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Train operators reflect on first year in charge

By Rob Smith | Mid Wales | News | Published:

A year on from Transport for Wales taking over Wales' and the borders' train services, satisfaction levels with journeys have remained the same.

A Transport for Wales train at Shrewsbury Railway Station

The National Rail Passenger Survey found that 82 per cent of passengers surveyed were satisfied with their train journeys, the same as under Arriva Trains Wales the previous year.

However, customers reported being 49 per cent satisfied with how delays were dealt with, an increase of 15 on the previous year.

Transport for Wales is looking back on its first 12 months in charge of rail services, after taking over from Arriva Trains Wales as operators.

They say their first year has included a commitment to spend more than £600,00 a year on community rail partnerships – groups of stakeholders and communities in the areas they serve.

James Price, Transport for Wales CEO said: “It has been an exciting and challenging first year and we are proud to have started transforming the rail service for the people of Wales through delivering on our promises.

“We are implementing some ambitious programmes that will help us to improve the customer experience. Work has started on our railway stations; modernising them, making them safer and more accessible for local businesses and communities.

"We successfully re-introduced regular passenger services along the Halton Curve, providing 215 new services per week and connecting Wrexham with Liverpool by rail for the first time in 40 years.

“We have introduced additional trains to our network and our December timetable change will bring further increases in capacity across our busiest routes.

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Dedication

“Behind the scenes, there has been detailed planning and preparation work going on for the delivery of Metro services across Wales, the introduction of brand-new trains and the vision to create a fully integrated transport network.

“As well as our customers, I’d like to take this opportunity to thank all our staff for their dedication over the year and also thank the partners and businesses that we’ve worked with.”

Ken Skates, the Welsh Assembly's Minister for Economy and Transport, said: “One year into our ambitious journey of rail improvement I believe it is important to recognise the progress that has been made.

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"There have been the start of new services and new advanced fares and we will soon see extra capacity being added to some of our busiest lines. We’ve also outlined an ambitious £194m package of investment to improve every station in Wales.

“It’s clear that there are significant challenges and this journey will take time, but we have ambitious plans to transform transport across Wales to deliver a fully integrated network, with customers at the heart of everything.

"We have outlined a vision for a transformed railway across Wales – including the development of Metro systems – and Transport for Wales will continue to have an essential role to play in helping to deliver this.”

Rob Smith

By Rob Smith
Reporter

Senior reporter for the Shropshire Star based at Ketley in Telford.

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