A new sensory and memorial garden funded by Transport for Wales has opened in Ton Pentre providing support for local veterans.

The garden serves as an integral part of the Valley Veterans community hub, offering mental health support and community to veterans. Valley Veterans was founded over 10 years ago, initially as an informal support group for veterans dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), it now helps more than 140 active participants.

The project has been funded by TfW’s Community Habitat Creation programme with support from the Craidd Alliance and showcases TfW’s commitment to actively engaging with communities and helping them thrive.

Paul Bromell, CEO of Valley Veterans explained: “The work that TfW have done has been amazing. Everyone has come together to build the garden and the amount of support we’ve received has been great. We’ve trained people here to go out into the community and help others; making sure that whenever people need help, it’s here.”  

Danielle Hopkins, a Community Rail Ambassador at TfW said: “This has been an amazing opportunity for us as a rail operator to have a proactive impact in the community. We’re not just running transport services; we’re engaging with local communities and helping them to achieve their goals. The work that Valley Veterans does plays a vital role in the community, and we are thrilled to continue supporting them.”

Leyton Powell, TfW’s Safety, Sustainability and Risk Director, commented: “This project has given us the opportunity to promote sustainability while enabling people to live and work better and enjoy their spaces. It’s been a privilege to be involved in the project and it’s been lovely to be able to recognise all the work that’s been put into the garden and hear directly from the people who will benefit from it.”

The Craidd alliance is a partnership between Transport for Wales, Amey Infrastructure Wales, Alun Griffiths Ltd, Balfour Beatty and Siemens Rail delivering the Core Valley Lines Transformation project.