Locals frustrated over station reopening delay
Locals who rely on a train station in Merthyr Tydfil have expressed frustration over delays in it reopening following its closure almost three months ago.
Quakers Yard train station which serves the villages of Edwardsville, Quakers Yard, Treharris and Trelewis was closed in June whilst work was carried out to upgrade it as part of the South Wales Metro.
The station previously consisted of one single platform with a large metal shelter which offered little protection from the elements.
Earlier this year, TfW lodged an application with Merthyr Tydfil Council for a new footbridge, works to demolish, alter and extend the existing platform north of the railway line and the construction of a new platform south of the railway line.
Work was due to be completed this month but the station has so far failed to reopen with the reason being cited on TfW website as being “due to engineering works not being finished on time”.
Speculation in social media groups among local people suggests the station could reopen as late as next year.
A rail replacement bus service has been shuttling between Merthyr Vale and Abercynon since the closure of Quakers Yard station but passengers have complained the service is unreliable.
Dafydd Thomas lives in Aberfan and travels most days to Treharris for work. He said he “gave up” on the rail replacement bus service a few weeks ago and since then has been walking and cycling a few miles to and from work, sometimes in the dark and rain.
He said: “At first it wasn’t so bad, walking and cycling. But it’s been weeks of it now and the weather is getting worse.
“I’m tired before I even start my shift after walking for miles and the road between villages is very dark when I finish a shift late at night.
“TfW should provide an update on the station’s reopening because this has been one of many issues with the building of the South Wales Metro.
“People in Merthyr are constantly confused about the cancellations of trains and delays to engineering work. We can’t wait for all this to be over.”
Treharris Councillor, Gareth Richards said he has contacted TfW for an urgent update on when the station will reopen but has so far not been provided with any information.
In a statement Cllr Richards said: “I was advised by Transport for Wales in June that the closure of Quakers Yard Station would continue until the end of August.
“However, I have recently seen social media posts that there may be a further delay in Quakers Yard Station reopening and have requested an urgent update from Transport for Wales to ensure that local residents are fully aware of the situation and any inconvenience for them is minimised. I await this information.
“In relation to the shuttle bus, that operates between Edwardsville and Abercynon and Edwardsville and Merthyr Vale, I have received a few complaints about the size of the shuttle bus used and these complaints were taken up with Transport for Wales.”
Nation Cymru approached TfW for comment but they were unable to confirm a reopening date for the station.
A TfW spokesperson said: “Quaker’s Yard station remains closed to passengers while we complete major engineering work for the South Wales Metro, including the installation of a second platform, a new fully accessible footbridge and new signage, lighting and customer information screens.
“We are working extremely hard to ensure all necessary works are complete so the station can reopen as quickly as possible, this includes ensuring we have regulatory approval from our partners in the Office of Rail and Road.
“We would like to thank our customers for their patience and understanding during this time and apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.”
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