meeting the 18:46
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Wow! That’s busy! Great to see good numbers using the train, does this happen often? If so, any chance of getting a decent onward bus option (from the harbour station please) as well as a larger car park at FGW?
Am I mistaken though, or is the train pictured a class 150 vice the booked class 158 again? That unit will probably be on the daytime boat train the following day, not great. Better than no train at all I suppose, but ATW certainly need some more quality long-distance rolling stock.
Great to see Goodwick station so busy – helps to make the case that these services need to continue. Goodwick is getting busier month by month. Great photographs there!
Rhydgaled – there is a bus connection to Fishguard off this service from Station Hill, while if the connection is missed there is a later bus from opposite Tesco’s on the Parrog that heads the same direction. I don’t see what else you’d expect while bus finances are so tight…
Nothing but draughty bus shelters at FGW, there’s a waiting room and toilets at the harbour in case you have a long wait (and the long-distance rail services not being ‘late’ until they are 10mins behind schedule, the timetable should really be timed as a longish wait of 15-20min connections). Also, the lack of through buses to/from anywhere other than Fishguard town hall is a problem (I realise there are some, but not for all the trains).
Be thankful that you have a choice between the Harbour station with its enclosed waiting area – kindly made available to train passengers by Stena I would add, and the obviously popular Goodwick facility which has reasonable bus links. With the vast majority of ‘local’ passengers and visitors to the area now using Goodwick station it would seem the new station is serving its market well, and is the obvious hub to link with loca bus services.
It is great that there are bus connections at Goodwick, a simple change at Fishguard seems reasonable when the alternative of diverting the 412 Haverfordwest service via Goodwick would inconvenience far more passengers than it would benefit.
One solution of course may well become available once PCC can finalise the funding of service supplies into the ‘replica’ building at Goodwick, it could then be leased for use as a cafe. Perhaps you would want to open such a business to provide the undercover waiting area you so obviously believe is important.
Personally I have no issue with the shelters on the platform – they are far better than traditional bus shelters and compare well with similar facilities at stations with similar footfall. There is a great little chippy at the top of station hill if your wait is longer than 10 minutes or so, I use it regularly, considerably more than before our additional trains started, alternatively the Glendower etc are good too.
There isn’t really a choice between the stations though is there? Parking at the harbour is prohibitively expensive and the buses don’t go there. Yes, thanks to Stena for making their facilities available which would make Fishguard Harbour the ideal bus interchange if only the buses went down there. As for routes, I never said divert the 412. Instead, you could perhaps run the 413 through to Cardigan (via Fishguard Harbour) and cut the 412 back to FishguardOrNewport-Haverfordwest in the hours the train runs with the extended 413 taking it’s place. Cardigan to Haverfordwest via Fishguard just doesn’t make sense as a through route, though Newport to Haverfordwest probably does.
The shelter at Goodwick may be the same as elsewhere, but that fairly universal standard is lamentable, not just at Goodwick, since it is inadaquate for rail connections. Whitland is also a terrible place to have to change trains. Don’t get me wrong, FGW is a great station for car access but if you are using a car you don’t need to wait very long on the platform, so the shelter we have is fine. If you are interchanging between public transport however the waits are much longer (or not long enough, risking a missed connection and an even longer wait) and better facilties are required.
As for the ‘replica’ building I maintain that it has none of the character of the orriginal and should be pulled down and done properly. What a waste. The trouble with a cafe is that it would likely not be open for all the daytime services and would probably be for customer use only. Not an ideal solution to the woes of bus/rail interchange.
Meanwhile in the real world………
Doubt you’d get far with swapping the 412 / 413 routes around, especially as the passenger numbers would be small – look at the numbers doing the bus connections now – enough to justify a connection to Fishguard but not more. Disrupting the travel patterns of the majority to suit a handful of passenger is not going to happen. There is however merit in some re-timing of connecting buses to increase the time to make the connections more robust, but not at the cost of breaking connections at Fishguard Square etc.
Facilities at Goodwick are very good for the level of use. If you were to have the facilities you wanted at an un-staffed Goodwick what would stop local youths congregating there and causing other issues? – you’ll be looking for a fully manned station next – this is not the 1950s!!
There is absolutely nothing wrong with the replacement building at Goodwick – it is certainly keeping the spirit of the original while meeting present building regulations and operating requirements. All it needs is water,power,sewage services and a tenant to make use of the facility. It was not built to be part of the station facilities but was a requirement of conservation area regulations. Suggestions that it be pulled down – for what to waste even more money in a vain attempt to re-create some 1950s idyll?
Come up with practical suggestions by all means but constantly doing down a very worthwhile facility that has made a real difference to locals and visitors, on a site that is purporting to encourage people to use the train service isn’t on. Rejoice in the fact that Goodwick station was reopened in a very short timespan (look at other station reopenings…) and at a cost far, far less than industry norms.
There is a choice available, and most locals and visitors to the area choose Goodwick – this suggests to me that you are in a very small minority unhappy with the facilities there. Personally I think it is fantastic and all I’d change would be the provision of a Ticket machine and hope that use continues to increase year on year so that the case for a car park extension becomes overwhelming!
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