|Driver training on the Gaer spur (Ian Brewer)|
"The train on platform 4 is for Ebbw Vale Parkway, calling at Risca, Rogerstone, Cross Keys…"
The announcement took me by surprise, especially as I was standing on Platform 2 on Newport Station. No they have not gone and done it, trains from Ebbw Vale to Newport and vice versa are not up and running. The only reason why these trains are running via Newport is because of a programme of improvements (running between 1st May and 18th May).
There have been loud and persistent calls for many years for the completion of the long promised permanent rail link from the Ebbw Vale into the City but no concrete action. The South Wales Argus took up the gauntlet and actively backed the campaign to restore the rail link from Ebbw Vale to Newport, which complimented the rail link from Ebbw Vale to Cardiff. In the last 18 months things have gone ominously quiet, with the silence from the Labour in Wales Welsh government and our local Labour representatives becoming particularly deafening.
Now in relation to the completion of the final stage of the Ebbw Vale to Newport line, my advice would be not to hold your breath. I have begun to suspect, and here I hope I am wrong, that there is and has never been any real intention to complete it. The line as is works perfectly well for the proposed Cardiff City region – perhaps it’s time for the Labour in Wales Government in Cardiff to come clean and admit it?