THE man behind the scheme to build a massive £9 million dragon tower near Chirk is anxiously waiting to see if it has been given the blessing of the Welsh Assembly Government.

Meanwhile, he admits that he still has a “mountain to climb” to secure the necessary finance.

Although the plan was approved by Wrexham Council earlier this month, as it was a departure from the authority’s Local Plan it is possible it may be ‘called in’ for scrutiny by assembly officials.

The government has nine days left to call in the decision.

And Erbistock-based art dealer Simon Wingett, whose brainchild the project is, says he is nervously waiting to see if that happens.

He said: “I have no idea whether they will call it in or not but I sincerely hope they do not.

“Until the 21 days are up we are just sitting on the fence to see what will happen as far as starting the project is concerned.

“In the meantime we are doing our best to secure the necessary finance but it’s hard work in these austere times.

“Our target figure is still £9 million and we have countless meetings arranged with various banks.”

He added: “The appeal to every Welsh person at home or overseas is still ticking along quite nicely.

“But we still have a mountain to climb to secure all the money.”

The dragon will be built on Wrexham Council-owned land off the A5 at Chirk, right on the Wales/England border.

The 200ft tall structure will house a cultural centre and landscaped gardens.

It will also create almost 200 jobs and attract an extra £3.5million a year into Wrexham, according to Mr Wingett.

He has spent years putting together the project – known as Waking the Dragon – in memory of his late father, estate agent Frank Wingett, who died from cancer.