Llandudno refurb - is that it?

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6Gman

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Visited the (expensively) refurbished Llandudno station this week.

What a let-down!

All they've done is enclose the entrance area with glass walls, provide a new car park and ... er ... that seems to be it!

And the enclosed part is only open when the station's staffed - 6 or 7 hours per day! The toilets close at 14.30. The booking office at 3.

So if you arrive at 15.05 (as I did) and need to pick up a timetable for your return journey (as I did) your best bet is the TIC in the town centre which - fortunately - was still open!

How much did all this cost?
 
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tom1649

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Total cost was £5.2 million.

They've moved the ticket office into a different part of the station building if I remember correctly.

It's also worth noting that the service levels on the branch have been cut since the station was refurbished.
 
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LNW-GW Joint

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Total cost was £5.2 million.
They've moved the ticket office into a different part of the station building if I remember correctly.

Luckily there's a ticket machine at the platform ends, outside the glassed-in area.
Reminds me of being shooed out of the rather similar Great Yarmouth station into the cold and wet, so they could lock up at 1800
 

6Gman

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Luckily there's a ticket machine at the platform ends, outside the glassed-in area.
Reminds me of being shooed out of the rather similar Great Yarmouth station into the cold and wet, so they could lock up at 1800

1800?

1800?

Spoilt English ********s :D

If you want a pee in Llandudno go before 2.30pm!
 

Bletchleyite

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Luckily there's a ticket machine at the platform ends, outside the glassed-in area.
Reminds me of being shooed out of the rather similar Great Yarmouth station into the cold and wet, so they could lock up at 1800

And yet the indoor bit of Bletchley (though not the bogs) is open 24/7. Indeed, it has to be as there's no other way onto the platform!

Is Llandudno really that dodgy?
 

Xenophon PCDGS

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Llandudno is still a good tourist attraction for people wishing to travel there by rail, but the A55 is one thing that has made it easier to access by road travel.

It does have the Great Orme Tramway, a nice promenade, a pier, but what my good lady wife also enjoy is Clare's of Llandudno department store on Mostyn Street with its Gallery Café that serves a very good cream tea.
 

Greenback

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It's disappointing to see that Llandudno trains have been cut. The town deserves better, but the improvements to the A55 over the last few decades must have hurt the railway, as have the social changes that have affected all seaside resorts.
 

Polarbear

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And yet the indoor bit of Bletchley (though not the bogs) is open 24/7. Indeed, it has to be as there's no other way onto the platform!

Is Llandudno really that dodgy?

Unfortunately, it can be. Although it is a nice place generally, it can be more than a bit rough (as several other seaside resorts can be) at times if you wander away from the main tourist areas. I have relatives who live in Craig-y-Don who have first hand experience of some of the less salubrious individuals that live around Llandudno.
 

PHILIPE

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It's disappointing to see that Llandudno trains have been cut. The town deserves better, but the improvements to the A55 over the last few decades must have hurt the railway, as have the social changes that have affected all seaside resorts.

The reason that the trains were cut was the introduction of the LHCS to Holyhead which, in turn, had a knock on effect on the Manchester to Llandudnos which also worked a shuttle trip to and from the Junction before returning. It will be seen that the service level hasn't been reduced later in the day.
 

Greenback

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Thanks for that, Philipe. A cut is still a cut, and while it would be much worse if there were also reductions in the afternoon and evening, it is going to hurt people who are travelling longer distances to and from the resort.
 

PHILIPE

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Thanks for that, Philipe. A cut is still a cut, and while it would be much worse if there were also reductions in the afternoon and evening, it is going to hurt people who are travelling longer distances to and from the resort.

It appears it was due to changing circumstances rather than deliberate.
 

6Gman

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What did they do? Add a small housing estate?

:D

Built a car park - useful.

Put in a taxi rank - useful, though the previous arrangement (taxis waited on the roadway that ran between the two main platforms - train to taxi in 10 seconds!) was more convenient.

Closed off the vehicular entrance and enclosed it with glass walls. Useful if the weather's bad since you can wait there rather than on the open platform. But only open 0830 to 1500, so not much use on a cold winter's evening.

Actually, thinking about it, summer evenings can be cold in North Wales :lol:

£5 million !
 

ivanhoe

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It's disappointing to see that Llandudno trains have been cut. The town deserves better, but the improvements to the A55 over the last few decades must have hurt the railway, as have the social changes that have affected all seaside resorts.

Llandudno is relatively thriving though. A family from Liverpool or Manchester is more likely as you say to use the A55 to get there. A train journey for a family of 4 would cost just too much for irregular train travellers who don't understand the complexities and I doubt whether Arriva Trains Wales go out of their way to entice train travel to Llandudno. They make most of their revenue on the Chester Manchester bit.
 

notlob.divad

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Llandudno is relatively thriving though. A family from Liverpool or Manchester is more likely as you say to use the A55 to get there. A train journey for a family of 4 would cost just too much for irregular train travellers who don't understand the complexities and I doubt whether Arriva Trains Wales go out of their way to entice train travel to Llandudno. They make most of their revenue on the Chester Manchester bit.

The main reasons individuals and families from the Liverpool Area would use the car instead of the train are:
1. that it takes about 2hrs each way from central Liverpool about 30 minutes more than a car. Add extra time if you have to get the train into Liverpool first.
2. It requires at least 1 change of trains and quite possibly 2 which given it is the closest city of over 100 000 people is quite appalling.
3. The cost, for those who have a car already (ie the one off/annual costs are already covered) even with 2 trips through the tunnel, parking and petrol costs it won't reach anything like the £40 for 2 adults 2 children and that is with a railcard, it is £70 for someone just turning up for a day out.

I am sure it is pretty much the same in Manchester apart from there are Direct Trains. Taking longer than the car costing twice as much even with a railcard, combined with the extra hassle of getting children on and off trains, is not the way the railway will compete for market share against the car for these type of trips.
 

Greenback

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I think you are basically agreeing with what I said aren't you ivanhoe? A thriving town should not have a gap in service in the middle of the day, which is when people from further away than Liverpool, Manchester and Chester are wanting to arrive. It's the Chester, Manchester and Liverpool peopel that ar emost likely to want to take advantage of that lovely A55, too.

The short break market is a pretty big one, and these are exactly the sort of people that want to arrive in the early afternoon, and depart at mid morning. Traditionally, this is when rail services have been at their quietest!

I accept that Bangor is an important market, but I'm not sure Holyhead deserves to be better served than Llandudno, despite the practical reasons that have led to these recent changes.
 

berneyarms

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I think you are basically agreeing with what I said aren't you ivanhoe? A thriving town should not have a gap in service in the middle of the day, which is when people from further away than Liverpool, Manchester and Chester are wanting to arrive. It's the Chester, Manchester and Liverpool peopel that ar emost likely to want to take advantage of that lovely A55, too.

The short break market is a pretty big one, and these are exactly the sort of people that want to arrive in the early afternoon, and depart at mid morning. Traditionally, this is when rail services have been at their quietest!

I accept that Bangor is an important market, but I'm not sure Holyhead deserves to be better served than Llandudno, despite the practical reasons that have led to these recent changes.

To be fair the gap in the middle of the day is down to providing a boat train to/from Manchester for the daytime sailings to/from Dublin.

There is a balance to be struck - how that's done with limited resources is another matter.

The daytime ferry sailings now have direct connections to and from London and Manchester - something that was badly needed.

As I outlined here in another thread - there is probably a need to try and look at the service pattern on the North Wales Coast - it's a tough one.

http://www.railforums.co.uk/showthread.php?t=130852
 
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Greenback

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I did say that there were practical reasons for the reduction in services. I suppose ultimately it's all down to a lack of stock, which leads to having to rob Peter to pay Paul.
 

tom1649

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I did say that there were practical reasons for the reduction in services. I suppose ultimately it's all down to a lack of stock, which leads to having to rob Peter to pay Paul.

I guess the only other way would be if they could somehow re-time the Blaenau Ffestiniog train to fill the gap in the middle of the day. At least people could connect from the Holyhead train then. I suspect you'd have to alter the whole timetable to achieve this though seeing as the whole branch runs on just one unit.
 

Greenback

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It's all a papering over the cracks exercise really, isn't it? Ideally I wouldn't want any line to lose services, I'm just not sure that the Holyhead/Llandudno balance is right in the current timetable.
 

Bletchleyite

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I guess the only other way would be if they could somehow re-time the Blaenau Ffestiniog train to fill the gap in the middle of the day. At least people could connect from the Holyhead train then. I suspect you'd have to alter the whole timetable to achieve this though seeing as the whole branch runs on just one unit.

The branch is an annoyance in a way because it is the only thing round there that couldn't run on a pure clockface connectional model. Running it two hourly with one unit was tried, but just wasn't robust enough.

I suppose with improved roads round there you could use a bus as a "second unit" south of Betws every other run, running only some trains through, but that would be controversial.
 

ivanhoe

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I think you are basically agreeing with what I said aren't you ivanhoe? A thriving town should not have a gap in service in the middle of the day, which is when people from further away than Liverpool, Manchester and Chester are wanting to arrive. It's the Chester, Manchester and Liverpool peopel that ar emost likely to want to take advantage of that lovely A55, too.

The short break market is a pretty big one, and these are exactly the sort of people that want to arrive in the early afternoon, and depart at mid morning. Traditionally, this is when rail services have been at their quietest!

I accept that Bangor is an important market, but I'm not sure Holyhead deserves to be better served than Llandudno, despite the practical reasons that have led to these recent changes.

We are only a cigarette paper apart Greenback. My memories as a kid going to North Wales coast, would be going on a Crossville as opposed by train from Liverpool.Llandudno gets lots of coaches nowadays and I suspect gaps in railway timetables reflect this. I cannot see this pattern being reversed in the near future. It would be of interest to hear the views of North Wales forum members on the pattern of rail services.
 

Greenback

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It would be good to know what local people think of the gaps in services. Like I said earlier, though, my concern is also for the people that might want to go to Llandudno by train, and be put off by the current timetable. They may just go elsewhere, they may amend their journey to fit in and still go there, but they may be forced onto a coach!
 

Polarbear

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One reason I rarely use the train to travel to/from Llandudno is the cost.

A day return from Chester is now priced at £19.40 and this now has peak restrictions attached to it. For flexibility, I would have to spend £21.30.

Contrast this to the cost of using a car along the A55, which for a 95 mile round trip at 47 mpg comes in at around £10.00. I know there are other costs to consider, but given the large disparity between the turn up & go rail fare, and the petrol costs, I still think that the car is cheaper on this particular journey.

Unfortunately, it doesn't help that Arriva also operate the local buses. Whilst it is cheap to travel to/from Llandudno by bus from Chester, it takes over 3 hours each way and is therefore not competitive. In days of yore, we used to have the Coastliner bus, which was a good alternative to the train as the 2 hour journey time was a reasonable trade off to save a bit on the rail fare.

Happy days...:cry:
 

notlob.divad

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I would be really interested to know Local people's views on services along the whole North Wales Coast, not just Llandudno. On the basis of the infrastructure that is there not wild schemes to reopen lines. How much do they really care about having a regular direct links to Cardiff/London, or would they prefer better connections to Liverpool, Manchester and the WCML at Chester / Warrington and Crewe? Obviously the answers would be different depending on where along the North Wales coast the person comes from, but I wouldn't be surprised if a majority would prefer a very different service to that which is currently available.
 

6Gman

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As the OP may I respectfully point out that this thread was about the (expensive) refurbishment of Llandudno station rather than North Wales coast service patterns.

:)
 

Greenback

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Sorry, we have dragged the thread off topic, and I hold hands up for being a major cause of it!
 
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