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RAIL STUPID.

Byline: STEVE BAGNALL

A TRAIN timetable has been blasted by a passenger group for being" full of errors" and potentially causing delays.

Arriva Train Wales times for September to December covering the Chester, Wrexham and Shrewsbury line appeared on the internet and immediately came under fire for having "glaring holes".

Bank holiday services were missing and other changes meant passengers travelling to Birmingham faced delays, according to Bob Hargreaves of the Chester to Shrewsbury Rail Users group.

The timetables were removed from the internet this week after being up for a matter of days, said Mr Hargreaves.

He added: "What has really annoyed us is they consult with stakeholders, such as rail user groups and councils, over the timetables, but they haven't done it this time.

"There are six bank holiday exclusions on the services, even though the timetable has no bank holidays between September and December 8 - its entire duration. This has made us suspicious they are trying to roll over the bank holiday omissions and get them in by the back door when they start up again.

"No thought has been given to a new premier service from Holyhead to Cardiff passing through Wrexham. It meant passengers from Ruabon/ Chirk/Gobowen would be disrupted, arriving 30 minutes later at Birmingham. "If they had consulted with us, we could have picked these up. All the rail user websites have picked up on many more errors. Stakeholders are livid at no longer being consulted by ATW about any changes forced on them.

"One also wonders, do ATW no longer proof read before publication? The timetable was live on the internet from last Friday and pulled off the net on Wednesday for no reason."

Mike Bagshaw, ATW commercial director, said: "We are still finalising the details of the timetable and are in discussions with the Welsh Government and we will be consulting with everybody.

We are hoping to be in a position to have timetable changes that deliver a better package of services."

A Welsh Government spokesman said: "We are aware of proposed changes and are discussing the implications. ATW are required to consult with passenger focus and local authorities about any significant permanent changes."

CAPTION(S):

Passengers fear services from Wrexham (pictured) to Shrewsbury and beyond will suffer
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Publication:Daily Post (Liverpool, England)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Jul 28, 2012
Words:378
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