Plaid Cymru promise trans-Wales railway in manifesto launch

A Transport for Wales train. Picture by Jeremy Segrott (CC BY 2.0)

Plaid Cymru have announced that they would invest in the building of railways across Wales if they were in power, as they launch their manifesto today.

The manifesto promises the creation of a trans-Wales railway and a Cross-rail for the Valleys.

The manifesto also includes a commitment to building a super metro in the south-east of Wales, a new Metro system for Swansea Bay and the western valleys.

There would also be a metro for the north east of Wales, and reopened rail services in the Amman, Tawe, Neath, and Dulais valleys, they say.

They would also electrify all mainline rail lines by 2030 and the Valleys railways, followed by the North Wales Coast railway.

As well as railways the manifesto also promises to construct tidal lagoons in Swansea Bay, Cardiff, and Colwyn Bay, an offshore windfarm off Ynys Môn, and a barrage on the River Usk, and 20,000 green social houses. 

Launching his party’s manifesto for the general election later today, Plaid Cymru leader Adam Price AM will say that “Wales can be the cradle of a Green Jobs Revolution”.

This revolution would make Wales 100% self-sustainable in renewable energy by 2030, and create tens of thousands of high-skilled jobs in Wales over the next ten years, he said.

 

‘Future’

In his speech at the launch event later this morning, Mr Price will say that despite the nation’s role in the first industrial revolution, Wales has been left in a “rut of intergenerational poverty”.

“Wales was the cradle of the first industrial revolution, but the sad truth known to all of us who live in Wales is that our country hasn’t reaped the benefits of our own wealth,” Adam Price he will say.

“At the bottom of the economic league tables, with homelessness rising, and 200,000 of our children living in poverty, Wales can’t afford to take another punt on the Westminster parties in the hope they might take our country seriously this time.

“We know that Wales has enormous potential – we are rich in natural resources, and our people are talented and skilled. Just as we were the first time, we can be the cradle of another revolution: a Green Jobs Revolution, creating tens of thousands of green collar jobs, and seriously tackling the urgent climate emergency we face.

“History teaches us that no matter whether we put our trust in Labour or the Tories, Wales is always an afterthought for Westminster. The manifesto we’re launching today is not just a manifesto for this general election – it’s a manifesto for our nation’s future. We can be an innovating, pioneering, caring, and sustainable country. It’s time to back Wales, to back Wales’ party – back Plaid Cymru.”

In its manifesto, Plaid Cymru is calling on the UK Government to allocate an additional 1% of GDP to invest in green infrastructure over the next decade, to allow Wales to spend an additional £15 billion on green jobs, transport, and energy.

Plaid Cymru is also calling on the Treasury to raise Wales’ borrowing limit to £5 billion, bringing the total investment in green collar jobs and tackling the climate emergency to £20 billion.

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Eric Hall
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Eric Hall

This trans-rail railway – will it be a reopened Rhyl – Denbigh – Corwen line, a reopened South Wales – Moat lane line and a new connection through the mountains between Newtown and Corwen with a reopening of the line from Corwen to Wrexham? Because anything else “trans-Wales” is a total absurdity. I can’t think of any other country in the world where to go from one part to another, you have to pass through another country. That will be fun in the new post-independence world. And before anyone starts to moan about the cost of building this new line,… Read more »

Hethin Bennett
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Hethin Bennett

HS2 is about capacity north wales coast trains will use it

Penderyn
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Penderyn

HS2 is not in Wales…I want a Wales connecting line

Dave Brooker
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Dave Brooker

Surely the reason there’s no trans Wales line is down to geography, not nasty English people?

Huw Davies
Guest
Huw Davies

Geography may have presented serious problems in the 18th, 19th and even in the 20th century but seriously our obstacles are generally minor compared to those confronted by massive works undertaken world wide. I suspect that the biggest obstacle to restoring and extending the rail network would be our archaic planning rules which are now a feeding ground for consultants and solicitors.

Sibrydionmawr
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Sibrydionmawr

The major land communications in Wales have been on an East-West (or vice versa) axis since Roman times, facilitating imperial needs. The 18th and early 19th century expansion of the road network in Wales more or less overlaid previous Roman efforts, but this time in order to serve the Irish mails,. Any mention of England at this period automatically included Wales, (which was indeed the purpose of the Laws in Wales Acts) and then as now, Wales was peripheral. Perhaps, if the Welsh had been as unruly as the Scottish were in the 18th century we might have a far… Read more »

Huw Davies
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Huw Davies

I don’t disagree with what you say, just that the old “geography” objection is pretty feeble given what is available in terms of civil engineering in the 21st century. That said, engineering skill has to be combined with clarity of vision otherwise we will get “roads and rail to nowhere”. I certainly don’t rule out the current reality of North Wales linking with Cheshire and beyond, and a similar connectivity in the South but it needs to be as partners with the adjacent English region not the dependency relationship that currently exists. If this continues then assimilation is likely to… Read more »

Hethin Bennett
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Hethin Bennett

Assimilation has always been complete on both side of your ”border”

Penderyn
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Penderyn

“assimilation”…………..sorry love…still Welsh speakers here…speaking the old British language……must really annoy a norman french fetishist like you

Hethin Bennett
Guest
Hethin Bennett

There is no demand for a north/south railway I would be happy to debate the issue with anyone with knowledge on the subject

Penderyn
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Penderyn

a sample of one in your marvellous survey?

Andy Woody
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Andy Woody

We already had trans Wales lines.the reason we don’t anymore is because of a disgraceful lack of investment by Westminster.

Ann Owen
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Ann Owen

Dave Brooker – no-one’s saying the transport deficit in Wales is down to “nasty English people”!!! It’s due to Westminster governments over decades giving their attention and focus, and thus investment, to the parts that strike them as central to their UK – Wales being peripheral and not a priority. We need to take the initiative in Wales to get the modern and green transport networks and economic investment our country needs if our people and families are to prosper, and we get the socially just society that Wales could be. Thank you Adam Price and Plaid cymru for your… Read more »

Lloyd Orange
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Lloyd Orange

It is connected to geography, providing the best routes for England to access resources in Wales and Ireland

Rhosddu
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Rhosddu

Lloyd, geography is not (and probably never was) a problem; you are right, though, as regards the purpose of eas-west road and rail links. They’re also used nowadays to facilitate tourism and the integration of north-east and south-east Wales with urban conurbations over the border.

John Young
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John Young

It’s amazing to think people cite geography as being the reason why it can’t/shouldn’t happen. You must all have seen the programmes showing the Crossrail project and the underground difficulties associated with that enterprise. Crossrail 1 will be £20 billion by the time it’s completed and good old Boris argued a year or two ago that Crossrail 2 (North to South) should be built, which if he wins the election will surely happen. And the current cost of that is £30 billion. So if that goes ahead that will mean £50 billion being spent on public transport in a City… Read more »

Penderyn
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Penderyn

“nasty english people”…..stop being daft….the English establishment has been uncaring and ignored Wales…….. doesnt mean an average English grandmother in Stoke on Trent is to blame

Plain citizen
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Plain citizen

Geography makes it tricky and incredibly expensive to build new lines but reopening old ones may be a lot more economically feasible. Tidal power is ridiculously expensive and if you wanted to bankrupt Wales that and other so called ‘green’ schemes are a good way to do it.
If we want to make Wales wealthy it’s good education, transport, housing (which means using the green belt), and low taxes that will do it. Tax free allowance should increase to £16,000 pa with cuts in employees and employers NI.

Huw Davies
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Huw Davies

Your ideas on a low tax regime will be of interest but only when Wales has a viable business/commercial base which will yield the other business related taxes. Initially I just don’t see how anyone, including the wider UK , can envisage slashing tax rates, hiking up tax free allowances and cutting the taxes on businesses unless the wild promises made in this election campaign are junked wholesale.

Penderyn
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Penderyn

Norway seems to have a working rail line with huge mountains that make Wales seem like rolling hillocks

Jonathon Gammond
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Jonathon Gammond

It makes sense to reopen the lines between Swansea, Carmarthen, Aberystwyth and onto the north to ensure good north-south links in the west. As for passing through Herefordshire and Shropshire to travel north and south in the east, it seems bizarre to wish to disparage this easy way of travelling north and south (and it would be cheap to improve this line) in favour of vastly more expensive dream routes that stay within Wales. HS2 would be look like a cake walk compared to any new north-south line inside Wales. Meanwhile it is good to hear that some politicians are… Read more »

Dave Brooker
Guest
Dave Brooker

I suppose the one real problem with reopening the Carmarthen to Aberystwyth line is the fact it’s single track and that the communities it served are so small

Cian Ciaran
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Huw Davies
Guest
Huw Davies

Good idea though it could take a long time to deliver an attractive service proposition. Free travel is great but if it takes all day then a lot of people will use their private vehicle on grounds of urgency. Therefore planning for regional “metro” type service is essential so that people can realistically hop on a bus/tram/train, get to a hospital appointment and get home in the same day ! Not that easy nowadays especially in West Wales and probably the same in mid Wales too.

Gareth
Guest
Gareth

At the very end of Gwyn Briwnant-Jones’ book Railways of Wales circa 1900, he imagines the situation of a booking clerk at Amlwch looking through timetables for the best route for a passenger wishing to travel to Penarth.

After first trying a mainly-LNWR route, and finding it couldn’t be done within a day, he looked at other internal routes within Wales, but eventually concluded that travelling via Shrewsbury was the best option, even then – at the turn of the last century and the end of the Victorian era.

Dave Brooker
Guest
Dave Brooker

Duel the A49/A483 route, then you’d have a connection from Newport and the M4 to the A55/M6, plus it would help mid Wales enormously

Dave Brooker
Guest
Dave Brooker

Transport for Wales already have a Newport to Chester service (2 and a half hours) so all this stuff about there being no north south connection is nonsense??

Huw Davies
Guest
Huw Davies

Great if you need to travel from west of Swansea to say Pwllheli. I think not.

Dave Brooker
Guest
Dave Brooker

Once you’re clear of Carmarthen, the size of towns and villages dwindles down to nothing, plus the terrain is a nightmare, nobody is going to build a railway when there’s no economic case.

More frequent trains on the lines that already exist could be the answer?

Huw Davies
Guest
Huw Davies

Decent road from Pembroke to Aberystwyth with buses would enable link with Cambrian coast rail , another existing service which is crying out for investment.

“West of Carmarthen dwindles to nothing…..” is seriously lacking in insight. The Haven has towns all round it. Several small towns on the coast which are tourism destinations. Rail already runs to some of those but needs to be stepped up a level to give better connectivity.

“Terrain is a nightmare….” if so you are easily frightened. Mostly rolling hills and valleys throughout 3 counties of Dyfed. No big deal for modern civils.

Dave Brooker
Guest
Dave Brooker

Not really, once you clear Carmarthen going west, there’s already a railway, North West next biggest town is Newcastle E, then nothing of any size until you get to Aber,.

As for going north south across the hills, if at the height of the railway age when land and labor was virtually free it could not be done, how impossible would it be today?

max wallis
Guest
max wallis

What’s up with Plaid’s advisors on marine renewables? Can they think of outdoing Labour’s commitment to the hopelessly uneconomic tidal lagoon in Swansea Bay, only by saying Plaid would build three? That’s before proof of concept. The Cardiff lagoon would trash a Special Area of Conservation, contrary to Euro-law. Only the Colwyn Bay scheme is a possible, but only economic with major leisure boating and protection from sea-surge flooding. Plaid proposes only one new offshore wind-farm when these are showing very good value with the newest giant turbines. Says nothing about wave power, or tidal current turbines, planned for Anglesey… Read more »

Dave Brooker
Guest
Dave Brooker

Never underestimate the Welsh political love of a vanity project

Hethin Bennett
Guest
Hethin Bennett

Plaid Cymru don’t know what they are talking about, are they going to pay for the rebuilding of all the low bridges between Crewe and Chester?

Adam Price made an ass of himself when he came up against a real jounalist on Pienaar’s politics this morning he should wind his victimhood neck in a bit.

Rhosddu
Guest
Rhosddu

No, there are currently no plans for Plaid Cymru to pay for the rebuilding of bridges between Crewe and Chester.