TfW response to timetable workshop

Class 175 at Crewe

TfW have responded to the virtual timetable consultation in April. Chairman John Cresswell made a submission on our behalf.. They say:

As you know, we made the decision in early March to cancel our timetable workshop in Shrewsbury. It was an uncertain time, where many meetings and interactions had to be adapted – we had to devise a way in which the workshop could continue without relying on it being face to face.

We shared an update of significant timetable changes, along with some slide packs explaining how Rail Replacement Services and Events are managed. I appreciate that these materials are difficult to analyse in isolation, without an opportunity to discuss and ask questions. I’d like to thank everyone who provided feedback and I appreciate that many of you shared much detailed suggestions that go beyond the information presented.

We have read through all the comments, discussed them extensively with colleagues and collated it into the attached report.

Before you respond via email, might I strongly suggest you contact your Stakeholder Manager in the first instance as further background work will be required for many requests and they will be able to go into detail about the next steps. Additionally, if there are further changes down the line, we will arrange more detailed, regional engagement during the year.

We are still running a reduced timetable – our service will resume in stages, with services re-introduced to the most popular services initially. We’ll continue to consult with health boards to align our timetable with health worker shift patterns near hospitals, and we’re in touch with business groups to ensure that we’re supporting businesses.

It is inevitable, but Covid-19 will impact this year’s activities significantly and, again, this is covered in the attached report.

An extract from the report relevant to us says:

We received numerous requests to change services due to demand namely:
– The 0435 Cardiff to Manchester, calling at Wrenbury in the morning to meet a growing commuter demand, suggesting it would need to leave Cardiff earlier
– Saturday services to call at Wem, Whitchurch and Nantwich – understanding it is likely to require TfW services to skip a different station and/or retimed services from Carmarthen
– Additional services to Wem – although this may increase the journey time between Cardiff and Manchester
– Additional services via the Halton Curve
– A service from Milford Haven to Cardiff (using the district line, avoiding Swansea, shortening the journey). The longer-term solution would be a parkway station and/or South West Wales Metro project which are being explored currently (both at feasibility stage) and we will share more detail in future
As a first step, we will look at the analytical data behind each suggestion to ascertain whether there is demand. We will also work with stakeholders to gather passenger feedback on additional services and see if a business case can be developed for consideration. Whilst the above listed additional services are unlikely to be achievable increases in 2020, we will continue to work with stakeholders on these suggestions for potential future implementation.

The full report is here

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