Wales & West - Wales & West Enhancements - B
Wales & West - B
Wales & West Enhancements
Wales & West carried out various enhancements to their 78-vehicle Class 158 fleet including new carpets, internal repainting and upgrades to air conditioning equipment. Seating was replaced throughout, with a revised layout offering a greater proportion of seats at tables and fewer airline-style seats.
One member of the Class 158 fleet was used to trial additional safety features. This included an airline-style lighting strip along the carriage aisle leading to the exits and illuminated arrows above internal doorways. In time, most of the company's trains also received an automated system of pre-recorded safety announcements.
Prism Rail also gave an undertaking to install passenger information displays at 205 stations. This ambitious project went on to cost Prism significantly more than expected, with no chance of recouping its investment – but the commitment was upheld and the project completed. Even the remote Sugar Loaf station that typically receives fewer than 100 passengers per year was equipped.
Wales & West other improvements committed to included:
Wales & West Corporate Identity
By the end of the 1990s, the company had started to develop its own vehicle liveries to replace those inherited from Regional Railways. An experimental silver, blue and orange livery carried by 158867 evolved into a dedicated silver and navy livery for the flagship Alphaline fleet. The rest of the fleet began to receive an array of different promotional liveries featuring locations from the company's operating area.
The shortened Wales and West name was adopted to replace the original identity of South Wales & West Railway, with various updates to the company logo taking place.
Wales & West Demise
In 2000 the Strategic Rail Authority announced its intention that a single all-Wales franchise should take over the majority of rail services in Wales.
Accordingly, the Wales and West brand was withdrawn in October 2001 and services were redistributed between franchises and rebranded as follows:
The Valley Lines franchisee, Cardiff Railway Company Ltd, took on responsibility for most of Wales & West's services in Wales and changed its principal trading name to Wales and Borders Trains.
Wales & West Overview
Wales & West Franchise(s): Wales & West