Your committee member Michael Sullivan consider Arriva Trains Wales has lost the will to live, following his summer experience on the Cambrian and Crewe lines as related here.

Friday July 6th: I and a friend took the 0753 from Hereford to Shrewsbury. That was ok and on time. We were taking the 0930 from Shrewsbury to Aberystwyth. This train originates at Birmingham and another of my friends joined at Wolverhampton. There were only two carriages which were grossly overcrowded. Although many detrained at Shrewsbury there were a goodly number waiting to board to go to the seaside – the result was that some had to stand for much of the two hour journey.

On arrival at Aberystwyth station we were told that the 1730 return train would not be running, but instead there would be a train at 1830 which would go only as far as Machynlleth – fat lot of good that would be! Therefore we had to take the 1530 which again was only two carriages. In addition there was no air conditioning. The conductor was excellent and apologised but there was nothing she could do. Fortunately this particular conveyance was of even older stock than the usual ones so had a couple of opening windows.

Saturday July 7th: Another tale of woe today on wretched ATW. I took the 0853 from Hereford for Crewe. Again only two carriages and it was not long before there was standing room only as we progressed up the line. Initially I had a lady sitting next to me travelling to Shrewsbury. She detailed her experiences with the West Midlands Trains where on three occasions the train from Birmingham was terminated at Hereford and passengers abandoned to wait for the next train. So the malaise is not confined to ATW. That lady departed at Shrewsbury and another lady came to sit by me. She had come from Aberystwyth that morning and her early train had been cancelled, apparently with a fault with the train.

What can be done about Arriva? I would think nothing at this stage as they will be finishing in October and obviously saving costs and running everything down. But we need to ensure that the new company and Transport for Wales do not repeat their mistakes and incompetence and if that means involving our MPs and the Department for Transport so be it’

Michael Sullivan: July 2018