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Why is Rhondda Cynon Taf Council allowing flooding to block the Public Right of Way and National Cycle Route, route 478

AberdareOnline has written many times about the blocked Public Right of Way (PROW)

 

Formally Footpath 160 Commences at the northern end of Violet Street Aberaman at a kissing gate but excludes the section of the path across Aberdare By-pass. The path continues on the north side of the Aberdare By-pass at a second kissing gate and proceeds in a north-easterly direction and crosses the River Cynon by a concrete footbridge and proceeds across meadows by hardcore and ash footpath, before passing under railway and continuing to its termination at its junction with footpath No 24 Cwmbach on the Community boundary south of ‘fair View’.  

 

Footpath 160 a PROW is the responsibility of Rhondda Cynon Taf Council and the Group Director Prosperity, Development & Frontline Services Nigel Wheeler who roll is also responsible for Highways. Most local people who frequently use this PROW would be aware of the constant flooding over many years resulting in the PROW being inaccessible for months at a time. The council's answer to this remains to put their faith in two submergible water pumps, a water pump is one that is capable of being immersed in water and functioning while submerged in water, is this working on Footpath 160 the answer is no. So we ask the Group Director Prosperity, Development & Frontline Services who has been in his position in charge of highways for many years why has he not resolved the ongoing problem residents have had to put up with for years?

 

Would this ongoing problem still be a problem if it were in Mountain Ash or Pontypridd? There are two Aberdare east councillors Labour Cllr. Michael Forey has been a councillor for over 21 years first elected: 4 May 1995 and Labour Cllr. Steven A Bradwick has been in that position for over 8 years first elected 1 May 2008 both labour councillors and its labour who are responsible for running RCTC. Councillors not interested in the ongoing problems by knowing people don’t want change but are happy to stick with them? Then there is the MS another labour politician who is on social media and should be aware of the ongoing problem and the MP another labour politician again who is on social media, all are aware of the voting structure in Cynon Valley over the years all safe seats. May residents who use the PROW reside in Cwmbach is another safe labour seat labour has Cllr. Jeffery Elliott made any representations about the flooding? If the above have made representations about the flooding why is it not resolved?

 

None of the above will upset the labour administration and so it goes on year in year out and the local residents just put up with it. The flooding in the Ynys has been reported many times on social media have any of the above made a comment? Footpath 160 a PROW is also part of the National Cycle Route, route 478 links the Taff Trail to the south and the Brecon Beacons and Heads of Valleys cycle route. AberdareOnline have written to Sustrans Cymru about the council allowing continual blocking of the route 478 by floodwater Sustrans Cymru reply was,

 

“We are aware of a number of issues on the NCN that we would like to see resolved, including this one as a long-standing problem.  Sustrans has limited ability to take direct action given that this is land that is owned by the Local Authority.  We continue to make representations to the Authority to resolve the issue.”

 

AberdareOnline has requested under the freedom of information Act a copy of Sustrans Cymru “representations to the Authority’ about the flooding over the last 5 years.

 

 

Twitter post-Duane Jones April 4 Just had a walk through the canal but surprise the bridge at the bottom of the Ynys is flooded AGAIN NO ACCESS Absolutely ridiculous

Twitter post-April 4 John Williams I had the same problem

 

Twitter post-March 27 Welshlass 2 Can you keep a few bob for this too at Ynys canal right of way ..still no fixed

 

Twitter post March 25 AberdareOnline to @RCTCouncil @sustrans

 We RAISE it 1 metre out of the river's flood zone! Said

@NetworkRailWAL NR raised a bridge out of a flood zone.

 

Is this a pertinent situation for the Ynys and PROW and National Cycle Network?

http://aberdareonline.co.uk/news/rhondda-cynon-taff/flooding-public-right-way-national-cycle-network-ynys-aberdare no reply from RCTC or Sustrans

 

Twitter post 23 March Welshlass2 to Andrew Morgan What about clearing up this mess at Ynys canal again today -expensive new electric rail covers being used by locals to step on. no response

 

Twitter post 23 March Welshlass2 to RCTC yet again Ynys access from canal flooded after several dry weeks ...impassible right of way for locals some of the new assumed to be expensive  rail covers being put there by locals to step on .no pump action at all just disgusting water all around the  area

 

Twitter post 26 February Welshlass2 to RCTC Access to canal at Cwmbach from Ynys impassible again today ..come on RCT say something ? Is the plan to create another canal... a reply 1 March Thanks for your message.

This has been reported and the reference number is 101005964922

 

Twitter post Me Myself I January 30 Good to know that we got @RCTCouncil looking after our public rights of way and cycle network...otherwise they'd be in a hell of a state, impassable even.. (A photograph with the tweet PROW flooded)

 

Twitter post Me Myself I 3 February @SustransCymru

 Is this how you see the future of cycling in @RCTCouncil

 #Cwmbach village close to  @AberdareOnline

 #cycling #Aberdare

 

Twitter post Me Myself I 18 February. This photo was taken today, so its still an ongoing issue. Can we please have an update as to what is to be done...short term and long term please?

A response from RCTC 19 February. Thanks for your message.

This has been reported and the reference number is 101005953576.

Please DM your full name and preferred contact number if you would like a response regarding this issue.

 

There are many more posts on social media all describing the ongoing problem that needs a solution the submergible water pump system doesn’t work all the time and it must be costing the taxpayer thousands the council did have a company on contract to maintain the pumps that more money for a system is not fit for purpose. In 2014 the council said, “The removal of silt in the canal basin has been scheduled to take place during the Autumn 2014 and this will be in consultation with the Council Ecologist & Natural Resources Wales to ensure that best environmental practices are followed.” Some of silt in the canal basin was removed but the equipment the council used was not up to the job. Another response AberdareOnline had in 2014 from the council.

“It must also be noted that this low level area is subject to a great deal of groundwater flooding and during periods of heavy rain it will possibly take the pumps a number of hours to reduce the water level, and even then it has limited capacity to remove excessive amounts of rainfall in a short period of time. Nevertheless, the pump / sump is on a monthly inspection schedule and clean out program and during forecasts for excessive heavy rain all attempts will be made to checked for blockages, etc. beforehand.

 

The system has not worked successfully well before 2014 a long-term solution is needed so what is the council's next move to resolve the problem?