Pontypridd Signal Box

The disused railway signal box at Pontypridd is a Grade II listed building, and was once part of Pontypridd Junction. It played a part in the Hopkinstown Railway Disaster of 1911 (see also Wikipedia), when a stationary northbound coal train failed to comply with Rule 55 and ended up in collision with a southbound passenger train. Eleven people lost their lives.

Today, the signal box stands abandoned, unused. I’ve been unable to find any online reference for when the signal box closed. If you know, please leave a comment below.

Copyright (c) Stuart Herbert. Blog | Twitter | Facebook
Photography: Merthyr Road | Daily Desktop Wallpaper | 25×9 | Twitter.

If you’re reading this in the RSS feed, my original blog post also includes a Google map showing where this photo was taken. Unfortunately I haven’t managed to get the map to appear yet in the RSS feed, so for now you’ll have to click through to my blog if you want to see the map. Sorry.

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Steps Up To Radyr Station

These are the steps up to Platform 1 of Radyr Railway Station, as seen from the end of the bridge that crosses the River Taff to the immediate east to join with the Taff Trail.

Originally opened in 1863 as part of the Taff Vail Railway, Radyr Railway Station once sat at a busy railway junction and railway sidings (Radyr Yard). Today, the railway sidings are gone, and the station has been remodelled into three platforms serving trains travelling up from Cardiff Queen Street Railway Station via Cathays Railway Station on their way to Treherbert in the Rhondda, Aberdare in the Cynon Valley and Merthyr Tydfil in the Taff Valley (all via Pontypridd). The station is also the point where the railway south splits into two, with the City Line carrying passengers down via the longer Danescourt and Fairwater route into Cardiff Central.

The car park is popular on a weekend with cyclists looking for access to the Taff Trail; the section from here down to Cardiff Bay is very flat and very leisurely, and takes in beautiful areas such as Radyr Weir and Bute Park.

References

Copyright (c) Stuart Herbert. blog | twitter: (photography) (all) | facebook: (Merthyr Road project) (all).

If you’re reading this in the RSS feed, my original blog post also includes a Google map showing where this photo was taken. Unfortunately I haven’t managed to get the map to appear yet in the RSS feed, so for now you’ll have to click through to my blog if you want to see the map. Sorry.

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Rugby Post In Hailey Park

Hailey Park in Llandaff North nestles between the eastern bank of the River Taff and what would have been the western bank of the Glamorganshire Canal as the canal emerged from beside the tin works at Melingriffith. Back when Radyr Yard still existed (which today is the site of a new housing estate immediately south west of Radyr Railway Station), a railway embankment ran through the northern end of the park’s grounds, crossing the River Taff over a now-disused bridge to join what today we call the City Line.

In 1923, a Mr C. P. Hailey wrote to Cardiff Corporation offering the land to be transformed into a public park. His offer was for the northern section of the park, and subsequently a Mr Emile Andrews agreed to provide the land to the south of Mr Hailey’s to form a single park. Work began in 1925, and the park was opened on 3rd May, 1926, forming a great open area that only became even more important when Cardiff Corporation closed the Glamorganshire Canal and built the Gabalfa housing estate.

Today, the park is home to Llandaff North Rugby Club, and the Taff Trail cycle route snakes its way up from the south west to the north east corner of the park. A local community group works closely with the city council to improve the park, but unfortunately they keep hitting setbacks as local yobs disrupt and vandalise the park. The railway embankment that ran across the park is gone, and the line of trees that run down the south east corner edge of the park is the last reminder to mark the route that the canal once took.

References

Copyright (c) Stuart Herbert. blog | twitter: (photography) (all) | facebook: (Merthyr Road project) (all).

If you’re reading this in the RSS feed, my original blog post also includes a Google map showing where this photo was taken. Unfortunately I haven’t managed to get the map to appear yet in the RSS feed, so for now you’ll have to click through to my blog if you want to see the map. Sorry.

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Rugby Post In Hailey Park

Hailey Park in Llandaff North nestles between the eastern bank of the River Taff and what would have been the western bank of the Glamorganshire Canal as the canal emerged from beside the tin works at Melingriffith. Back when Radyr Yard still existed (which today is the site of a new housing estate immediately south west of Radyr Railway Station), a railway embankment ran through the northern end of the park’s grounds, crossing the River Taff over a now-disused bridge to join what today we call the City Line.

In 1923, a Mr C. P. Hailey wrote to Cardiff Corporation offering the land to be transformed into a public park. His offer was for the northern section of the park, and subsequently a Mr Emile Andrews agreed to provide the land to the south of Mr Hailey’s to form a single park. Work began in 1925, and the park was opened on 3rd May, 1926, forming a great open area that only became even more important when Cardiff Corporation closed the Glamorganshire Canal and built the Gabalfa housing estate.

Today, the park is home to Llandaff North Rugby Club, and the Taff Trail cycle route snakes its way up from the south west to the north east corner of the park. A local community group works closely with the city council to improve the park, but unfortunately they keep hitting setbacks as local yobs disrupt and vandalise the park. The railway embankment that ran across the park is gone, and the line of trees that run down the south east corner edge of the park is the last reminder to mark the route that the canal once took.

References

Copyright (c) Stuart Herbert. blog | twitter: (photography) (all) | facebook: (Merthyr Road project) (all).

If you’re reading this in the RSS feed, my original blog post also includes a Google map showing where this photo was taken. Unfortunately I haven’t managed to get the map to appear yet in the RSS feed, so for now you’ll have to click through to my blog if you want to see the map. Sorry.

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Silliness At Sardis Road

Silliness At Sardis Road

There are several stations along the old Taff Vale Railway that provide park and ride facilities – most notably at Trefforest and Taffs Well. Sadly, despite being one of the major towns along the route (arguably the most major other than Merthyr at one end and Cardiff at the other!), Pontypridd does not provide such a scheme.

What we have instead is the car park at Sardis Road. It’s a pay and display car park, but the all-day parking charges are pretty reasonable. And, on Sundays and Bank Holidays, car parking is free. There’s just a couple of problems with that.

First of all, the car park is only open from 7am to 7pm. If you’re a commuter who needs to be heading into Cardiff before 7am, you can’t park here. And if you’re a commuter who can’t be sure of making it back to rescue the car on time, you can park here, but you’ll have to come back the following day to rescue your car.

Secondly, as the sign says, the gates are locked at 7pm Monday to Saturday. So how exactly are you supposed to park for free on a Sunday if the gates are still locked …? Just to be certain that it wasn’t a mistake on the one sign, I popped down to the other sign and checked that too. They are consistent. The locked gates on a Sunday also means that the recycling bins hosted in the car park aren’t easily accessible if you’re too old or otherwise infirm to carry the waste from the road.

I’m sure that Rhondda Cynon Taff council must have good reasons for these restrictions, but they are very commuter unfriendly. Commuters needing to drive to the railway station are probably much better off driving to Trefforest or Taffs Well, especially if you’re likely to have to work late unexpectedly or if you need to commute on a Sunday.

Copyright (c) Stuart Herbert. blog | twitter: (photography) (all) | facebook: (Merthyr Road project) (all).

If you’re reading this in the RSS feed, my original blog post also includes a Google map showing where this photo was taken. Unfortunately I haven’t managed to get the map to appear yet in the RSS feed, so for now you’ll have to click through to my blog if you want to see the map. Sorry.

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Cathays Station Sign Behind Grilled Fence

In the foreground is the fencing on the western side of Cathays Railway Station. Across the tracks is the bold red ‘Cathays’ railway station sign.

It’s pleasing (to my eye at least) that although Arriva Trains Wales has painted the rest of the station in their hard-on-the-eye turquoise, they’ve left the pole of the station sign in the original Valley Lines green colour.

Copyright (c) Stuart Herbert. blog | twitter: (photography) (all) | facebook: (Merthyr Road project) (all).

If you’re reading this in the RSS feed, my original blog post also includes a Google map showing where this photo was taken. Unfortunately I haven’t managed to get the map to appear yet in the RSS feed, so for now you’ll have to click through to my blog if you want to see the map. Sorry.

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Alert! Treforest Estate

I couldn’t help but chuckle when I noticed this sign appear at Taffs Well railway station. Has there been a problem with train crews forgetting to stop at the Treforest Estate railway station, I wonder, or is it simply that we do have dragons in Wales after all that Treforest Estate is where they lie in wait to snack on passing trains?

Copyright (c) Stuart Herbert. blog | twitter: (photography) (all) | facebook: (Merthyr Road project) (all).

If you’re reading this in the RSS feed, my original blog post also includes a Google map showing where this photo was taken. Unfortunately I haven’t managed to get the map to appear yet in the RSS feed, so for now you’ll have to click through to my blog if you want to see the map. Sorry.

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Cathays Station

Opened in 1983, Cathays is (I believe) the newest station on the old Taff Vale Railway (opened in 1983) and the only station opened on the line since the demise of the coal mines that the TVR was built to service.

On the right of this shot is the hut holding the new ticket barriers that Arriva Train Wales installed. When the station is manned, the passageway beside the hut is gated closed, and passengers must pass through the hut to enter and exit the southward-side platform (aka the down platform).

Immediately to the north of here, on the east side of this surviving track, used to stand a large rail yard, complete with several impressive railway sheds. I don’t know when the yard’s track was ripped up, but the sheds were only demolished a few years ago.

Copyright (c) Stuart Herbert. blog | twitter: (photography) (all) | facebook: (Merthyr Road project) (all).

If you’re reading this in the RSS feed, my original blog post also includes a Google map showing where this photo was taken. Unfortunately I haven’t managed to get the map to appear yet in the RSS feed, so for now you’ll have to click through to my blog if you want to see the map. Sorry.

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Cathays Station Grill

I shot this to symbolise what has been a growing trend in the UK over the last few decades … publicly-owned facilities (in this case, Cathays Railway Station in Cardiff) being fenced off so that private operators (in this case, Arriva Trains Wales) can charge us taxpayers for access.

With such disenfranchisement, is it any wonder that no-one feels a sense of civic duty any more?

Copyright (c) Stuart Herbert. blog | twitter: (photography) (all) | facebook: (Merthyr Road project) (all).

If you’re reading this in the RSS feed, my original blog post also includes a Google map showing where this photo was taken. Unfortunately I haven’t managed to get the map to appear yet in the RSS feed, so for now you’ll have to click through to my blog if you want to see the map. Sorry.

Be the first to leave a comment »

Cathays Station Grill

I shot this to symbolise what has been a growing trend in the UK over the last few decades … publicly-owned facilities (in this case, Cathays Railway Station in Cardiff) being fenced off so that private operators (in this case, Arriva Trains Wales) can charge us taxpayers for access.

With such disenfranchisement, is it any wonder that no-one feels a sense of civic duty any more?

Copyright (c) Stuart Herbert. blog | twitter: (photography) (all) | facebook: (Merthyr Road project) (all).

If you’re reading this in the RSS feed, my original blog post also includes a Google map showing where this photo was taken. Unfortunately I haven’t managed to get the map to appear yet in the RSS feed, so for now you’ll have to click through to my blog if you want to see the map. Sorry.

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