Author Topic: Access path to Ogof Clogwyn closed until 21 Sep  (Read 377 times)

Offline Allan

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Access path to Ogof Clogwyn closed until 21 Sep
« on: September 05, 2018, 09:11:36 pm »
Due to the replacment of overhead power lines by National Grid, a number of Public Rights of Way have been closed around the Heads of the Valleys area. This includes the approach path to Ogof Clogwyn, which is closed until 21 Sep.

Offline Stuart France

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Re: Access path to Ogof Clogwyn closed until 21 Sep
« Reply #1 on: September 08, 2018, 03:54:51 pm »
The Powers-That-Be have taken the opportunity to renew a lot of the electricity power lines in the Clydach Gorge while the A465 dual carriageway works are underway.  The contractor is Balfour Beatty and they seem to have been pretty reasonable about phasing the closing and re-opening of public footpaths as new cable is put into place.

The span across the valley itself is currently in progress and it lands at a big pylon on the south side a few hundred metres upstream of Ogof Clogwyn and much higher up.  The usual place people park to reach the cave is near a building called Tal-y-Sarn from which visitors walk down a good path through the Cwm Clydach National Nature Reserve to the cave.  This path and the cave entrance itself are nowhere near any power lines being renewed.

It's unfortunate that the contractor's barrier (which can be got around on the left side) is exactly at the end of the public road where it continues only as a path along the former railway line and, as I've said, it reaches a big pylon almost at the side of the railway line where the cables cross overhead.  Had they put their fencing even 5 metres further up the railway than they did, then the public would not have been intimidated from entering the Nature Reserve and reaching the cave.

I spoke to a Balfour Beatty employee who was clueless as the existence of the NNR, its path, and the caves.  But I did discover that their work here will be completed ahead of time, in the next few days, and the area reopened.

There is a meeting of the Local Area Forum of the National Park Authority on Thursday and I will question it as Balfour Beatty were given another 6 months approval by the LAF for further temporary footpath closures in the general area of the Clydach Gorge during the summer.

My photo shows the fence, the railway line onward route arrowed in yellow, and the NNR gate in green.

Stuart France, Access-Conservation Officer
Cambrian Caving Council