More seats and improved trains are coming from Transport for Wales this month thanks to a £15m investment. The next Class 769 train has been in service since the end of February, and the first new-look Class 150 leaves Cardiff Canton week beginning the 8th March. Both trains are part of a wider project by Transport for Wales to offer more seats and better accessibility.
Ken Skates, Minister for Economy, Transport and North Wales, said: “Improving the quality of our trains was a big motivation behind the investment in our rail network we’ve made through Transport for Wales. Helping more people use public transport not only requires convenient and reliable services, but also high-quality trains and stations that makes the rail network more attractive to use. It’s therefore really good news to see this progress being made.”
(Credit: Transport for Wales)
Nine Class 769s will be introduced, with three (769002, 769003 and 769006) already in service, with more planned to enter service throughout 2021. ‘Flex’ 769s will operate between Cardiff Central and Rhymney, but plans are underway to extend this to Penarth later in 2021.
All 36 Transport for Wales 150s (150208, 150213, 150217, 150227, 150229–231, 150235–237, 150240–242, 150245, 150250–260, 150262, 150264, 150267, 150278–285) will be refurbished with new interiors and exteriors.
Alexia Course, Director of Transport Operations at TfW, added: “We are continuing with our transformational programme and the Flex trains we’re introducing will provide more seats, space and improved accessibility. We’re also investing in our thirty-six Class 150 Sprinter trains to improve the customer experience throughout Wales and the Borders. We’re continuing to face the huge challenges presented by the pandemic and that’s why it’s so important that we look to provide more seats and space on our trains, as well as modern refreshed interior. The safety of our customers and colleagues continues to be our top priority and we’re investing for the future when restrictions ease. Currently, I’d like to reinforce the Welsh Government’s message, that public transport is for essential travel only, when there are no alternatives available.”