The University of Sunderland’s Snowsports society have been using the facilities at Silksworth for several years now helping them train for races and bring new and old members of the club together for weekly lessons on its floodlit 165m dry ski slope.
President of the Snowsports society, Salomé Boccara said about the slope: “Silksworth’s been really good to us actually. I think because we’re the smaller university we’ve managed to get to know the instructors on a more friendly basis.
“For having such a small reception facility there also pretty organised and are always quick to help us out, especially the new skiers and boarders.”
People who use the slope can either book private ski or snowboarding lessons or group lessons with up to 12 people for skiing and 8 in a snowboarding class. The university have used this system and been able to separate the groups into beginner, intermediate and advanced classes.
Boccara continued: “On the rare occasion where there’s been a miscommunication with lessons, Silksworth’s always managed to fit us in or sort something out for us, I think we have a pretty good relationship with the dry slope in Sunderland and I hope it stays that way.”
The slope also caters for parties where children and adults can go Snow Tubing. This is where people sit in inflatable ‘doughnuts’ and slide down the hill at fast speeds.
One member of staff at the slope said: “Most people who go to the slope are wanting to practice for winter skiing holidays. It’s the perfect place to train there as it’s like skiing on ice so when it comes to skiing on actual snow it’s a lot faster and easier as the snow is more responsive.”
Silksworth slope also offers a variety of classes and starter courses for young children as well as race-goers and sessions in a freestyle club.
More information about the times that the dry slope is open can be found at: http://www.sunderland.gov.uk/index.aspx?articleid=1915