Campaign Group pushes for rail service improvements to South Pembrokeshire line

By Paul Evans   |   Content editor   |
Saturday 23rd April 2022 3:45 pm
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Tenby train station
(Observer pic )

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A new pressure group has been formed to campaign for significant improvements to the rail service on the South Pembrokeshire line - Whitland, Tenby, Pembroke Dock.

Following a noticeable decline in the service over the last few years a number of individuals have gathered together to form the ‘South Pembrokeshire Rail Action Group’ (SPRAG).

The group plans to lobby both local and national politicians with the aim of improving the rail services provided by Transport for Wales.

SPRAG will be actively campaigning for the introduction of an hourly train service between Swansea and Pembroke Dock along with improvements to journey times and affordable ticket prices.

“These improvements would have a positive impact on the local economy, employment opportunities, climate change, social mobility and mental health,” said Neil Westerman, a founding member of SPRAG.

“The south Pembrokeshire rail line is already the busiest rail line in the county, with Tenby the busiest station.

“With the growth of staycation tourism the potential for the line is significantly greater than any other line in Pembrokeshire as the line serves three main tourist destinations, Saundersfoot, Tenby and Pembroke as well as the ferry terminal at Pembroke Dock.

“With an hourly service the line would become more attractive to local travellers thus providing better work opportunities for young people as well as playing its part in the climate emergency by reducing pollution from car exhausts.

“A recent report (October 2021) undertaken by Capita on the proposed Swansea Bay and West Wales Metro recommended the introduction of an hourly service between Swansea and Pembroke Dock,” continued Neil.

“Significantly the report concluded that the proposal had a positive business case and the potential for revenue to cover operating costs was highlighted.

“SPRAG will be bringing this report to the attention of the local decision makers and seeking their support in lobbying Welsh Government for the introduction of the improved service. The Capita report suggested a timescale of two to three years for the introduction of the hourly service.”

Samuel Kurtz, member of the Welsh Parliament for Carmarthen West and South Pembrokeshire, has also expressed his support for SPRAG, stating: “I am pleased to hear about the setting up of the South Pembrokeshire Rail Action Group and I wish them every success in providing a voice for interested individuals and organizations to campaign for improved rail services.”

If you are in agreement with the aims and objectives of SPRAG, to sign up to the mailing list send your name and the name of your closest train station to: [email protected]

Alternatively you can contact the group’s Facebook page or on Twitter @allaboardsprag.

“The more supporters we have the greater our lobbying power,” added Neil.

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