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Leader expresses disappointment at Transport for Wales depot location

Posted on : 11 Jun 2018

Leader expresses disappointment at Transport for Wales depot location
Cllr Dave Poole, Leader of Caerphilly County Borough Council

Caerphilly’s Leader, Cllr Dave Poole has expressed his disappointment at the news that the South Wales Metro’s Transport for Wales depot will be located in Taffs Well, after putting forward a case for Rhymney to host the brand new facility.

The announcement, made earlier today (Monday 11th June) by the Cabinet Secretary for Economy and Transport Ken Skates, will see almost £100m invested by the Welsh Government in the new depot, which will house and service 36 of the new Metro vehicles.

Cllr Dave Poole said, “It’s extremely disappointing that despite a sound case, Rhymney has missed out on a real opportunity for its economy and prosperity, which is much needed in this area of the valleys. While I of course welcome the news that there is to be some investment in enhanced stabling facilities and an upgrade of Rhymney station to accommodate more and longer rolling stock, this decision is a real hammer-blow to the area; an area with high levels of unemployment and economic deprivation.

“Rhymney offers a location which is in close proximity to key strategic road networks, including the dualled Heads of the Valleys and the A470, and a community in real need of opportunities to prosper.

“I appreciate the additional cost in infrastructure that would arise from locating the depot facility in Rhymney, however the Cabinet Secretary’s portfolio covers not simply Transport but the Economy too  - which includes cross cutting measures to promote prosperity and the social economy; areas which the north of Caerphilly county borough is in real need of.

“Moving forward, I would urge the Cabinet Secretary to consider all other opportunities for Rhymney, such as a Metro electrification or infrastructure depot as part of the South Wales Metro scheme. This latest announcement also suggests the depot in Taffs Well will become the base for 400 train crew, 35 Metro vehicle maintenance staff and a control centre. Caerphilly county borough must benefit from this in some direct way”.

Cllr Dave Poole, together with local councillors, the Assembly Member and Member of Parliament will meet with Mr Skates in Rhymney next month to discuss areas of economic and social opportunity for the north of the county borough.

Cllr Poole continued, “I appreciate the Cabinet Secretary taking the time to meet us, as we feel so passionately that the Rhymney area has so much to offer, in terms of its key strategic links, its position at the heart of the valleys and a community who are keen to embrace opportunities which will allow them to prosper and grow”.

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