Plans for activity centre on the Monmouthshire and Brecon Canal abandoned
Saul Cook-Black, local democracy reporter
Plans for a new activity centre at the Pontymoile basin, on the Monmouthshire and Brecon Canal near Pontypool, have been abandoned due to rising costs.
The proposal, which was aimed at improving non-motor-powered activities on the canal, such as paddle boarding and canoeing, was part of the Monmouthshire and Brecon Canal Adventure Triangle project identified in 2019.
Planning permission for the hub and cafe was approved last year, despite more than 70 objections, with many raising concerns over the loss of the existing barge café business.
The proposal was put forward by the Canal and River Trust in conjunction with Torfaen and Caerphilly County Borough councils.
The three organisations were successful in bidding for funding from the Welsh European Funding Office to provide an activity hub at the site.
However, Torfaen council has decided not to proceed with the project following a confidential report which went before cabinet members earlier this week.
A council spokesman said: “Due to the risk of rising costs and time constraints, the council has with regret decided that it will not proceed with work to create an activity hub at the Pontymoile basin.
“The canal is a popular and valued destination, and the council remains committed to exploring opportunities to work with the Canal and River Trust to look for alternative projects to improve the canal for residents and visitors.”
In 2019, the Canal and River Trust secured more than £4 million of European Union funding for the Monmouthshire and Brecon Canal Adventure Triangle scheme, which included three projects centred around Pontymoile.
Included in that was the plan to develop an activities centre at Pontymoile with a view to attracting more visitors and locals to enjoy the canal and its surroundings.
The Pontymoile basin is the former junction of the Brecknock and Abergavenny Canal and the Monmouthshire Canal from Pontymoile to Newport.
Support our Nation today
For the price of a cup of coffee a month you can help us create an independent, not-for-profit, national news service for the people of Wales, by the people of Wales.