Train companies are braced for significant criticism from AMs today as the Assembly's Business and Enterprise Committee looks into the causes of huge queues following several Rugby World Cup fixtures at Cardiff's Millennium Stadium. Tournament organisers have revealed they contributed £2.4 million for transporting fans to Cardiff and to get them home after matches.
But, in their evidence to members, Rugby World Cup 2015 say "queueing arrangements were regarded as unacceptable at both Paddington and Cardiff." They say that after seeing little improvement during the first three matches, the organisers "wrote to the First Minister...expressing frustration and requesting a step-change in operations" citing poor communications on the ground and disorganised queues.
Arriva Trains Wales and First Great Western, who operate the majority of trains from Cardiff Central Station say queuing systems were modified during the event and more trains were made available and overall 162 extra services ran, adding over 1,200 extra carriages.
First Great Western also say the station layout could not cope with the volume of passengers: "Changing the layout of Cardiff Central, or building a new station dedicated to the stadium and only used on match days, would transform the experience of fans and visitors to Cardiff, as well as protecting Cardiff’s commuters and business travellers."