A lonely commuter waits hopefully this morning at a deserted Penarth Station . The booking desk was unmanned, the station doors were locked, the electronic displays were blank.  Transport for Wales – run by the Welsh Labour Government – had no idea why Penarth Station was as deserted and silent as a grave on the eve of Halloween. (Photo @GuyOD8)

Commuters arriving at the Labour-run Penarth railway station found the booking hall was closed and the electronic displays  – which are meant to tell the travelling public when the next train is due –  had been turned off.

Penarth railway station is now run – as of October 14th – by the Welsh Labour Government’s Transport for Wales (TfW) operation- but commuters said the place was more like a Halloween Ghost Train than a real railway station.

Mysteriously there was no booking clerk at the desk this morning to sell tickets. The doors were locked – and no one seemed to know why (Photo @GuyOD8)

There was no notice on the doors of the station explaining why the abandoned station was eerily deserted and why the train time displays failed to show when – if ever – the next train might come.

At the Transport for Wales HQ – run by the Welsh Labour Government – staff were totally perplexed and unable to give any reason for the failure other than to confirm that the station was indeed closed.

The  incident adds to the catalogue of cock-ups suffered by the new  railway franchise since it took over from Arriva Trains Wales .



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  1. Frank Evans says:

    A far cry from the shiny new metro plans that only appear as a computer graphic.
    Then again if they cant build the M4 relief road what hope for poor old penarth.
    Interesting piece and radio4 today about how people in Scotland are questioning devolution. Asking will the tax cuts be passed on or spent on SNP pet projects.
    Same is true in Wales. Don’t ask what the 550million will be used for. Labour vanity projects and back door bungs to failing companies is my guess.

    • Philip Rapier says:

      According to the website Queen Street Booking Office was closed yesterday (30 Oct0
      With frightening predictability the TFW Website had not been updated at 8 a.m.. today Halloween.
      Can’t handle the job then so give it to a franchisee that can

      • NewsNet says:

        PDN has been informed that the Welsh Labour Government’s Transport for Wales switchboard and offices are not staffed until after 09:00

  2. nppratt says:

    Re Biz watch Spar Lower Penarth There is a sign on the door this morning saying ‘closed till further notice’?

    Sent from my Samsung device

  3. Lesley says:

    This is laughable

  4. I had problems associated with a skip stop service at Cogan last week. It wasn’t shown as cancelled on the platform indicator nor online. It was only when it didn’t stop at the station that I became aware of the situation. At least ATW did update the platform indicators.

    TfW have also reprogrammed the barriers at Cardiff Central and they not operating correctly with some tickets.

    TfW need to pull their finger out as they seem to be a disaster at the moment.

  5. Phil Nedin says:

    I caught the train from Penarth to Cardiff this morning and being aware of the times of arrival didn’t need to look at the screen. The train was on time and I bought a ticket on the train so wasn’t delayed at the station. Perhaps the ticket manager was sick today and that is why he wasn’t there. To judge the performance of a system by a single event seems pretty small minded to me, however when political dogma drives articles like this it doesn’t surprise me!

    • Harry Parfitt says:

      Keep up Phil. Small mindedness and political dogma are the raison d’etre here.

      • David Day says:

        Everybody’s small-mindedness but one’s own of course. Funny how we discover ourselves to be capacious in mentality, well-informed about just about everything, almost infinitely virtuous and benevolent, but everyone else seems tiny-minded, mean and fatuous. What can be the cause of this, I wonder?

  6. David Day says:

    I don’t understand this. Has the assembly franchised rail services to itself or a subsidiary of itself (which is basically the same thing)? Surely not. For one thing, isn’t doing this impossible according to competitive tendering rules {EU]?

    • snoggerdog says:

      in all my years of(or in) academia (victoria primary,cogan academy for young gentlefolk) my ears were never gently massaged by the word ‘capacious’ thank you DAVID DAY for the aural massage x

    • Rupert D says:

      For future reference for all to note the National Assembly for Wales is equivalent to the Houses of Parliament, the Welsh Government (not WAG which does not exist since 2006) is the executive body that awarded the franchise to the new rail company.

  7. Big Davey says:

    Not sure why we need a manned ticket office in this modern age. Should be able to buy tickets with smart phones and shouldn’t need a paper one at all.

    May be people still expect a fat controller to see the trains off these days…

  8. Teresa Mitchell says:

    Had no problem when I caught the train from Cogan to Cardiff and back last Saturday….

Comments are closed.