Checkpoint Penarth: Cyclists normally put up with the frequent closures of the bascule bridges – but yesterday some lost their rag when they heard the locks could not be traversed for most of yesterday – because of essential maintenance (PDN file photo)

It’s emerged that there were angry scenes at Cardiff Bay Barrage yesterday as cyclists  – and some pedestrians – allegedly berated  safety officials who were stationed to stop members of the public attempting to cross the three lock bridges between Penarth and Cardiff .

Cardiff Harbour Authority had already extensively publicised the scheduled closure of the locks and had issued statements to a variety of media to say that it would not be possible to cross the barrage for 2 days [ yesterday (Tuesday March 13) and today )] whilst essential maintenance work was in progress.

Clearly however, a number of cyclists and barrage-walkers had not got the message about the planned closure.

One of the Cardiff Harbour Authority safety marshalls who had to bear the brunt of heated complaints from cyclists and walkers yesterday (Photo John Clark)

They vented their combined anger on Cardiff Harbour employees whose responsibility it was to ensure members of the public were safe and didn’t attempt to cross whilst major maintenance works were in progress .

Cardiff Harbour Authority has confirmed that there had been “several incidents where a number of people were unhappy and had been unaware of the closure  – and unhappy they had to change their plans ” . Some had  “vented their frustrations”.

The Authority says that personnel acting as stewards on barrage were “used to getting a little bit of abuse” when the barrage had to be closed in such situations  – and were accustomed to such “altercations”.

A huge steel component is craned into position in yesterday’s vital Cardiff Bay Barrage Locks maintenance work (Photo John Clark)

The scheduled work had already been deferred from last week and the revised closure dates had been extensively re-advertised.

In the event all the work was  completed well within one working day and the barrage was open as per normal for all users today (Wednesday March 14th).

The huge mobile crane helped get two days’ work completed on the barrage within just one (Photo John Clark)

The work involved maintenance of the bascule bridges and extensive repairs and replacement of the huge and heavy lock-gates and their neoprene seals

One source said that cyclists or walkers heading from Penarth to Cardiff didn’t want to back and climb-up the fearsomely-steep  Dock Hill, whilst cyclists and walkers from Cardiff to Penarth who had pedalled almost all the way to Penarth objected to having to turn around and go back to Cardiff .

With the Barrage Locks out of bounds most of yesterday there were only two choices left – go the long way around or take a boat – like the excursion vessel “Daffodil” (Photo John Clark)

Some would-be commuters decided to hop aboard local boats like Daffodil and Lady Helen – but it was uneconomical to provide such a service throughout the day for a relatively small number of passengers.

The original closure had originally been arranged for last week but had to be rescheduled for this week. Public information signs had been displayed days in advance at each end of the barrage and information had also been given out  on social media channels and on the Cardiff Council website .

About NewsNet

Penarth Daily News email address Penarth Daily News is an independent free on-line fair and balanced news service published by NewsNet Ltd covering the town of Penarth in the Vale of Glamorgan, Wales, UK. All our news items are based on the information we receive or discover at the time of publication and are published on the basis that they are accurate to the best of our knowledge and belief at that time. Comments posted on the site by commentators reflect their opinions and are not necessarily shared, endorsed or supported by Penarth Daily News.
This entry was posted in Penarth Daily News. Bookmark the permalink.


  1. June Hurley says:

    There was enough media coverage.

    Why do some people think it all about them .So easy cyclists take the cycle path across tour the bay.

    • Philip Rapier says:

      Cyclists acting selfishly! Showing a complete disregard for both Essential Maintenance Work and Public Safety on a shared pathway. Caring nothing for the Safety of Mariners! No surprise to users of the Railway Path is it? I think Sustrans the Pushbike Propaganda Peddlers should be told!

  2. Local walker says:

    There is an alternative way. Cycle through the marina and cross by the Pont Y Werin bridge go along the river bank behind the Ice rink , or in front of Morrison’s and cross over the river bridge and into Cardiff. On a bike it’s not that far. Probably quicker than spending time berating staff. Walking is a bit longer, although it is a lovely walk

  3. cogan nomen says:

    Pont y werin ?

  4. Peter Church says:

    Another example of the selfish me me me attitude of cyclists!

    • Ralph says:

      You, you, you….. forgot to mention pedestrians

      • Peter Church says:

        Why are cyclists like the Russians?
        They both act solely in their own interests and then wonder why they nobody likes them

  5. Vic says:

    I often wonder why they don’t allow people to cross over the lock gates whilst the road is up. I suppose it’s an elf & safety issue. Used to do it donkey’s years ago without a problem.

    • David Wilton says:

      I often think that. Swansea Marina, you can cross the lock gates, Penarth used to be fine, but for some reason, you can’t cross the perfectly fine gates on the far side when the bridge is up.

  6. The Tax payer says:

    Please don’t get me started on cyclists. Most but not all need to pay for what they get and not rely on non cyclists to pay for things they want/demand in life 👹

    • Ralph says:

      Don’ get me started on motorists who, most, but not all, think everyone should pay for the pollution they cause.

    • Penarthur says:

      The vast majority of cyclists also have cars and pay Road tax but often choose to avoid contributing to traffic and pollution by cycling to work and other places.

      This is a good thing for everyone.

  7. whatsoccurin says:

    Love the barrage and staff are always helpful but this closure was a bit confusing-stayed away one day last week, only to find it stayed open. Some notices said two day closure this week (Tues,Wed) and some said just Tuesday-in the end it was a 2 day closure but the work finished early!. There are regular closures for maintenance and this is the first time there has been any confusion as far as I am aware.

    • AK says:

      There was no confusion.
      Closure was postponed for a week, which was well publicised.
      Work was finished in one day instead of two, and the early opening was publicised.
      No confusion.

  8. John64 says:

    Have some sympathy for the cyclists please! I don’t think it would matter how well the barrage closure was advertised I doubt whether cyclists could have read it. In my experience a lot of cyclists who descend Dock Hill cannot read: at least they can’t see the roundabout sign at the island and do not keep left.

  9. I’m appalled to read that employees were“used to getting a little bit of abuse”. The barrage is not a right of way and is essentially private property. Those who abuse these employees should be permanently banned from using the barrage.

    Let them cycle or walk the long way round.

    These cycle people have got way above themselves and need to be taken down a few pegs.

  10. Penarth realist1 says:

    Are you from dusseldorf?

  11. snoggerdog says:

    whats a dropped curb for? its for motorists to have a smooth transition up onto the pavement to park their huge foreign tanks on, stopping me from riding my bike on the pavement ! when it comes down to it we are all a selfish lot who obey the laws we like,disobey the ones we dont .most human beings are self righteous & smug . but any one who reads this i am not meaning YOU of course.

Comments are closed.