Contract awarded for next phase of Tylorstown landslip work
Written by Gavin on 14th November 2022
Rhondda Cynon Taf Council has appointed a contractor after receiving planning permission for the next major phase of work at the Tylorstown Landslip site – which covers remediation of the remaining tip on the hillside and reprofiling the upper tip.
The Planning and Development Committee recently considered the Council’s application on October 20, and agreed with officer recommendations to grant permission. The landslip on February 16, 2020, followed three storms in quick succession and was triggered by Storm Dennis, a one-in-200-year event. The landslip blocked the river valley, broke a foul sewer, covered a strategic water main with several metres of debris, and covered a shared cycle and footpath.
Work within a four-phase remediation plan has since progressed. Phase One included emergency drainage and vegetation clearance. Phases Two (scour repairs to the embankment) and Three (removal of material from the valley floor to receptor sites and reinstatement of paths) were completed in June 2021. Additional work to stabilise the slope followed in autumn 2021.
The application that was approved by the Planning and Development Committee on October 20 covers all activity in Phase Four. This includes:
- Removal of around 195,000m3 of remaining material within the Llanwonno Upper Tip – including drainage and landscaping works.
- Re-profiling the upper tip, with 35,000m3 of material used to ‘smooth out’ thelandscape – including drainage and landscaping works.
- Transportation of around 160,000m3 of material – along the disused tramway to be deposited at an identified receptor site, located just north of ‘Old Smokey’ which is contained within the wider Tylorstown Tip site.
- Widening of the existing tramway to create a haulage route to the receptor site – to enable access for trucks and other plant machinery.
- Re-profiling, drainage and landscaping of the receptor site.
The Council has now announced that, following its tender process for Phase Four using funding from Welsh Government, it has appointed Llantrisant-based company Prichard’s Contracting to carry out the works.
An officer report to the October 20 meeting said that Phase Four will last around six months, and is scheduled from spring to autumn in 2023. The land area is irregularly shaped – around 500 metres long and between 70 and 130 metres wide – and its finished profile will be a flattened hillslope. Additional permanent drainage works will be required to ensure it remains stable.
Officers noted during the meeting that further consent is needed from the Sustainable Drainage Approval Body (SAB) in relation to water management and drainage matters at the site, before the Phase Four works can proceed.
A construction compound will be set up north-west of the receptor site for the duration of the work, and it will be floodlit to ensure safety and security. No other lighting is proposed for the rest of the site. Working hours will be from 8am-6pm from Mondays to Fridays, and potentially 8am-1pm on Saturdays.
While the work will cause some disruption to the immediate community, it is important to note that the agreed arrangements will result in no tip material leaving the site. With the haulage route and receptor site contained to the hillside, the overall disruption to the highway network will be greatly reduced.
Councillor Andrew Morgan, Leader of Rhondda Cynon Taf Council and Cabinet Member for Infrastructure and Investment, said:
“I’m pleased the Council has received planning permission for Phase Four of work to rectify the landslip at Tylorstown, which occurred in Storm Dennis. Major progress has been made towards remediating the site, including removal of all slipped material from the valley floor in 2021. Less work has taken place on site this year with focus turned to preparing the planning submission for Phase Four.
“This activity included a Pre Application Consultation held in early 2022, so residents could find out more and have their say on what was being proposed for Phase Four. Officers hosted a further public exhibition at Rhondda Fach Sports Centre in May, before the formal planning submission was completed. Another important landmark this year was the Council establishing a dedicated Tip Safety Management Team within our frontline services.
“The recent decision by the Planning and Development Committee represents a major milestone for the overall remediation plan. It primarily covers removal of the remaining slipped material from the hillside, re-profiling of the upper tip, and transportation of material to previously-identified receptor sites. Work in Phase Four will enable the Council’s future vision for the area, with the site forming part of a wider community route between Maerdy and Pontygwaith.
“The main work within Phase Four will take place over six months in 2023, and will be preceded with preliminary work this winter. Prichard’s Contracting has been appointed to carry out the work, following the recent tender process. The Council will keep residents fully up-to-date as Phase Four progresses.”
The Tylorstown Landslip homepage on the Council’s website contains further information about the remediation plan, and will continue to be updated.