Maerdy Mountain Road Closure Causes Chaos in Blaenllechau

Blaenllechau


The essential landslip remediation works currently underway at Maerdy Mountain road were always going to cause an inconvenience for some drivers, but no one could have foreseen the absolute chaos the roadworks are causing in the small Rhondda village of Blaenllechau.

Ponty
Blaenllechau, known locally as Blaen, leads to Llanwonno, known locally as Llan. Drivers can use this road to Llanwonno as a route into the Cynon Valley and while Maerdy Mountain is closed, it can be used as an alternative route to Aberdare, cutting out the official diversion route via Pontypridd, known locally as Ponty.

Unwritten Rule
But the road to Llanowonno via Blanlleachau involves a very tricky and complex driving maneuver using a very special roundabout, so special that the road sign used to tell drivers how to use this roundabout doesn’t even get a mention in the The Highway Code.

The problem is outsiders have no idea how to use this quirky road feature and this is upsetting the locals, and other regular Llanwonno road users.

The road to Llanwonno from Blaenllechau involves a very acute turn, so acute in fact, that it once needed its own road sign, which read, “Very Acute Turn, Proceed on for 50 yards, reverse into side road and come back.” But the old sign post that once displayed these complex instructions was replaced in recent years with a simple roundabout sign.

The old sign (very acute turn). Photo: David Jones

Unfortunately, drivers who are new to Blaenllechau are ignoring the sign, and are trying to turn onto the Llanowonno road without driving past the turning and using the roundabout. They are simply performing, at best, a seven point turn to maneuver around the very acute turn.

Mary Fringe of Blaenllechau told My Rhondda News, “It’s absolutely ridiculous really, I saw a man in a van today doing a 11 point turn to try and get around the corner, he blocked the road and caused a major traffic jam, the Blaen bus was 4 minutes late.”

Mrs Fringe and other Blaenllechau locals took part in a peaceful protest today, which included a local folk band, a tiled mural, banners and placards urging motorists not to attempt the very acute turn and to proceed to the roundabout before continuing. She told us, “The protest appears to be working, only a handful of drivers have told us to feck off.”

The protest also involved several stalls, including bash the rat, a coconut shy and guess the name of the bear, the whole village turned out. Locals are determined to get the old sign reinstated.


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14 Comments on "Maerdy Mountain Road Closure Causes Chaos in Blaenllechau"

  1. Chris Butcher | July 13, 2017 at 10:01 pm | Reply

    I have to go all away around Blaen to get my van and trailer up Llan. The roundabout isn’t wide enough.

  2. Maybe we should have bash the rat at all roundabouts . They are needed to stave off the boredom of queuing to get out of the valley in the morning.

  3. Hi, if drivers use their HEADS and drive at the correct speed limit for the road conditions it will be no problem, but this is not the case, I use this road winter and summer and there is no problem, but the drivers who drives contract vehicles have no consideration for local road users, Please drive these vehivles with care , there are a lot of blind bends over the whole lenth of this road.PLEASE DRIVE CAREFULLY !!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Where is Blanlleachau

  5. Iv been on a lot worse road than llan .
    If you take your time it’s ok.Its a good job that llan road is open for people to get to work It’s needed anyway.

  6. If we had the new road all the way up to Maerdy we would not have had all these problems! But Just to put everyone in the picture we are the forgo-ton valley, the Rhonnda Fawr has all ways of getting out to where they want to travel; also the Cynon Valley. It’s about time we had a road to rely on. Come on Welsh government give us the road we need? Or maybe King Kong might appear in the forgo-ton valley!!!!

  7. When will this madness end?

  8. I used the Blaenllechau road to get to Tylorsown from Aberdare last Tuesday evening.

    It’s a very scenic road and an interesting drive, but I’d really recommend going via Pontypridd instead. The road over Llanwynno isn’t voloume friendly with narrow lanes and blind bends and crests.

    If the traffic is flowing, the route through Pontypridd adds only 5 minutes to the journey, but it’s much ‘easier’ behind the wheel.

  9. The council planners are a bunch of tossers they block the road to the Maerdy mountain off then decided to start road works in Cwmbach and this is on top of work already started in Pontypridd wat more can you ask of your local council? To start world war 33333333??? No please!!

  10. I’ve never used this road, and nor will I until this kerffufle is resolved!

  11. most locals just do a handbrake turn. (snitchy)(patrice palmer) rev on

  12. Even the fly tipping locals can manage it. Its the outsiders that are the problem. Scum

  13. I have been using the Llan road from Aberdare to get to Maerdy since the closure of Maerdy mountain road. I have had no problem with the roundabout in Blaenllechau as I thought it was quite clear what you had to do to exit the Llan road and vice versa. I agree with above comments regarding the road over Llan with all the blind bends and narrow road it is quite a hair raising drive especially with vans, taxi minibuses, big 4 wheel vehicles thinking they are the only vehicles on the road and driving way to fast on this road. I have seen Asda and Tesco delivery vans, Ambulance, Large Bread delivery lorry to name but a few using this road in the past weeks. I think the council should have made a ruling that this road was only suitable for cars and that large vehicles needed to use the Ponty route. Having said all of this when Maerdy mountain was open the number of HGVs struggling with the bends and than struggling to manoeuvre up\down Monk Street has been more than stupid. Its no wonder there was a land slip with these huge vehicles using the route. Rant over!

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