An Arriva Trains unit changing its destination board at DIngle Rd Station before continuing the climb to Penarth

An Arriva Trains unit changing its destination board at Dingle Rd Station before continuing the climb to Penarth

Four rail companies are  in contention for the single Welsh Government “not-for-profit”  franchise to operate the new Wales and Borders rail services in Wales – including those to and from Penarth.

The four firms have been named as:-

  • Arriva Trains Wales,
  • Abellio Rail Cymru,
  • KeolisAmey
  • MTR Corporation.

The new rail service is supposed to begin operating in 2018 along similar ‘not-for-profit’ lines to that of Transport for London.

A 30 year old British Leyland 142 Pacer train arrives in Penarth

A 30 year old British Leyland 142 Pacer train arrives in Penarth….late

The new operator will be expected to introduce new rolling stock – which would be a welcome innovation for Penarth Rail commuters currently travelling on trains which are  30 years old.

The Welsh Government’s policy is being attacked by the RMT rail union Mike Cash who says “All these bids will mean that the foreign-owned railways will be making profit out of Welsh services whilst the Welsh public sector is not even being allowed to bid – that is a ludicrous situation that we should be uniting to fight.”

Meanwhile the German-owned Arriva Trains Wales  – which currently operates Penarth rail services – has racked up one of the highest rates of complaints amongst rail operators  this year. Latest figures from the Office of Rail and Road (ORR) reveal that Arriva received 71 complaints per 100,000 passenger journeys.

This morning brought no respite for Penarth commuters  – as dozens of trains were cancelled or delayed as per normal  –  and led to the customary plethora of complaints from customers on Twitter:-


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  1. AK says:

    If you are travelling to London and only leave 10 mins for a connection, then you only have yourself to blame !

    Take an earlier train next time

    • Aahjnnot says:

      Throughout the day, National Rail’s journey planner always recommends a Penarth service that allows 11 minutes in Cardiff to transfer to the London train. The annoyed tweeter was following official advice, and could not be held to blame for the missed connection.

  2. Martin Coffee says:

    I was going to say exactly the same thing. I quite agree.

    No matter if I am travelling by train or road I always leave some slack in the system. If I do leave a 10 minute connection at Cardiff then I can afford to miss a connection further down the line.

    On Saturday I caught the first train from Cogan, which was a bus incidentally, with a 10 minute connection in Cardiff. However I had plenty of time in hand at Taunton. It’s only plain common sense.

  3. Martin Coffee says:

    In spite of the complaints I’m of the opinion that ATW is one of the better run ToCs. The thought of one of those named companies in particular taking over fills me with horror.

    I do find it abhorrent that the German Government is allowed to run our local railway but the Welsh Government is not!

  4. Fiona Whitfield says:

    Always get the train before to make sure

  5. Peter Church says:

    You could take the direct service from Dingle Road to Birmingham New Street if the train in the photo is to be believed?

  6. Duncan McKellar says:

    Tempting as it is to slag off Arriva you can’t really blame them for not buying new diesels with electrification in the offing.

  7. Mgg says:

    Who would run the stations then? Who would be responsible for cleaning etc ?

  8. johnm says:

    it’s the direct consequence of tory rail privatisations, they should never be forgiven!

Comments are closed.