South East Wales

Monmouthshire and Brecon Canal aqueduct repairs after vandalism

Aqueduct at Pontymoile, near Pontypool
Image caption The 200-year-old stone masonry was thrown into the river

A Grade II-listed aqueduct on the Monmouthshire and Brecon Canal has been repaired after vandals caused tens of thousands of pounds of damage.

Parts of the aqueduct's 200-year-old stone masonry was hurled onto the banks of a river at Pontymoile near Pontypool, Torfaen.

Glandŵr Cymru, the Canal and River Trust in Wales, has carried out £45,000 in repairs.

It has also restored 19th Century railings either side of the aqueduct.

Engineers have also repaired long-term damage caused by growing ivy and tree roots.

The work took more than four weeks and started just before Christmas.

'Specialist work'

David Viner, heritage advisor at Glandŵr Cymru, said: "We suspect some larrikins hurled sections of the masonry onto the banks below and quite a bit was carried off down the river.

"Because of the age of the aqueduct and the Grade II-listed status it was specialist work.

"The location, effectively suspended above the river, also meant that quite a lot of effort had to go into getting the engineers in a safe position to do the job.

"The aqueduct is a very important piece of Welsh waterway heritage, so it's great to see it back in top condition."

The Monmouthshire and Brecon Canal is a 35-mile long (56 km) canal that runs through the Brecon Beacons and dates back more than 200 years.

It was built between 1797 and 1812 to link Brecon with Newport and the Severn Estuary.

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