Plaid Cymru Leader Leanne Wood has urged people to get behind a new charity shop established to raise funds for the reopening of the Rhondda Tunnel.
The Rhondda AM was speaking after a mass bike ride with tunnel society members, police officers, members of the pro-bike charity Sustrans and local schoolchildren from the tunnel opening in Blaencwm to the charity shop in Treorci.
The route followed a proposed extension of the cycle network which would lead to the tunnel opening, making the subterranean route between the Rhondda Fawr and the Afan valleys more accessible. If reopened, the ride would be the second longest tunnel cycle route in the world.
Speaking after the ride, Ms Wood said: “The event was a milestone in the history of this ambitious and exciting project.
“Not only did it tie in with the official opening of what will hopefully be a regular stream of income for the Rhondda Tunnel society, but it also illustrated the potential and picturesque route leading to and from the tunnel portal.
“It was fantastic to see a real mix of ages and cycling abilities on the ride which just shows how cycling is something that can enjoyed by people of all ages.
“This project has so much potential in terms of making the Rhondda a unique destination for the growing number of cyclists. If it is down to the sheer hard work and enthusiasm of tunnel society members, I have no doubt about the project coming to fruition and being a success.
“I hope that the people of Treorci and beyond support the new shop with donations of goods and their custom. If the shop is a success, it could make a real difference to the project.”