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Conservatives slam Transport for Wales over ‘shocking images’ of Wales v All Blacks overcrowding

01 Nov 2021 3 minutes Read
Picture by Chrisbunting2. (CC BY-SA 4.0).

The Welsh Conservatives have criticised Transport for Wales after “shocking images” of overcrowding on trains before Wales played New Zealand on Saturday.

A video posted online showed fans on the Milford Haven to Cardiff train, standing shoulder to shoulder in the aisles, with some unmasked.

Welsh Conservative Shadow Minister for Transport, Natasha Asghar MS, said the footage showed that the train operator, which was nationalised by the Welsh Government last year, had packed people in “like sardines”.

“The people of Wales seem to be getting accustomed to travelling on crammed trains, especially on rugby days which we all know always attract large crowds,” Natasha Asghar said.

“Frankly, the lack of trains is just unacceptable. This fixture had been in the calendar for weeks and was not a surprise to anyone, yet Transport for Wales still failed to take action to make sure adequate trains were running.

“I have said on many occasions – inside and outside of the Senedd – that more trains are needed, especially now as life is slowly returning to normal and people are travelling again, but it’s clear bosses at Transport for Wales didn’t have their finger on the pulse over the weekend.

“It is vital that the Welsh Government-owned body steps up to the plate and ensures enough trains and carriages are running to cope with the high numbers of people for the rest of the autumn international matches.”

Leila Al-Badawi, who is a documentary film maker, had posted the short clip on Twitter and said the conditions could lead to a “super spreader event”.

Responding to the Conservatives’ comments, a spokesperson for Transport for Wales said that the weekend was the first large-scale event since the pandemic and nearly 75,000 people attended the match in Cardiff, with around 30,000 passengers using their train services.

“We ran as many services as possible, every serviceable carriage was in use, and where we could, we strengthened services on popular routes. Other operators serving Cardiff did the same. 

“TfW is delivering a transformational programme of improvements across the Wales and borders rail network that will see more than £800 million invested in new trains and infrastructure upgrades. The new trains will start to arrive on the network from next year, providing improved capacity and more frequent services.

“It’s a large-scale operation to transport tens of thousands of people on an event day and we’d like to thank our customers for their cooperation on the day.”

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GW Atkinson
GW Atkinson
26 days ago

Funny how politicians don’t give a sh1t when this happens with the footy. June Wales vs Albania rammed train down to Cardiff, including September vs Estonia and not one politician gave a fvck or even mentioned it.

Dai Rob
Dai Rob
26 days ago
Reply to  GW Atkinson

Such low crowds travelling to Cardiff for the fooitball, thats why!

Jack
Jack
26 days ago
Reply to  GW Atkinson

Wales football fans know how to wear a mask and keep a social distance. They would never behave in a drunken, disorderly manner like other fans.

j humphrys
j humphrys
25 days ago
Reply to  Jack

Well their reputation in Europe, as against Englands, is a rather good one.

Geoff Horton-Jones
Geoff Horton-Jones
26 days ago

No one can accuse TFW of failing to provide rolling stock for a single event of this nature
Have you no idea as to the cost of these units and what happens to themthe day after ??

The Tory track record on trains contains an 18 year period of no investment in the railways across dare I say it our united country

We want independence so we can use our taxes to pay for our expenditures

Kerry Davies
Kerry Davies
26 days ago

I do hope this means that all Welsh Tory MPs will demand the same per capita infrastructure spend that they lavish on the Home Counties.

Not holding breath for the additional £350m a year that means.

Gareth
Gareth
26 days ago

On top of Boris playing the “I want to save the planet” card, Natasha Asghar now complains of packed trains, when it was her party and Boris’s predecessor who cancelled electrification of Wales railways, and under funded our system for year after year. This is total hypocrisy from the two of them this last few days. If they were that concerned, they would have funded our rail system correctly, and carried out the manifesto promise made by them in 2015.
https://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/politics/what-tories-said-electrification-tidal-14830162

Barry Pandy
Barry Pandy
26 days ago

Funny how they use to defend You-May-Never-Arriva for doing exactly the same thing.

Philip Jones
Philip Jones
26 days ago

If TfW had a fair share of HS2 money we would be travelling in comparative luxury. The hypocrisy of Tories no longer surprises me. In an independent Cymru we could make our own decisions about transport.

Quornby
Quornby
26 days ago

If Wales had not had its HST2 differentials stolen by the English tories perhaps we could afford more carriages.

Stuart Cane
Stuart Cane
26 days ago

Maybe HS2 could go via the Valley Lines given that’s where Wales’s train money all went?

Steve Duggan
Steve Duggan
26 days ago

Perhaps if Welsh conservatives asked their masters in London to give the Senedd more money to improve the rail industry in Wales – we’d have more trains! The Senedd has only recently began to tackle decades of neglect in Wales.

Last edited 26 days ago by Steve Duggan
j humphrys
j humphrys
25 days ago
Reply to  Steve Duggan

They just get iffy money before elections.

Mr Williams
Mr Williams
25 days ago

The overcrowding is shocking, and I have experienced this situation several times myself. The Cardiff to Shrewsbury train is often like this. But I ask the Welsh Conservatives to demand more money from the UK government for our railways (which they consistently refuse to devolve) and they could easily remedy this bad situation – which many years of their under-investment created.

Last edited 25 days ago by Mr Williams
Dafydd
Dafydd
24 days ago

Does anyone remember the railways of the 70’s and early 80’s where locomotive hauled trains pulled upto 12 carriages, 4 as standard including a rear carriage for parcels, bikes etc.? Then came Thatcher, the cost cutting and privitisation that ended longer regional trains in favour of those noisy, smelly, uncomfortable, boneshaking buses on tracks! Well let’s go back to the locomotive hauled services (powered via electricity or hydrogen not diesel). With plenty of space for bikes and parcels to get more people off the roads and do our bit for the future generations of this country, that the politicians like… Read more »

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