As part of the investment, Welsh Transport Minister, Edwina Hart AM, announced that Port Talbot Parkway will receive over £11.3m of funding to carry out essential redevelopment. In addition to improved station access, customers will enjoy a modernised ticket office and car park expansion. Stephen has been contacted by key local business people in the county about the condition of station facilities, following feedback from investors about their experience of travelling to Pembrokeshire.
Commenting on the investment, Stephen said:
“I was extremely pleased to see the Welsh Government taking the long overdue action to improve part of Wales’ rail network. Port Talbot is an important gateway station to West Wales, which is used by business investors and tourists – who are often required to complete their journey from Port Talbot to Pembrokeshire by car, taxi or bus.
He added: “We are a forward-looking country and we want potential investors to be confident about doing business in Wales. Gateway stations such as Port Talbot are currently poor adverts for inward investment in Wales. Today’s announcement will mean these railway stations will finally get the facelift they need.”
This news is especially welcome at a time when rail operators have finally decided to get to grips with the problem of human waste being dumped from train carriages onto railway lines across Wales.
Stephen has also made representations to Arriva Trains Wales and Network Rail about hygiene levels at train stations across West Wales. He pressed David Higgins, Chief Executive of Network Rail for more action to tackle this problem. Following these representations, Network Rail has now taken the decision to include more intensive cleaning methods as part of their cleaning regime.
Stephen added: “This issue has been raised with me by a number of constituents. In 2013, it is unacceptable for passengers standing at platforms to see detritus being dumped along the track. This does nothing for instilling a positive impression of Wales as a modern, welcoming place to visit and do business.”