Fight to retain driving test centre in Pontypridd goes on
The fight to retain the driving test centre in Pontypridd is continuing after the DVSA made it clear that they are set to move it to Miskin.
Back in November it was confirmed that the DVSA wanted to move out of the current building in Pwllgwaun which they say needs a significant amount of repair work carried out. They plan to move the operation to the site of the HGV testing site in Miskin.
Driving instructors throughout the area are up in arms at the proposal as they say it will lead to a test route which will not provide the full range of driving experiences that are on offer along current routes.
Welsh Liberal Democrat Councillor Mike Powell says the centre should stay in the Pontypridd town area.
"If we lose this then it will be yet another facility gone from the town which has suffered enough already. Not only that but there will be little or no benefit to the people of Miskin as the traffic situation there is already horrendous.
"I have spoken to numerous instructors who are adamant that the current route provides a much safer learning experience. Learners are of course not allowed on the motorway, but the current position of the test centre allows them to access the A470 so they practice in motorway – like conditions."
In response to queries from the Welsh Liberal Democrats the DVSA Head of Corporate Office Colin Maddock stated in a letter:
"The building has structural issue of long standing that are evident and continuing despite underpinning work some years ago. The building is not yet presenting a risk to occupation but we are aware of the continuing need to keep this under review and cannot remain there in the long term."
""Our preferred option is to relocate the test centre to the goods vehicle testing station near Llantrisant. We are, however, willing to consider other locations in Pontypridd, providing they would be operationally suitable and cost neutral."
Rob Harper, Chair of the Driving Instructors Branch of Unite the Union said
"We will fight and oppose, at every opportunity this ill thought out move.
"The general public and ADI's use the test centre at a high rate. It is a perfectly profitable location. Should the test centre close, We believe that this will have a huge impact on learner drivers and our members. We would urge you to work with the local driving instructors to identify possible sites to relocate the test centre in the Pontypridd area."