Changing Face of Aberdare
The changing face of Aberdare will soon be visible to residents and
visitors alike, as the £7.7m regeneration project forges ahead.
Aberdare town centre has been home to many
notable poets, composers and was the launch
pad for the National Eisteddfod back in 1861.
The town has also been home to a strong
mining community and once led the way in the
Welsh printing era. Aberdare has seen many
changes over its long history and is set to see
more as it celebrates its heritage by bringing
its history to life through the regeneration of
this well loved town.
Plans for the project were unveiled to the public in
an exhibition in 2011 at St Elvan’s Church. The works
around the town will now see those plans become
Cllr Paul Cannon, Cabinet Member for Economic
Development and Safer Communities, said: “The
works will totally transform this historic town.
“We are so pleased to announce that work is
now well underway. The changes can already be
seen in the town and we look forward to seeing
even more over the coming months which I’m
sure will be very impressive.
“From the major improvements to Aberdare
town centre, we look forward to an increase in
confidence in the town and the number of
visitors. This would not only enhance local pride
in Aberdare, but also attract new businesses and
create more job opportunities for local people.
“We thank everyone for their co-operation and
patience over the recent weeks.
“This has been of great assistance to the project and
we look forward to your continued support during
2012. These changes will benefit shoppers, visitors
and local businesses, giving us a town centre to be
Aberdare Regeneration Improvement works programme launched
The £7.7m investment package for Aberdare
includes monies from the Welsh Government
through the European Regional Development
Fund, Heads of the Valleys Programme and
the Targeted Match Fund. The remainder of
the funding package is provided by Rhondda
Cynon Taf Council, the Heritage Lottery Fund,
Cadw and the private sector.
For further information on the Aberdare
Regeneration Scheme visit
www.myaberdare.com or call
01443 495150 or email
Welcome to the first
edition of My Aberdare
in which you can find
out all about your
Council’s exciting plans
for Aberdare, many of
which are already
starting to take shape
and are visible as you
look around the town.
We were delighted to secure a package of
regeneration funding of just under £8M for
Aberdare which will see the historic and cultural
appeal of the town restored. Traditionally known
as the Queen of the Valleys, Aberdare will once
again live up to that name through the
improvements to its street scene, public space
and landmark properties.
Rhondda Cynon Taf Council has been working
hard with its partners for some time now to
prepare what we believe is the right scheme for
Aberdare and we look forward to its completion.
It is clear that things are moving swiftly in the
right direction in Aberdare and we look forward
to having created a better town centre that both
celebrates its past and delivers a bright future.
Councillor Russell Roberts
Leader of Rhondda Cynon Taf
County Borough Council
Issue 1 February 2012
Works Update, Property Improvements
Nurturing Future Engineers, School Safety
Aberdare Park & Ride, What’s On
Contractors Alun Griffiths are making good progress to
the town centre improvement works scheme which are
heading for completion during winter 2012.
The town’s rich history and architecture will be brought to life
thanks to the use of high quality paving slabs, which are made from
Works are being phased into separate
areas around the town in order to
Proposals at Library Square have
been developed to provide an
attractive area that makes better use
of the public space. Works to
complete the paving, construct a
raised stage area and to provide
improved access to the front of the
library are ongoing.
Improvement works will be undertaken throughout Commercial
Street and Victoria Square through 2012. In addition to the use of
The My Aberdare website is available at
and provides detailed plans,
up-to-date information and news
about the improvement works
taking place in your town.
high quality paving, these works include
the transformation of the seating area
near Canon Street and includes specially
The project delivery team will continue
to work closely with local traders and
businesses to ensure deliveries and
access are maintained at all times and
the town centre continues with business
Aberdare Property Improvements
Improving and preserving both historic and
commercial buildings in the heart of Aberdare
is a priority for the town’s regeneration team as
work on local business properties continues.
Property owners in the town should now have
received guidance on how to apply for either
Townscape Heritage Initiative (THI) or Townscape
Enhancement Programme (TEP) funding
to improve commercial buildings.
Some of the changes can already be
seen as you walk around the town
centre, including building improvements
to local hairdresser, Anthony Charles,
which has been fully refurbished and
given a new lease of life thanks to the
Townscape Heritage Initiative (THI).
THI aims to protect and enhance
buildings within the town’s Conservation
Area, whilst also looking to bring empty
and derelict buildings back into use.
Over 80 properties within the Conservation
Area are eligible for funding from the
initiative, made possible thanks to investment
from Rhondda Cynon Taf Council, Heritage
Lottery Fund, the Welsh Government through
the European Regional Development Fund,
Heads of the Valleys Programme, Targeted
Match Funding and Cadw.
Works to properties in the area have been
sympathetic and respectful of the historic nature
of the buildings, with many features from their
Victorian heyday being restored as part of the
In addition to THI, TEP offers grant assistance of
up to 70% towards renovation and
improvement works to buildings in the
town that may not be eligible for THI
funding, ensuring that all businesses are
able to benefit from the regeneration
building enhancement programme.
To check your property’s eligibility please
contact the Regeneration and Planning
Division on 01443 495150 or
Town Centre Designers
Nurture Future Engineers
Aberdare High School pupils are
benefiting from the £7.7m regeneration
project thanks to Capita Symonds
Glamorgan Office, Treforest.
Capita Symonds Glamorgan Office are the
contracted designers of the town centre
project and are working with year 12 students
from Aberdare High School as part of the STEM
Cymru, Engineering Education Scheme Wales.
The aim of STEM Cymru is to encourage
students to take an interest in science,
technology, engineering and maths and to
consider engineering as a career path.
Back in October, the students chose the
design of the Aberdare Town Centre
Regeneration as their preferred project. The
six students have been busy carrying out
various research and development in to
highways design, landscape architecture and
the use and design of street furniture. Thanks
to the support of Capita Symonds and
graduate engineer Ayodeji Adepoju, the
students are learning the skills they need to
become the design engineers of the future.
The team have selected a number of areas
School Safety Tips from Ivor Goodsite!
Local children are being offered safety tips
in a bid to keep them safe and sound whilst
the town centre undergoes its changes.
Caradog Primary School was the first school
to get a special visit from Ivor Goodsite, who
is the Considerate Constructors mascot. The
within the town centre and considered how
these can be improved for the benefit of the
The students are developing all the research
and analytical skills they will need to become
the engineers of tomorrow as well as
communication, problem solving and team
Sebastien Boyesen of Sebastien Boyesen
Design and Capita Symonds director Ian
Walsh have also been on hand to offer expert
specialist advice. A software package which
will be instrumental in enabling the students
to produce their work has been provided
courtesy of Alun Griffiths (Contractors) Ltd.
The team is now preparing to submit a
written report of their findings and will be
delivering an oral presentation in March. The
overall submission will then be assessed by a
panel of expert engineers and academics.
Capita Symonds Glamorgan Office is an
innovative joint venture partnership between
Capita Symonds and Rhondda Cynon Taf,
Bridgend and Merthyr Tydfil County Borough
Councils, based in Treforest.
aim of the visit was to raise awareness of the
potential dangers of playing near to
construction sites and offer tips on how to
stay safe. The advice included taking notice of
contractors’ signs and staying clear of
restricted and fenced off areas.
Ivor was well received by the pupils and
presented some very serious messages in a
fun and interactive way, with the children
thoroughly enjoying his visit.
Ivor and Alun Griffiths (Contractors) Ltd will
be continuing their visits to primary schools
within the Aberdare area during 2012.
For more information and safety advice visit
Aberdare and the Cynon Valley has benefited
greatly thanks to the £10m highways
Almost 40 streets in the Cynon Valley and 15
around the town centre have either been
repaired, resurfaced or strengthened, improving
access for shoppers and residents alike.
The highly successful project has led to over
40,000 pot holes and patches being filled
across the County Borough, which is a 200%
increase on previous years. Over 90 miles of
carriageway - the equivalent distance of
travelling from Pontypridd to Tenby - has been
either resurfaced or strengthened.
County Borough Councillor Andrew Morgan,
Cabinet Member for Highways said:
"The Council and this administration has
recognised the concerns expressed by the
public at the damage caused from the last three
harsh winters and it is for that very reason we
are investing £10 million in our roads.
“The highway improvements have taken place
right across Rhondda Cynon Taf with every
ward of the County Borough benefiting,
including Aberdare and the Cynon Valley.”
For further information on the
Highways Investment Scheme call
01443 439700 or visit
If you would like to report a pot hole in
your area call 01443 494700 or visit
Aberdare Park and Ride
The £477k Park and Ride project will provide a modern parking facility for Aberdare
The project, which is funded by the Welsh Government’s Regional Transport Plan Grant, via Sewta
(South East Wales Transport Alliance) has been developed by the Council and forms part of the Sewta
regional approach to encouraging travel by rail.
Designed by Rhondda Cynon Taf Council and supported by Arriva Trains Wales and Network Rail, the
refurbishment and extension of the existing facility is being carried out by contractor BAM Nuttall Ltd.
These improvements form part of the Sewta initiative to promote and deliver improved public
transport across the region. The Sewta regional consortium, an alliance of the 10 south-east
Wales local authorities, has secured funding from Welsh Government’s Rail Forward Programme
for these works.
The project will include:-
• Installation of new drainage and culvert
protection to the large culvert that runs
underneath the site,
• Street lighting,
• New footways,
• New entrance/exit point,
• Carriageway surfacing,
• Increased car parking spaces from 30 to 130,
• Disabled parking facilities and Disabled access.
Work will commence late January and is anticipated to be open to the public by the Spring of 2012.
The existing car park will remain closed during the course of the works.
What’s on in Aberdare
Aberdare has got something for everyone, from beautiful parks and open spaces to shopping and
theatre shows. Check out the latest event going on in your Aberdare…..
Concert & Cakes
Wednesday 22 February 1.00pm & 3.00pm
Tickets cost £4.00
Cwmbach Male Voice Choir
St David’s Day Concert
Saturday 3 March 7.30pm.
Tickets from £8
The Acoustic Session in association with
Cynon Valley Acoustic Club
Tuesday 6 March 7.30pm
Tickets cost £3
Dare Valley Country Park
T^y Hafan 'Do you Dare?' Challenge
Sunday 25 March 2012, from 9:00am - 4:00pm,
cost £10 per person reg. fee plus sponsorship.
Aberdare Golf Club
Mayors Charity Golf Tournament
Friday 20th April
Cost £80 per pair – includes competition entry,
refreshments, 2 course meal and
Call 01443 424123 or email
Rhondda Cynon Taf Council is committed to encouraging visitors to Aberdare with a packed
diary of fantastic shows to look forward to throughout 2012, with plans for an exciting new
event in the pipe line.
As work on the Aberdare Town Centre Regeneration project continues, we
will keep you informed of each phase of work.
For further details, call the dedicated Helpline on 0845 5611194 or visit the
Regarding Town Centre Improvement Works - Liaison Officer on 0844 5611194
Regarding Property Improvements - Kerry Vicker, Regeneration & Planning
Project Officer on 01443 495150, email email@example.com
Final Rugby Tour
Aberdare RFC Under-14’s rugby team will
shortly head off on their final tour thanks
to a cash boost from Alun Griffiths
Alun Griffiths (Contractors) Ltd have
sponsored the club’s tour of Italy, which will
see the boys represent their home town,
flying the flag proudly for Aberdare.
The special tour will mark the under-14’s final
year together by arranging a memorable trip
to Italy, where the boys will play against a
number of teams in the north of the country
and hopefully take part in a national
The team have been together for the last
seven seasons and this will be their final tour
together before the majority of players move
on to take part in the Cynon Valley Schools
rugby programme. Following their
connections with the Cynon Valley, the
youngsters will later return to the youth
section and will play for the under 16s to