Transport for Wales Rail

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Transport for Wales Rail
  • Transport for Wales / TfW Rail
  • Trafnidiaeth Cymru / TrC Trenau
Transport wales logo18.svg
01.06.21 Swansea 175104 (51231606534).jpg
A Class 175 Coradia at Swansea in June 2021
Franchise(s)Wales & Borders
Main region(s)Wales
Other region(s)
Stations operated248
Parent companyTransport for Wales (for Welsh Government)
Reporting markAW[nb 1]
Dates of operation7 February 2021 (2021-02-07)
PredecessorKeolisAmey Wales
Other Edit this at Wikidata
Route map
Route map

Transport for Wales Rail Limited, branded as Transport for Wales and TfW Rail (Welsh: Trafnidiaeth Cymru and TrC Trenau), is a Welsh publicly owned train operating company, a subsidiary of Transport for Wales (TfW), a Welsh Government-owned company. It commenced operations of the day to day services of the Wales & Borders franchise on 7 February 2021, as an operator of last resort, succeeding KeolisAmey Wales.[2][3] Transport for Wales Rail manages 248 National Rail stations,[4][5] including all 223 in Wales,[6] and operates all passenger mainline services wholly within Wales, and services from Wales, Chester, and Shrewsbury to Liverpool, Manchester, Manchester Airport, Crewe, Birmingham, Bidston and Cheltenham.


In May 2018, the Wales & Borders franchise was awarded by Transport for Wales to KeolisAmey Wales.[7] Scheduled to run for 15 years, it commenced in October 2018.[8][9]

Following a collapse in revenues, and a significant reduction in passenger numbers as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the original franchise had become financially unviable. On 7 February 2021, Transport for Wales Rail Limited, the Welsh Government's operator of last resort, succeeded KeolisAmey Wales as operator of the Wales & Borders franchise. KeolisAmey and Transport for Wales will continue a partnership on further improvements on the network, with Amey Infrastructure Wales (AIW) continuing to have an involvement in the delivering of some key projects such as the Core Valley Lines.[10][11][12][13]


As of December 2022, Transport for Wales Rail operates these regular and daily services Monday to Friday:[14]

North Wales to South Wales
Route tpd Calling at
Holyhead to Cardiff Central 8
Marches, West Wales, Crewe–Shrewsbury Lines and Swanline
Route tph Calling at
Manchester Piccadilly to Cardiff Central 1
Swansea to Fishguard Harbour 4tpd
Cardiff Central to Milford Haven 1tp2h
  • 5 trains per day Cardiff-bound extend to Manchester Piccadilly, calling at Newport, Cwmbran, Pontypool and New Inn (2tpd), Abergavenny, Hereford, Leominster, Ludlow, Craven Arms, Church Stretton, Shrewsbury, Nantwich, Crewe, Wilmslow, and Stockport.
Swansea to Pembroke Dock 1tp2h
Cardiff Central to Swansea 1
Crewe to Shrewsbury 1tp2h
Cambrian Line
Route tph Calling at
Birmingham International to Aberystwyth 1tp2h
Machynlleth to Pwllheli 1tp2h
Heart of Wales line
Route tpd Calling at
Shrewsbury to Swansea 5
North Wales Coast Line
Route tph Calling at
Birmingham International to Holyhead 1tp2h
Conwy Valley line
Route tpd Calling at
Llandudno to Blaenau Ffestiniog 6
Borderlands line
Route tph Calling at
Bidston to Wrexham Central 1
Llandudno–Manchester, Chester–Crewe, and Liverpool–Wrexham
Route tph Calling at
Llandudno to Manchester Airport 1
Chester to Crewe 1 Shuttle service
Liverpool Lime Street to Wrexham General 1tp2h
Route tph Calling at
Maesteg to Cheltenham Spa 1
Ebbw Valley Railway
Route tph Calling at
Ebbw Vale Town to Cardiff Central 1
Crosskeys to Newport 1
Rhondda line
Route tph Calling at
Cardiff Central to Treherbert 2
Merthyr, Rhymney, and Vale of Glamorgan Lines
Route tph Calling at
Barry Island to Aberdare 2
Barry Island to Merthyr Tydfil 1
Bridgend to Merthyr Tydfil 1
Penarth to Bargoed 2
Penarth to Rhymney 2
Coryton and Cardiff City lines
Route tph Calling at
Radyr to Coryton 2
Butetown branch line
Route tph Calling at
Cardiff Queen Street to Cardiff Bay 5 Shuttle service
  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj ak al am an ao ap aq ar as at au av aw ax ay az ba bb bc bd be bf bg bh bi bj bk bl bm bn bo bp bq br bs bt bu bv bw bx by bz ca cb cc cd ce Request stop
  2. ^ a b c d e f Limited service

Rolling stock[edit]

Transport for Wales Rail inherited from KeolisAmey Wales a fleet of Class 143, 150, 153, 158, 170 and 175 diesel multiple units, Class 230 diesel-battery-electric multiple units, Class 769 bi-mode multiple units and Mark 4 and DVT sets with an allocation of Class 67 locomotives.[15][16]

Class 143 Pacers, which were not compliant with persons with reduced mobility legislation (PRM), were withdrawn on 29 May 2021 when their PRM dispensation ended.[17]

Class 197 and 231 diesel multiple units, Class 756 tri-mode multiple units and Class 398 tram-trains will replace the Class 150, 153, 158, 175 and 769 units by 2023.

Family Class[15] Image Type[15] Top speed Carriages[15] Number[15] Routes operated[15] Built
mph[15] km/h
Locomotive-hauled stock
Premier Service 67 Alstom General Motors Class 67 No 67003 (7786994576).jpg Loco 125 200 6 1999–2000
InterCity 225 Mark 4 TfW Mark 4 TSO 12315.JPG Coach 140 225 4 or 5 37[18] 1989–1992
Driving Van Trailer Caerdydd Canolog - TfW 82226 trên i Caergybi.JPG Control car 1 8[18]
Diesel multiple unit
Sprinter 150/2 TFWCLASS150.jpg DMU 75 121 2 36 1987
153 Super Sprinter Caerdydd Canolog - TfW 153325+153361 trên i Cheltenham.JPG 1 26 1987–1988
Class 153 Transport for Wales Diagram.png
158/0 Express Sprinter TFW 158835 (51170871886).jpg 90 145 2 24 1989–1992
Class 158 in the Transport for Wales livery.png
Bombardier Turbostar 170/2 Cyffordd Twnnel Hafren - TfW 170203.JPG 100 161 3 8[20] 1999
TfW Class 170-2 3 Car.png
Alstom Coradia 175/0 & 175/1 Coradia 1000 TFW 175009 (51644057856).jpg
TfW Newport arrival (51864548227).jpg
100 161 2 8[citation needed] 1999–2001
3 14[citation needed]
TfW Class 175 0.png
TfW Class 175 1.png
CAF Civity 197[22] -2023-02-02 Transport for Wales Class 197 at Liverpool South Parkway.jpg 100 161 2 51 From 2020
3 26
TfW Class 197 2 Car.png

TfW Class 197 3 Car.png

Diesel-electric multiple unit
Stadler FLIRT 231 Gloucester - TfW 231001 on test.JPG DEMU 90 145 4 11 2020–2022
Bi-mode multiple unit
Vivarail D-Train 230[25] TfW 230 on test July 2020.jpg BMU 60 97 3 5 2019–2020
Class 230 TfW.png
BR Second Generation (Mk 3) 769/0 & 769/4 Flex Caerdydd Canolog - TfW 769003 trên i Rhymni.JPG
Transport for Wales 769 452 (52021515624).jpg
100 161 4 8[26]

5 769/0s and 3 769/4s[16]

2019–2020[nb 2]
TfW Class 769.png

Future fleet[edit]

All of Transport for Wales Rail's KeolisAmey Wales-inherited and extra temporary fleet is due to be replaced by 2023 (with the exception of the Class 67 locomotives).[27]

Cascades and refurbishments[edit]

Class 67-hauled Mark 4 set[edit]

Six Class 67 locomotives have been adapted to work with three sets each comprising four Mark 4 carriages and a Mark 4 Driving Van Trailer, which will replace the Mark 3 stock previously used on locomotive-hauled services.[citation needed] The twelve carriages and three DVTs were able to cascade from London North Eastern Railway, as a result of the introduction of Class 800s and Class 801s on the East Coast Main Line.[citation needed] The Mark 4 coaches have retained the Virgin Trains East Coast livery, but with Transport for Wales labels attached.[citation needed] The Mark 4 Driving Van Trailers will be repainted into the new Transport for Wales livery.[citation needed] Four of the six Class 67 locomotives have been repainted into TfW Rail livery.[citation needed] TfW Rail introduced the Mark 4 sets in June 2021 on Cardiff to Holyhead services, and from December 2022 they will operate services between Swansea and Manchester using trains which had previously been planned to be used on the Blackpool route by Grand Central.[28] The three Mark 4 sets will be retained and will remain on the routes they will work from their date of introduction on TfW Rail services.[citation needed]

Class 153[edit]

TfW Rail will retain eight Class 153 units to operate services on the Heart of Wales line.[29]

Class 170[edit]

All 12 Class 170 units are to be transferred to East Midlands Railway.[30] All of TfW Rail's two-car units have already moved to East Midlands Railway with the three-car units to follow in Spring 2023.[20]

New trains[edit]

For the longer term fleet replacement, 148 brand new trains will be introduced including 77 CAF Civity trains (Class 197), 35 FLIRT trains (Class 231 & Class 756) and 36 Citylink tram-trains (Class 398) have been ordered. The addition of these trains to the fleet, from 2021 to 2024 but mostly in 2022–23, will allow the 109 (total) Class 150, 153 (13 by then), 158, 175 and 769 units to be withdrawn.

Class 197 Civity[edit]

A total of 77 Class 197 Civity diesel multiple units have been ordered from CAF for long-distance routes. These trains will have end gangways, but fewer toilets than the Class 158 and Class 175 DMUs they replace.[31] They will however be quicker, with more powerful engines and more efficient transmissions for better acceleration, as well as a higher top speed than the Class 158. Fifty one Class 197 units would be two-cars and 26 would be three-cars.[16]

CAF will undertake fabrication, welding and painting of the Class 197 fleet in their factory in Beasain, Spain. The first Driving Motor carriage vehicle bodyshell had largely passed this stage by 12 February 2020, when it was pictured in the Beasain factory.[32] The painted bodyshells will then be shipped to Newport, South Wales, for further assembly/component-fitment at CAF's new UK factory in Llanwern.[33]

Class 230 D-Train[edit]

TfW Rail Class 230 on test prior to delivery

Five Class 230 D-Train diesel- and battery-electric multiple units[16] were expected to enter service from May 2022.[34] These are being built in England from former London Underground D78 Stock aluminium bodyshells by start-up rolling stock manufacturer Vivarail between 2019 and 2020.[16][35] Entry into service was planned for the second quarter of 2023. At the beginning of April 2023, the Class 230s entered service on the Borderlands line.[36][37][38]

Class 756/231 FLIRT and Class 398 Citylink[edit]

Also, a total of 35 Stadler FLIRT units have been ordered (consisting of 24 Class 756 tri-modes - 7 three-car & 17 four-car units - and 11 Class 231 diesel-electrics), along with 36 Class 398 Stadler Citylink tram-trains.[39] These will be manufactured at the Stadler factory in Szolnok, Hungary and assembled at their plant in Bussnang, Switzerland.

Future fleet summary[edit]

Family Class Image Type Top speed Carriages Number Routes operated Built In service
mph km/h
Tri-mode multiple units[40]
Stadler FLIRT 756 TfW 756 102 (52392826112).jpg TMU 100 161 3 7 Services between Caerphilly/Coryton to Penarth[41][42] From 2020[16] 2023
4 17 Services between Rhymney to Barry Island/Bridgend via Vale of Glamorgan[41][42]

Stadler Citylink 398 Class 398 at Taffs Well Control Centre.jpg Tram-train TBC 3 36 Services from Cardiff to Treherbert, Aberdare and Merthyr Tydfil From 2020[40] 2024

Past fleet[edit]

Between September 2021 and November 2022, all of the two-car Class 170s transferred to East Midlands Railway.[20]

Family Class Image Type Top Speed Carriages Number Routes Operated Withdrawn Built Notes
mph km/h
Diesel Multiple Units
Bombardier Turbostar 170/2 Chepstow - TfW 170271 Cheltenham service.JPG DMU 100 161 2 4 2021-2022 2002 Transferred to East Midlands Railway
TfW Class 170-2 2 Car.png


  1. ^ Reporting mark inherited from Arriva Trains Wales, the operator of the franchise between 2003 and 2018.
  2. ^ Class 319/4 units were initially built between 1987 and 1988


  1. ^ "TRANSPORT FOR WALES RAIL LTD - Overview (free company information from Companies House)". Retrieved 7 April 2021.
  2. ^ "Welsh rail franchise now in public ownership". Transport For Wales News. Retrieved 10 February 2021.
  3. ^ "Welsh rail franchise now in public ownership". GOV.WALES. Retrieved 7 April 2021.
  4. ^ "App | Transport for Wales". Retrieved 30 June 2022.
  5. ^ Passenger's Charter (PDF). Transport for Wales Rail. February 2021. p. 4.
  6. ^ "Rail station usage: April 2020 to March 2021". GOV.WALES. Retrieved 30 June 2022.
  7. ^ Keolis/Amey wins £5bn Wales rail contract Archived 2020-11-09 at the Wayback Machine BBC News 23 May 2018
  8. ^ "Welsh Revival". Railways Illustrated. No. 186. August 2018. p. 6.
  9. ^ "TfW Rail Services Begin Operation". Modern Railways. No. 842. November 2018. p. 12.
  10. ^ Written Statement: Future of Rail update Welsh Government 22 October 2020
  11. ^ Transport for Wales rail services to be nationalised BBC News 22 October 2020
  12. ^ "Welsh Government takes control of franchise". The Railway Magazine. No. 1436. November 2020. p. 6.
  13. ^ "Welsh Government takes control of Wales & Borders". Rail Magazine. No. 917. 4 November 2020. p. 14.
  14. ^ "Timetables". Cardiff: Transport for Wales. Retrieved 17 December 2022.
  15. ^ a b c d e f g "Info for...
    . Archived from the original on 10 December 2022. Retrieved 16 May 2023.
  16. ^ a b c d e f g "A guide to our fleet of trains - Fleet Accessibility Specifications" (PDF). Transport for Wales. February 2022.
  17. ^ "TfW says goodbye to last Pacer trains". Transport for Wales Rail Limited. 1 June 2021. Retrieved 12 January 2022.
  18. ^ a b TfW acquires former Grand Central Mk4s Rail Express issue 301 June 2021 page 34
  19. ^ a b "What's Happening in North Wales". Transport for Wales. Archived from the original on 7 June 2018. Retrieved 4 June 2018.
  20. ^ a b c "'197's' due to debut on Conwy Valley". Modern Railways. December 2022. Volume 79. Number 891. P. 86.
  21. ^ a b "One Year In". Archived from the original on 5 November 2019. Retrieved 5 November 2019.
  22. ^ "KeolisAmey reveal new-look Wales trains and services". BBC News. BBC. 4 June 2018. Archived from the original on 27 January 2021. Retrieved 4 June 2018.
  23. ^ "New train on Conwy Valley Line welcomes its first passengers". North Wales Pioneer. Retrieved 25 November 2022.
  24. ^ "What this means for Mid and South West Wales". Transport for Wales. Archived from the original on 14 October 2018. Retrieved 30 September 2018.
  25. ^ "Service Improvements" (PDF). Transport for Wales. Welsh Government. Retrieved 4 June 2018.
  26. ^ "Only 8 769s for TFW". Today's Railways UK. No. 246. August 2022. p. 67.
  27. ^ "£800m fleet renewal plan for new Welsh franchise". International Railway Journal. Simmons-Boardman. 4 June 2018. Archived from the original on 2 April 2019. Retrieved 2 April 2019.
  28. ^ "Transport for Wales introduces premium trains". Transport For Wales News. 7 June 2021.
  29. ^ "153s acquired". Modern Railways. No. 874. 4 July 2021. p. 13.
  30. ^ "EMR takes stock". Modern Railways. Retrieved 15 December 2021.
  31. ^ Clark, Rhodri (23 April 2020). "Concern about '197' interior spec". Modern Railways. Key Publishing Ltd. Archived from the original on 27 January 2021. Retrieved 3 October 2020.
  32. ^ "TfW report completion of first class 197 bodyshell". Twitter. Archived from the original on 12 February 2020. Retrieved 3 October 2020.
  33. ^ "CAF commences design and engineering on DMUs for Wales and Borders franchise". Rail Technology Magazine. Cognitive Publishing. 21 February 2019. Archived from the original on 2 April 2019. Retrieved 2 April 2019.
  34. ^ "Coronavirus delay to Wrexham '230s'". Rail. No. 941. 6 October 2021. p. 15.
  35. ^ "New trains will be a boost for North Wales rail passengers". Press Release. Welsh Government. 28 March 2019. Archived from the original on 2 April 2019. Retrieved 2 April 2019.
  36. ^ "Spring target for TFW '230' debut". Modern Railways. No. 895. Stamford: Key Publishing. March 2023. p. 86.
  37. ^ "Wales' first hybrid train enters service on Borderlands Line". Transport For Wales News. Retrieved 3 April 2023.
  38. ^ "Wales' first battery-electric train enters service on Borderlands Line". RailAdvent. Retrieved 3 April 2023.
  39. ^ "STADLER TO DELIVER 71 NEW TRAINS FOR WALES & BORDERS". Press Release. Stadler Rail AG. 28 February 2019. Archived from the original on 2 April 2019. Retrieved 2 April 2019.
  40. ^ a b Trains for Wales under construction Archived 2020-12-04 at the Wayback Machine - Rail Business UK. Retrieved 14 December 2020
  41. ^ a b "AMs WB Overview Presentation vJP AM" (PDF). KeolisAmey Wales. KeolisAmey Wales. Retrieved 5 June 2018.[dead link]
  42. ^ a b "CVL Rolling Stock List" (PDF). Transport for Wales. Transport for Wales. Archived (PDF) from the original on 27 January 2021. Retrieved 14 August 2019.

External links[edit]

Preceded by
KeolisAmey Wales (t/a Transport for Wales Rail Services)
Operator of Wales & Borders franchise
Succeeded by