Residents in Llanrhaeadr-ym-Mochnant have demanded better signage, more communication and better traffic management near a popular tourist attraction after roads in the area became gridlocked last week.

Traffic came to a standstill outside homes near Pistyll Rhaeadr last week after a surge in visitor numbers to the popular beauty spot led to roads to the waterfall being blocked by parked cars.

A public meeting took place today (Friday), with representatives from Dyfed Powys Police, Llanrhaeadr Community Council, Powys County Council and Powys Highways Department in attendance.

Concerns were raised by people living along the lane leading to the waterfall, who demanded immediate action after residents were unable to leave their homes while the area was blocked with cars.

Residents also voiced concerns about blocked roads being a problem for emergency services trying to access the area.

Huw Williams, a member of the Llanrhaeadr Community Council, is concerned if people near the waterfall fall ill, it may not be accessible for emergency services.

“It’s a huge problem – I’ve never seen the village in such turmoil,” he said.

“The parking is atrocious here – god forbid anyone living near the waterfall falls ill.

“The roads and gates up towards the waterfall are blocked by vehicles, and you find the closer to the waterfall you are, the more frustrated people are.

“I do think there are solutions, but I think this meeting has been held two weeks too early. We should have been coming here today with solutions.

“The priorities are better access to the waterfall and keeping the road clear.”

First responder Mervin Carpenter insisted that immediate action is necessary.

He said: “I would disagree with the statement that we are here two weeks too early. These issues need sorting now rather than in two weeks’ time.

“Currently the parking and local access is not acceptable – those are the priorities.

“Another priority is the tourists – they have every right to visit this beautiful area, but it needs to be managed.”

Resident Emma Wilde suggested closing the waterfall until suitable resolutions could be made to stop roads from becoming blocked.

She said: “While there is the will for a solution, I am really concerned if nothing immediate can come out of this.

“In the short term, if we can’t do anything quite immediate to get the message out to tell people not to travel here in such numbers, to me I don’t see any other resolution other than to close it.”

Others suggested better signage to deter visitors from travelling to the waterfall when it is busy.

There were calls from some residents to provide better information online to inform potential visitors when the waterfall has reached capacity.

Dyfed Powys Police inspector Jonathan Rees Jones asked the waterfall’s café and campsite owner Phil Facey, who has spoken himself about the problems in recent weeks, to advertise the capacity of the waterfall for visitors.

He said: “The advertisement on the internet doesn’t explain the capacity or when you are full.

“So what you’re getting is people turning up to the area from further afield, and it is too late then to put plans in place.

“If it isn’t communicated to people that the waterfall is at capacity, then they will continue travelling here.”

A Facebook page has been set up to inform visitors to the waterfall when the area is too busy to welcome more traffic.