Wales and West

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Wales and West
Wales & west logo.svg
Franchise(s): Wales & West
13 October 1996 - 13 October 2001
Main region(s): Wales
Other region(s): South West, West Midlands, North West
National Rail abbreviation: WW
Parent company: Prism Rail

Wales & West[1] was a train operating company in the United Kingdom owned by Prism Rail that operated the South Wales & West franchise from October 1996 until October 2001.

In July 2000 Prism Rail was purchased by National Express.[2][3]


Wales & West operated passenger services in Wales and the West Country as seen in their route map.[4]

It also operated services to Liverpool Lime Street, Manchester Piccadilly, Birmingham International, Southampton, Brighton and London Waterloo.

Rolling stock[edit]

Wales & West inherited a fleet of Class 143, Class 153 and Class 158s from British Rail. Wales and West Railway also operated some 'different' trains on shorter services. Using four hired in Class 37/4's from EWS and old Mk 2 stock from West Coast Railway limited.[5]


Wales & West's fleet was maintained at Cardiff Canton and Exeter depots.


Wales and West carried out various enhancements to their Class 158 fleet including new carpets, revised seating layout and better air conditioning equipment.


In 2001 the Strategic Rail Authority decided to reorganise the South Wales & West and Valley Lines franchises, both being operated by National Express. Wales & West split into Wessex Trains and Wales and Borders Trains. Wessex Trains has since become part of First Great Western (Greater Western franchise) and Wales and Borders Trains has become Arriva Trains Wales.


  1. ^ Companies House extract company 3011029 Wales & West Passenger Trains Limited
  2. ^ National Express buys Prism for £166m The Telegraph 19 July 2000
  3. ^ National Express buys Prism for £166m The Guardian 19 July 2000
  4. ^ Wales & West route map
  5. ^ TeleRail
Preceded by
Regional Railways
As part of British Rail
Operator of Wales & West franchise
1996 - 2001
Succeeded by
Wales & Borders
Wales & Borders franchise
Succeeded by
Wessex Trains
Wessex Trains franchise