Exactly how the rail strikes will impact services in Wales this week

People are being warned to check before they travel this week due to two days of strikes on railways. The national union of Rail, Maritime, and Transport Workers (RMT) will strike on Wednesday, July 27, and train drivers’ union Aslef has announced its members will strike on Saturday, July 30. All operators who run services in Wales say there will be disruption across the majority of services which won’t be limited to strike days.

While Transport for Wales isn’t involved in either dispute its services will be affected – particularly on Wednesday, July 27 when the majority of services on the Wales and Borders network will be suspended. It has also warned there is also expected to be disruption on the days prior to and after the industrial action. GWR say on strike days it will operate an extremely limited service between 7am and 6.30pm and last trains will leave much earlier.

Due to the timing of the strike action, services after strike days will also be affected. Passengers are advised to find alternative ways to travel on these days and to only travel if absolutely necessary. The majority of train services will not operate and there will be no services on some routes.

Read more: Devastated dad helplessly watched nine-year-old son killed by runaway pick-up truck Avanti West Coast has published revised timetables for travel and says passengers can amend their tickets, or ask for a refund. “If you do travel, expect severe disruption and plan ahead. The days after industrial action are also likely to be affected.” They say their timetables will “significantly reduced with shorter hours of operation, less frequent services, and trains that do run are expected to be very busy.”

Cross Country say their services will be impacted on Wednesday, July 27, as well as Thursday, July 28, and Saturday, July 30. This is what we know so far about how train services will be disrupted. To keep up to date with news from across Wales subscribe to our newsletters here.

Tuesday, July 26

GWR say trains will run as planned with some minor changes to late night services.

Please check before you travel.

Wednesday, July 27

Transport for Wales services The majority of rail services across the Wales and Borders network will be suspended because TfW will be unable to operate rail services on Network Rail infrastructure. On the Wales and cross-border services, the only services operating will be a Cardiff to Newport shuttle with one train operating hourly in each direction between 7.30am and 6.30pm.

No other services will be able to operate. On Core Valley Lines train services will operate between Cardiff Central and Rhymney, Treherbert, Aberdare, and Merthyr Tydfil in an hourly service in each direction between 7.30am and 6.30pm. Trains will be able to operate between Radyr and Treherbert, Aberdare, and Merthyr Tydfil before 7.30am and after 6.30pm and then up to 8.30pm due to engineering work.

Road transport will take customers between Cardiff Central and Radyr in each direction outside of these hours but the warning is there will be extremely limited road transport capacity. All train and road transport services are expected to be extremely busy due to the reduced service frequency. This is a change from the three days of industrial action in June when rail services started/finished at Radyr.

There is also expected to be disruption on the days prior to and after the industrial action. Great Western Railway GWR say there will be a “significantly limited service” operating and people should make alternative travel arrangements and only travel if absolutely necessary.

No rail services will operate on the South Wales main line (Carmarthen/Swansea-Cardiff Central). A full list of cancelled services is here. Avanti West Coast services

Avanti is publishing its revised timetables online, but the timetable for Wednesday and Thursday is yet to be published. You can see it here. CrossCountry

On Wednesday, July 27, CrossCountry will be operating a heavily reduced service. There will be no service between Birmingham New Street and Cardiff Central. Road transport will operate between Gloucester and Newport.

If you have an advance, off peak or anytime ticket booked for Wednesday, July 27, you can use this on Tuesday or any date up to and including Tuesday, August 2, on any reasonable route without having to amend your ticket. You can also amend your ticket to an alternative travel date after Tuesday, August 2. If you booked through CrossCountry you can amend your ticket free of charge.

All other customers are advised to contact their ticket retailer. No seat or cycle reservations will be available on this day.

Thursday, July 28

Transport for Wales There is also likely to be disruption on Thursday, TfW says, due to the shift patterns of Network Rail’s signallers and the significant challenges moving trains and crew to operate between strike days.

Customers are urged to check their journey before they travel. Online journey planners will be updated between two and four days before the first strike day. On Wales and cross-border lines no trains will run before 7am on all Wales and cross-border services and services are likely to be much busier than usual – particularly the first services of the day.

For Core Valley Lines, the first services of the day that depart from Treherbert, Aberdare, and Merthyr Tydfil will all be timed so they will be arriving into Radyr after 7am. No trains will run before 7am on any lines except between Treherbert, Aberdare, and Merthyr Tydfil to Radyr. No pre-planned road transport services will be in operation before 6.30pm on Core Valley lines.

The warning is again that services are likely to be much busier than usual and particularly the first services of the day. Great Western Services Trains will continue to be disrupted, please make alternative travel arrangements and only travel if absolutely necessary.

Avanti West Coast The timetable is yet to be confirmed. It will be updated here.

CrossCountry No seat or cycle reservations will be on offer on any service. On the Birmingham New Street and Cardiff Central engineering work means road transport will operate between Gloucester and Newport.

Friday, July 29

CrossCountry

On the Birmingham New Street and Cardiff Central service engineering work means road transport will operate between Gloucester and Newport.

Saturday July, 30

Transport for Wales TfW will be running a full timetable but services are likely be affected by strike action at other train operating companies which could result in short-notice cancellations and changes. Services from Swansea to Newport are expected to be very busy due to the reduced Great Western Railways timetable and passengers are advised not to travel unless necessary.

TfW services between Shrewsbury and Birmingham are expected to be very busy with the Commonwealth Games taking place and no services being operated by West Midlands Trains. Passengers are advised not to travel unless necessary. Great Western Railway services

The Aslef strike among GWR train drivers will mean most parts of the GWR network will have no train service. An extremely limited service will only operate on the routes below but services will start later and finish much earlier than normal:

  • Bristol Temple Meads to London Paddington
  • Bristol Temple Meads to Cardiff Central
  • Reading to Oxford
  • Reading to Basingstoke

No other GWR services will run. Avanti West Coast

Avanti is yet to confirm its timetable but you can see details here when they do.

Sunday, July 31

GWR say “disruption is likely please check before you travel”. You can see their page here. Avanti is yet to confirm its timetable but you can see details here when they do.

What if I have tickets?

TfW say customers with existing non-season tickets valid for travel on the two strike days can use those tickets any time between Tuesday, July 26, and Tuesday, August 2.

Customers are encouraged to avoid travelling on Friday, July 29, and Sunday, July 31, as services are expected to be extremely busy. Alternatively customers can claim a full refund, with no admin fee charged. Season ticket holders can apply for compensation via Delay Repay.

In the meantime TfW has suspended sales of advance tickets for the strike dates in order to minimise the number of people disrupted. Customers are advised to check the TfW or Traveline websites, and those of other operators, for updates. CrossCountry advise contacting them about refunds, with the details all online. Avanti say you will not face admin fees if you wish to claim a refund.

Their refund details are here. GWR say people with tickets for travel on strike days to be able to travel on the day before and up to and including Tuesday, August 2. Their details are here.

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