’

A Victorian Extravaganza is being staged over the weekend to celebrate the official re-opening of the Snaefell Summit facilities.

Laxey Station is the focal point of the celebrations with Red Coat soldiers on parade, a Victorian photographer, Punch and Judy shows from midday plus displays of vintage vehicles and fair rides. An additional attraction is the Travelling Museum of Curiosities and Wonderment. There is a Victorian costume competition for adults and children at 3.15pm. Anyone entering into the festivities by dressing appropriately will be given half price travel on the trams.

The Extravaganza extends to Ramsey with a vintage double decker bus providing shuttle runs between Ramsey tram station and the Grove, Milntown House and the Transport Museum at Jurby. Onward bus travel is free with a valid tram ticket.

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