CALLS have been made for a train operating company to reconsider its decision to omit station stops along the North Wales coast on its afternoon service from Holyhead.

In December, Transport for Wales (TfW) made a change to its timetable. As a result, the 4.51pm from Holyhead to Cardiff does not stop at Colwyn Bay, Rhyl or Prestatyn.

Dr James Davies, MP for Vale of Clwyd, has sent a letter to James Price, chief executive of TfW, highlighting the problems this is causing passengers travelling to and from Rhyl and Prestatyn, and urging him to review the situation.

"I have received a considerable number of complaints from constituents since these changes were introduced," Dr Davies said.

“Since mid-December, the removal of Rhyl and Prestatyn as stops for the 4.51pm Holyhead to Cardiff service has been causing difficulties for those who have relied on it for work, or their university studies.

“Rail users need quality services connecting all the stations of North Wales, Crewe, Liverpool and Manchester, including our regional airports.

“In the short term I have called on them to reinstate stops at Rhyl and Prestatyn for the 4.51pm Holyhead to Cardiff service. Should capacity be available to service longer routes, I have also asked them to look first and foremost at the reintroduction of direct trans-Pennine services."

Cllr Brian Jones, Lead Member for Waste, Transport and the Environment at Denbighshire County Council, has contacted Transport Minister for Wales, Ken Skates AM, over the timetable changes made by TfW.

Cllr Jones said: “Some of the revisions to rail timetables in December 2019 resulted in a detrimental impact on Denbighshire residents and visitors and I have written to the Transport Minister to highlight this.

“The 4.51pm Holyhead to Cardiff no longer stops at stations between Llandudno Junction and Chester. Passengers from Rhyl and Prestatyn heading South have a reasonable alternative by changing trains at Chester, but those returning to either Rhyl or Prestatyn from stations to its West are less fortunate. The preceding 3.38pm from Holyhead is too early for peak commuters and, arguably, the 5.31pm too late by the time it arrives in Bangor.

"The current 4.51pm used to stop at Colwyn Bay, Rhyl and Prestatyn and its absence from these stations is an obvious gap during peak commuter travel times.

“I would ask TfW Rail to consider its stopping pattern along the North Wales Coast Line for December 2020. I appreciate the difficulties in securing paths and in meeting the aspirations of a disparate set of travellers, but my view is that the passenger timetable should be no less robust than it was when TfW Rail took over. To do otherwise seems to be a backward move in an age when we are promised incremental changes on Wales’ railway.

"The commitment to a four and a half hour journey time from Holyhead to Cardiff though laudable should not be at the expense of passenger detriment on the wider railway."

TfW has been approached for comment.