Unemployed carry out maintenance at Afan

Afan is home to five world class trails – the Penhydd, the Wall, Skyline, White’s Level and W2

An army of unemployed people in south Wales is helping to keep mountain bikes on the move along the popular trails in Afan Forest Park.

Jobless men and women are carrying out essential maintenance work on the Forestry Commission Wales bike trails.

The volunteers are part of a joint project by FC Wales and Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council Skills and Training Unit to ensure attractions such as The Wall, Whites Level and the Skyline Trail remain fit for purpose.

As well as carrying out repairs to the mountain bike trails, they will also tend to other recreation facilities such as footpaths, car parks and signs to help keep the forest park looking its best.

FC Wales mountain bike ranger Carl Denham said: “These guys are doing a fantastic job of repairing worn out sections of these classic mountain bike routes.

“The trails get so much use by visitors that it’s important to keep up with maintenance. In particular, they have done a great job of resurfacing the Graveyard section of the Wall trail recently.”

Skills and Training Unit manager Annie Harding said: “This is an excellent opportunity for our learners to gain recognised land-based qualifications in a real working environment whilst making a huge contribution to the local community.

“We’re delighted to be working in partnership with Forestry Commission Wales on this project, which we hope will also benefit the prospects of those people involved.”


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