(Title Image: © Copyright DS Pugh and licensed for reuse under Creative Commons Licence BY-SA-2.0)
Two train operating companies have submitted requests to the Office of Rail Regulation to provide new long-distance rail services from December 2020.
Transport for Wales (TfW Rail) has put forward proposals to extend current Birmingham New Street services (from Holyhead, Pwllheli and Aberystwyth) to Coventry (pdf).
TfW Rail also proposes an hourly service between Swansea and Bristol Temple Meads, calling at Neath, Port Talbot, Bridgend, Cardiff Central, Newport, Severn Tunnel Junction and Filton Abbey Wood. The services would run Monday-Saturday (pdf).
In addition, new operator Grand Union Trains have proposed a “fast” service between Cardiff and London Paddington, which would only call at Newport, Severn Tunnel Junction and Bristol Parkway (pdf). It’s estimated this could cut the Cardiff-London journey time to around 90 minutes.
However, objections have been raised by the UK Department of Transport and TfW Rail that the Grand Union proposal would negatively impact Great Western Railway services and would lead to timetable clashes (pdf).