RCT Council still dragging its feet on reinstating Iron Tram Bridge at Robertstown Aberdare
The PROW footpath 35 at Roberstown has been closed since August 2018 because the council said the Iron Tram Bridge was in a bad state of repair this was well before Storm Dennis inflicted more damage to the bridge. The question is if the council had done the repairs prior to Storm Dennis perhaps the cost would not have been so much as it has turned out to be and the footpath would be open by now.
Where have the 3 local councillors been in almost 5 years and not asking for a temporary bridge when they know how dangerous it is to cross the A4059 at this point? But this is Cynon Valley and not Pontypridd; it transpires Pontypridd is where the council is most focused on spending its millions not the rest of RCT.
Important progress made towards the Iron Tram Bridge repairs
The Council has provided an update on the revised repair scheme for the Iron Tram Bridge near Robertstown. Progress has included the appointment of a contractor and the completion of a planning submission for the scheme.
The Iron Tram Bridge is a historic Scheduled Monument carrying a Public Right of Way over the River Cynon near the A4059 roundabout at Meirion Street. It was in a poor condition before receiving further damage in Storm Dennis. Its restoration is complex – considering the need to restore the bridge sympathetically to respect its cultural significance, working closely with Cadw.
The bridge was removed to start a repair scheme after the Scheduled Monument Consent was granted. However, upon closer inspection away from the site, a specialist contractor found the bridge’s condition to be worse than anticipated. It was announced last summer that a new repair scheme would be designed.
The Council has now announced that Walters Ltd has been appointed Principal Contractor for the revised scheme, which proposes installing several additional support beams to the bridge deck. It will aim to have minimal disruption to the historic cast iron aesthetics.
Further protection of the historic structure will be offered by the introduction of a collision beam which will be installed upstream of the structure, to protect against debris in the river during future storms.
The Planning and Development Committee now submits a planning application for future consideration. An artist’s impression of the bridge repairs (pictured) is included in the application. The Council has also made a submission for Scheduled Monument Consent for the revised scheme.
Leader of Rhondda Cynon Taf Council
Councillor Andrew Morgan OBE, Leader of Rhondda Cynon Taf Council and Cabinet Member for Infrastructure and Investment, said: “I’m pleased that progress has been made towards this important restoration scheme, after it was announced last summer that the planned repairs would need to be revised following a specialist inspection of the structure. A contractor is now appointed for the revised scheme, and the relevant applications for planning and Scheduled Monument consents are formally submitted by the Council.
“The Council is committed to delivering the repairs within its Storm Dennis Repairs Programme for 2023/24, and will keep residents fully up-to-date as the scheme reaches further key milestones. If the relevant consents are granted, the Council’s contractor could begin the main phase of work this summer.”