today is Oct 01, 2022

The Welsh seaside town of Llandudno is in the process of signing a twinning agreement with the Swiss ski resort of Champéry, part of the vast Portes du Soleil ski region which extends over the border to France, linking the slopes of ski areas like Avoriaz, Morzine, Chatel and Les Gets.

Although the twinning agreement, due to be completed on Swiss National Day,  August 1st, is not specifically a skiing one, it seems skiing is at its roots.

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Llandudno-born businessman Ray Pritchard, a former Welsh Masters ski champion who now runs Alpine Lifestyle Partners and who lives in Champéry suggested the twinning agreement. The Swiss resort has also hosted the Welsh Alpine Championships which attracts around 500 racers each year from 20 countries, for the last 15 years.

“Coinciding with the event, the alpine resort becomes Welsh for a week. Known locally as “Ya-Ski-Da”, skiers and their Swiss hosts get together is off-slope events and après-ski parties,” the Daily Post reports.

A memorandum of understanding was signed between the two towns at the end of the most recent Championships on April 1st.

Although the skiing at Champéry is a little more extensive than that at Llandudno, the dry ski slope on the Great Orme is one of the largest and longest established in Europe. It was recently fully renovated with an all new ski surface and is, unlike the skiing of the Portes du Soleil, open year round. The Daily Post reports that unspecified ‘Top Swiss skiers’ are due to visit in July for summer training on the dry slope in a move linked to the twinning agreement.