“Ah, two trains on the single track at the same time – that can’t be right.” – Arriva’s comment when Fishguard Trains pointed out a new timetable problem.
Page 38 of Arriva’s new West Wales Timetable (from May 14th) shows a Saturday train leaving Cardiff at 15:14, into Fishguard Harbour at 18:34. Then on page 39 another train leaves Cardiff at 16:04, into Fishguard Harbour at 18:51. A seventeen minute service interval is just not possible on Fishguard’s single-track branch, even if it was intended.
What has happened is that the current 15:14 service to Fishguard from Cardiff has been retimed to leave at 16:04 – an improvement all round, as it is faster and better timed – but while the new service is shown correctly, the service it replaces has not been removed. Today Arriva confirmed to Fishguard Trains that the error (which just affects Saturday times) will be corrected on line, but – and here’s the problem – it is too late for the printed timetables to be corrected.
So anyone checking Arriva’s printed West Wales Timetable for the afternoon departure from Cardiff and Swansea to Fishguard is going to be misled, until a new edition in September. We can’t help being disappointed. Our new service and new station need all the support they can get. An official timetable showing times for a train that doesn’t exist is not helpful.
In the circumstances, perhaps it would be unkind to point out another error in the same timetable: Arriva misspells our new station Abergwuan ac Wdig.