21 Mar 2023
Some of the oldest railway infrastructure in Wales is set for a complete transformation as part of the South Wales Metro.
The sheer scale of work needed on the on the Treherbert Line will mean the route between Pontypridd and Treherbert will be closed from 30 April 2023 until early 2024. No train services will operate during this time.
During the Treherbert Line transformation, Transport for Wales (TfW) will be offering 50% off the cost of travel for people living in the Rhondda. The offer will apply for journeys wholly on the line and journeys between stations on the line and locations through to Cardiff Central.
TfW will be providing further details on how people can take up this offer in the coming weeks.
During the eight months of work there will be a rail replacement bus service for customers, consisting of a core timetable of one bus every 30 minutes stopping at all stations, a dedicated school support plan for Treorchy Comprehensive School and morning and evening peak enhancement to reduce journey times and add capacity.
Current signalling system
The ‘Token Exchange Signalling System’ currently used on the Treherbert Line was first introduced in Britain in the mid-19th century and some of the equipment still in use today is believed to date back to the 1930s.
It will now be removed and replaced with a modern, brand-new signalling system for the entire line as part of the South Wales Metro project.
The work will also include the diversion of gas and water mains, new station platforms at Treherbert, Ynyswen and Dinas Rhondda, new footbridges at Ynyswen and Dinas Rhondda, and the installation of new track and Overhead Line Equipment throughout the line.
Further work includes new and refurbished toilets, waiting rooms, shelters and the installation or upgrade of help points, CCTV cameras, ticket machines and customer information screens.
The Deputy Minister for Climate Change with responsibility for Transport, Lee Waters said: “This is a massive investment that will make a huge difference to all passengers. There will inevitably be disruption and inconvenience in the short term but it will bring an enormous improvement. Please bear with us, it will be worth it.”
Karl Gilmore, Transport for Wales, Rail Infrastructure Director said: “This is yet another key milestone for the South Wales Metro project. This is the biggest upgrade to the ageing Core Valley Lines infrastructure to this scale since it was first built and there is a great deal of work to be carried out by our teams and partners.
“We know it’s going to be hugely inconvenient while the line is closed between April and early 2024, but transforming the dated railway line and bringing it right up-to-date with a modern, electrified line that will allow us to run more frequent and greener services, giving the people of the Rhondda a rail service they deserve.
“Rail replacement services will run throughout the Treherbert Line transformation and customers wanting further information should check online or using our app.”
During the first two weeks of the work on the Treherbert Line the lines to Aberdare and Merthyr Tydfil will also be closed for South Wales Metro transformation work.
Journey planning tools will be updated with the bus replacement information from 28 March.
The transformation of the Core Valley Lines for the Metro has been part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund through Welsh Government, and will enable faster, more frequent services between Cardiff and the heads of the valleys.
The investment in the Metro will significantly improve connectivity providing access to jobs, leisure and other opportunities for the people of Wales, through unifying rail, bus and active travel routes.