Friday, 25 September 2009

Spruce-up in pipeline for historic railway station

Historic Pontarddulais railway station is to be given a makeover to help attract more visitors into the town.

A group of young people and volunteers will soon be introducing raised flower beds on the platforms thanks to £5k funding from the Tidy Towns scheme- a Welsh Assembly initiative to help clean up communities.

An idea to boost Pontarddulais railway station was originally suggested by members of the local branch of Merched y Wawr after Tidy Towns invited project ideas from people across Swansea.

The proposal will now be realised in partnership with Swansea Council, Arriva Trains Wales, Pontarddulais Comprehensive School and the Pontarddulais Partnership.

The seven young people taking part are from year 11 at the comprehensive and they're working closely with teacher Sue Davies Lowe and youth worker Angela Payne to achieve a Level Two ASDAN Certificate of Personal Effectiveness- a qualification equivalent to GCSE grade B that requires at least 20 hours of community work.

Some of their preparation for the train station revamp included a trip along the Heart of Wales line to take in the route's beauty and get inspiration from other platforms.

Swansea Council's parks department is supporting the
Pontarddulais station project and is giving advice to the young people and volunteers about the planting process.

Viv Makin, of the
Pontarddulais Partnership, says the scheme is part of wider efforts to regenerate Pontarddulais and attract more people into the town.

Viv said: "It's marvellous that money from the Tidy Towns scheme will enable a group of enthusiastic young people and volunteers from
Pontarddulais to improve the appearance of their railway station.

"The scheme will not only enhance the appearance of the station to all passengers who travel along the
Heart of Wales line but it will also help to promote sustainable tourism.

"A lot of effort to regenerate
Pontarddulais is ongoing and we hope projects of this nature will encourage people to stop off in the town during their rail journeys and spend some time here.

"We're also hoping to link the railway station with footpaths in the area in the near future."

Heart of Wales line is a railway journey from Shrewsbury to Swansea that takes in some breathtaking scenery along the way.

Llandovery, Llandeilo and Knighton are among the other towns on the route.

Cllr Alan Robinson, Swansea Council's Cabinet Member for Community Regeneration, said: "Rural train journeys are a real treat and it's wonderful this money is being used to spruce up the station in

"The young people and volunteers should be congratulated for showing such a sense of pride in their hometown and I hope measures like this encourage more people than ever to pop into
Pontarddulais and discover what's available in the area."

Contact Sarah Jones on if you'd like to find out more about the Tidy Towns scheme and the funds that can be applied for.

Take a peek at for more information about the Heart of Wales railway line.


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