TWO-MONTH-LONG WAIT FOR ARRIVA TRAINS AT PENARTH’S DINGLE STATION

On November 23rd 2016 the add train  came and went - but there was no sign of Arriva's liong promised maintenance team - due to start work that day. No one has seen them since.

On November 23rd 2016 trains came and went – but there was no sign of Arriva’s long promised maintenance team – due to start work that day on the overgrown disused platform.

Arriva Trains Wales – the German-owned rail operator which runs the Valleys rail service  is used to having its  customers complain about trains being late, or cancelled without notice, but its customary day-to-day delays are –  it seems – as nothing compared with its performance at Penarth’s Dingle Road Station.

In a series of emails, Arriva had faithfully promised Robert Donaldson of the “Friends of Dingle Park” [ the volunteer environmental group that’s transformed nearby Dingle Park] –  that it would be dispatching a crew to clear away the rubbish, fly-tipping and undergrowth that’s accumulated at Dingle Station over the years- particularly on the now-disused platform on the opposite side of the track .

The unsightly and unkempt overgrown platform at Dingle Road Station contains fly-tipped rubbish

The unsightly and unkempt overgrown platform at Dingle Road Station contains fly-tipped rubbish

“Friends of Dingle Park” couldn’t undertake the platform clearing work themselves because only properly-qualified staff maintenance workers can carry out such operations on railway property . The sequence of events was as follows:-

On May 9th 2016 Mr Donaldson had contacted Arriva and asked them to tidy-up the Dingle Road station.  His request was received and it was confirmed that it would be passed to Arriva’s “community relations” department. There followed another email saying that “Your service request has been assigned to our Maintenance team to investigate further”

On October 3rd 2016 Arriva wrote to Mr Donaldson saying  “We’ve noticed that it has been a number of months since your enquiry has been updated. Unfortunately our maintenance teams have a higher than normal work load so occasionally requests can take longer than expected to be resolved. As it has been a while since we have heard from you, could you please confirm if this issue is still ongoing and requires our attention?”

On October 10th 2016 Mr Donaldson checked his emails, found the Arriva missive and rang them immediately to say the issue was indeed “still ongoing”.

On October  12th 2016 Arriva emailed Mr Donaldson to say Arriva’s “Maintenance Protection Coordinator” had  scheduled an inspection for Monday 17th October between 12pm and 4pm.

On October 18th 2016 Arriva informed Mr Donaldson that the Maintenance Protection Coordinator had scheduled the removal of the fly-tipped items on November 23rd 2016.

On November 23rd 2016 …. nobody from Arriva actually turned up.

November 23 2016 . A train approaches Dingle Station from Penarth Town. But there was no sign of the Arriva Maintenance team.

November 23 2016 . A train approaches Dingle Station from Penarth Town. But there was no sign of the Arriva Maintenance team which had been due to start work that day.

Not only did no one turn-up, but Mr Donaldson didn’t even get an email explaining why the crew had been delayed, or perhaps missed their train. The wait turned into hours, them days, then weeks. …And even  today there’s still  no sign of the missing Arriva crew commencing the long promised work at Dingle Road .

In desperation Mr Donaldson has now contacted Penarth Town Council to see if it can use its influence to persuade Arriva and its Teutonic parent company, Deutsch Bahn, to fulfill its promises.

PDN Note:  Arriva Trains Wales is part of the Arriva group, which is owned by Deutsche Bahn.  Today the Welsh Affairs Committee in the House of Commons has said  people were tired of “old and cramped” trains provided by Arriva Trains Wales. The Welsh Government is due to decide who runs the next Wales and Borders franchise from 2018

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4 Responses to TWO-MONTH-LONG WAIT FOR ARRIVA TRAINS AT PENARTH’S DINGLE STATION

  1. If people think the ATW services are “old and cramped” I can refer them to services in other parts of the country which are far more overcrowded and dirty.
    ATW are only responsible for the platform itself and when I was there a few weeks ago it seemed fine, certainly no worse than Cogan station.
    Network Rail are responsible for the everywhere else including the disused platform and I would be interested to see copies of Donaldson’s correspondence with them.
    In spite of what they say publicly the UK government is responsible for the allocation of rolling stock which is where the criticism should be directed.
    Resolution of the problem has been delayed because the UK government has cancelled electrification projects which means far fewer diesel trains will be available to supplement the ATW fleet.

  2. snoggerdog says:

    unkempt,overgrown,unsightly,so whats underneath?a disused tarmac platform,how picturesque!tell that to the sparrows who call it home & fairly safe from the feral moggys who dont like brambles,if anywhere needs tidying up its glebe st its a right old garden by the sea! and and and i havnt finished yet,i think you will find that the assembly has the last say in anything arriva does.

  3. Paul says:

    “As it has been a while since we have heard from you, could you please confirm if this issue is still ongoing and requires our attention?”
    Friends of Dingle Park”, aren’t allowed to touch it, yet they ask is the issue still ongoing?

    Er yes it is, it doesn’t stop growing, cos an official shuffles a few papers about…

  4. Ian Perry says:

    Perhaps we could have some facts as to why we have the ageing Pacer trains in Wales. The facts are that this is not down to Arriva Trains Wales.

    The same UK politicians that have failed us on the railways, failed the entire population of the EU in their representation of the hooligans and louts we as a nation are famous for, above those of us who use facts and figures, are likely to be the same politicians that will continue to fail us in the coming years.

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