It has been announced that space for 6,500 more commuters a week will be made on Transport for Wales services from December this year.


Additional trains will also be introduced across the Wales and Borders rail network to enhance service capacity.

Planned improvements include:

  • Valley lines will see an increase in four-carriage trains on peak services. This, combined with other rolling stock changes, will create space for 6,500 more commuters to use the services every week.
  • There will be refurbished Mark 4 intercity carriages on some services between North Wales and Manchester, making the service more accessible.
  • Class 170 trains with more space, accessible toilets, information systems, power sockets and Wi-Fi will be used between Cheltenham and Maesteg and between Cardiff and Ebbw Vale.

Since Transport for Wales took over the rail franchise in October 2018, passenger feedback has highlighted the need to improve fleet capacity and resilience across the network.

To do this, Pacer trains will be kept in use for a short period during 2020. Alongside the Class 37 loco hauled trains, the Pacer’s will gradually be removed from service and replaced by the more modern and comfortable Class 769s in the new year.

Porterbrook, the supplier of the delayed Class 769’s, will provide extra Class 153 trains until the former are ready for use.


Mary Grant, CEO of Porterbrook, said:

“Some of TfW’s plans depend on our innovative Class 769 trains, whose introduction into service has been subject to delays for which we apologise. We are actively working with TfW and our supply chain to deliver these trains as soon as possible.”


James Price, Transport for Wales CEO said:

“Our customer research reveals that being able to sit or stand comfortably on a train is a top priority for many people, and therefore we hope that our customers will welcome plans which will mean a big increase in capacity for December.

We have always focused on delivering what our customers want, and we will do all we can to provide further capacity, which is their key priority. We must remain responsive to the needs of all of our customers, even if this means changing our plans.”


Information Source: Transport for Wales