Welsh Government Commits £250,000 to Progress Tunnel Reopenings

The Welsh Government has allocated £250,000 to Rhondda Cynon Taf Council, to support the progression of plans to reopen the Rhondda and Abernant Tunnels.

The funding, announced last Friday (3rd August), has been awarded following the Council’s bid to the Welsh Government – which aims to support individual projects and packages of local schemes across Wales.

Commenting on the announcement County Borough Councillor Andrew Morgan, Leader of Rhondda Cynon Taf Council, said:  “I am pleased with the announcement from the Welsh Government, which allocates £250,000 to allow us to take forward the next stages of both the Rhondda and Abernant Tunnels in partnership with the other organisations involved.

“This package will be split to support the progression of both of these projects in undertaking a more detailed inspection and analysis of the work necessary to make the reopening of both tunnels a reality.

“This funding will allow us to carry out further reviews on the viability of both schemes and, providing the reports find that there are no major issues, will inform bids for more significant funding from a range of potential funders to be taken forward in the next financial year.

“The reopening of the two Tunnels holds huge potential for improving not only the Active Travel offer in Rhondda Cynon Taf, but also key leisure tourism opportunities that could act as a major boost for the wider economy in the Rhondda and Cynon valleys – by offering one of the most attractive and unique destinations of this kind in Europe and possibly beyond.

“Both projects are still in their infancy, of course, and there is still a considerable amount of work left to do before we are in sight of the finishing line. But this is a hugely significant step towards that point, and I am grateful to the Welsh Government for supporting the ambitions of both RCT and the neighbouring Local Authorities, as well as local groups like the Rhondda Tunnel Society, who have been the real catalysts in getting these projects off the ground.”