Cardiff Central railway station


Cardiff Central railway station

Infobox UK station
name=Cardiff Central
other_name=Caerdydd Canolog
manager=Arriva Trains Wales
locale=Cardiff
borough=City and County of Cardiff
owner=Network Rail
code=CDF
usage0405=7.743
usage0506=8.358
usage0607=9.127
platforms=7
years=1850
1932
events=Opened
Rebuilt
start=



caption=Frontage of Cardiff Central station
latitude= 51.4755
longitude=-3.1780

Cardiff Central railway station ( _cy. Caerdydd Canolog) is a major British railway station on Central Square in Cardiff, Wales.

It is the largest and busiest in Cardiff itself and in Wales. It is one of the major stations of the British rail network, being the tenth busiest station in the United Kingdom, outside of London [Data from the 06/07 station usage] .

The station is managed by Arriva Trains Wales who operate most services. First Great Western and CrossCountry also serve the station. It is a major hub for the Valley Lines suburban services (several lines in Cardiff and the surrounding valleys), First Great Western Intercity services to Bristol and London, and CrossCountry services to Nottingham and Edinburgh. It serves as an interchange between the rest of South and West Wales to major English and Scottish towns and cities.

The station was known as "Cardiff General" until 7 May 1973 [ [http://pirate.cardiffschools.net/index1.htm Cardiff Timeline] ] . It is located near the Millennium Stadium on Central Square in the city centre. It is one of 21 railway stations in the city, and one of the two main stations, the other being Cardiff Queen Street.

The whole station including the Water Tower close to platform 0 is Grade II listed.

History

In the early 1840s the South Wales Railway were trying to find a suitable site for a new railway station, however, the area that is now Cardiff Central railway station was prone to flooding. It was Isambard Kingdom Brunel's solution to divert the River Taff further to the west, this created a larger and safer site for the building of the new railway station.cite web |url= http://cricketarchive.com/Glamorgan/History/Cardiff_Arms_Park/Creation.html|publisher=Cardiff Council |title= Cardiff Arms Park, A short History - The Creation of the Arms Park |accessdate=2008-05-22]

The station was opened by the South Wales Railway in 1850. Its successor company, the Great Western Railway, rebuilt it in 1932 as is marked by the name carved onto the façade (larger than the name of the station). The formerly separate "Cardiff Riverside" suburban station of 1893 was integrated into the main station in 1940 but its platforms ceased to be used for passenger traffic in the 1960s [cite book|author=Barrie, D.S.M.|title=A Regional History of the Railways of Great Britain, vol. 12: South Wales|publisher=David & Charles|year=1980 ISBN-10|0-7153-7970-4] .

Station layout

The railway station plaza, Central Square, accommodates Cardiff central bus station.

There are two entrances, the first and main of which, is on Central Square and accessed from Wood Street, adjacent to Cardiff central bus station and two main taxi ranks. This entrance leads to the station's main concourse.

The other entrance is at the rear of the station, accessed from Tresillian Way / St. Mary Street, where the station's car park is found. The railway tracks are above the two subways, which run parallel under the tracks linking the two main entrances and the platforms are accessed by stairs and lifts. From both entrances, a valid ticket is required to pass through a barrier and gain access to the platforms.

Facilities

The majority of facilities are located on the main concourse. These include:
*Ticket Desks and Machines
*Cash Machines
*Information Desk
*Telephones
*WCs
*W H Smith
*Upper Crust Take Away
*Sandwich Bar
*Marks and Spencer Simply Food
*Burger King (on Central Square)
*Starbucks

Toilets, vending machines and waiting rooms are found on all islands. An Upper Crust café is situated on platforms 1 and 2.

Cycle parking is available in the Wood Street car park. Cycles can be taken on most trains without a reservation, unless on CrossCountry services and trains to London Paddington when a reservation must be made at least two hours before departure.

Platforms

Cardiff Central currently has seven platforms, numbered 0, 1, 2, 3a/b, 4a/b, 6 and 7.

Platform 0

Platform 0 is not accessed by the main subways to the platforms, it is accessed by a staircase at the west of the station next to the Marks and Spencer store. Platform 0 is mainly used for the following services:

CrossCountry:

* Nottingham via Birmingham New Street and Derby usually operated by Class 170 'Turbostar' units
* Edinburgh via Birmingham New Street, Derby, Doncaster and Newcastle operated by a Cross Country Voyager

Arriva Trains Wales:

* Ebbw Vale Parkway via Rogerstone and Risca and Pontymister. These are usually operated by Class 150 'Sprinter' units.

Platform 1

Platform 1 is mainly used for the following services:

Arriva Trains Wales:

* Cheltenham Spa via Gloucester usually operated by Class 158 'Express Sprinters'.
*Manchester Piccadilly

CrossCountry:

* Newcastle via Bristol Temple Meads, Birmingham New Street, Sheffield and York railway station usually operated by a CrossCountry Voyager

First Great Western:

* London Paddington via Bristol Parkway, Swindon and Reading usually operated by High Speed Trains
*Taunton via Bristol Temple Meads and Weston-super-Mare
*Portsmouth Harbour via Bristol Temple Meads, Weston-super-Mare, Bath Spa, Salisbury, Southampton Central, Cosham and Portsmouth and Southsea

Platform 2

Platform 2 is used for the following services:

Arriva Trains Wales:

* Cheltenham Spa via Gloucester usually operated by Class 158 'Express Sprinters' that have originated from Maesteg.
* Manchester Piccadilly via Newport, Hereford, Shrewsbury and Crewe usually operated by Class 175 'Coradia' units that have originated from either Carmarthen or Milford Haven.
* Holyhead via Newport, Hereford, Shrewsbury, Wrexham General and Chester usually operated by Class 175 'Coradia' units that start here.

CrossCountry:

* Nottingham via Birmingham New Street and Derby usually operated by Class 170 'Turbostar' units

First Great Western:

*Taunton via Bristol Temple Meads and Weston-super-Mare
*Portsmouth Harbour via Bristol Temple Meads, Weston-super-Mare, Bath Spa, Salisbury, Southampton Central, Cosham and Portsmouth and Southsea

Platforms 3a/3b

Platforms 3 and 4 are divided into 'A' and 'B' sections and are thus capable of holding two local trains or a single HST train. Unlike at Birmingham New Street, however, these are not separately signalled and it is not uncommon for the other platforms to be used by more than one train.Platform 3 is used for the following services:

Arriva Trains Wales:

* Milford Haven via Bridgend, Swansea and Carmarthen usually operated by Coradia units
* Carmarthen via Bridgend and Swansea also usually operated by Coradia units

First Great Western:

*Swansea via Bridgend, Port Talbot Parkway and Neath usually operated by High Speed Trains

Platform 4a/4b

Platform 4 mainly acts as a terminus platform but can be used as a spare for platform 3 if for whatever reason the latter is unavailable. The following services that depart from platform 4 are:

Arriva Trains Wales:

* Maesteg via Pontyclun and Bridgend.
* Shrewsbury via Newport and Hereford.

First Great Western and CrossCountry services from London Paddington and Nottingham respectively will terminate at platform 4. Also the 14:22 CrossCountry service from Newcastle which arrives at Cardiff Central at 20:19 will terminate at platform 4.

CrossCountry:

* Newcastle via Bristol Temple Meads, Birmingham New Street, Sheffield and York railway station usually operated by a CrossCountry Voyager

Platform 6

Platform 6 is used for Valley Lines services to the north and east of Cardiff and to the Valleys. Every single train that departs from platform 6 will call at Cardiff Queen Street. The following services that depart from platform 6 are:

Arriva Trains Wales:

* Coryton via Cardiff Queen Street, Heath Low Level, Ty Glas, Birchgrove, Rhiwbina and Whitchurch.
* Bargoed via Cardiff Queen Street, Caerphilly and Ystrad Mynach
* Rhymney via Cardiff Queen Street, Ystrad Mynach, Bargoed and Tir-Phil.
* Merthyr Tydfil via Cardiff Queen Street, Radyr, Pontypridd, Abercynon and Quakers Yard.
* Aberdare via Cardiff Queen Street, Radyr, Pontypridd, Abercynon and Mountain Ash.
* Treherbert via Cardiff Queen Street, Radyr, Pontypridd, Tonypandy, Llwynypia, Ystrad Rhondda, Ton Pentre, Treorchy and Ynyswen.

Platform 7

Platform 7 is used for Valley Lines services to the west of Cardiff and services to the Vale of Glamorgan. The following services that depart from platform 6 are:

Arriva Trains Wales:

* Radyr via Ninian Park, Waun-Gron Park, Fairwater and Danescourt.
* Penarth via Grangetown and Dingle Road.
* Barry Island via Grangetown, Dinas Powys and Barry.
* Bridgend via Grangetown, Dinas Powys, Barry, Rhoose (for Cardiff International Airport) and Llantwit Major.

Platform 7 is also used for services from Treherbert that terminate at Cardiff Central.

Destinations

Arriva Trains Wales

* Maesteg via Bridgend
*Cheltenham Spa via Gloucester
*Manchester Piccadilly via Newport, Hereford, Shrewsbury and Crewe
*Holyhead via Newport, Hereford, Shrewsbury, Wrexham General and Chester
*Milford Haven via Bridgend, Swansea and Carmarthen
*Ebbw Vale Parkway via Rogerstone, Risca and Pontymister and Newbridge


=Cardiff & Valley Suburban services=

*Radyr via Fairwater
*Coryton via Heath Low Level and Rhiwbina
*Merthyr Tydfil via Cardiff Queen Street, Pontypridd and Abercynon
*Aberdare via Cardiff Queen Street, Llandaf, Pontypridd and Abercynon
*Treherbert via Cardiff Queen Street, Llandaf, Pontypridd and Ystrad Rhondda
*Rhymney via Cardiff Queen Street, Llanishen, Caerphilly and Ystrad Mynach
*Bridgend via Barry, Rhoose Cardiff International Airport and Llantwit Major
*Penarth via Grangetown and Dingle Road

CrossCountry

*Nottingham via Newport, Cheltenham Spa, Birmingham New Street and Derby.
*Edinburgh via Newport, Bristol Temple Meads, Bristol Parkway, Birmingham New Street, Sheffield, York and Newcastle.

First Great Western

*London Paddington via Newport, Bristol Parkway and Swindon using High Speed Trains
*Portsmouth Harbour via Newport, Bristol Temple Meads, Bath Spa and Southampton Central usually operated by Express Sprinters
*Taunton via Bristol Temple Meads and Weston-super-Mare, usually operated by Sprinter units or Pacer units
*Swansea via Bridgend and Port Talbot Parkway using High Speed Trains.

Cardiff Central bus station

Cardiff Central bus station is the central point of reference for all local and national bus services in Cardiff. The terminal contains six covered ranks on the north side for most Cardiff Bus as well as other services. Long-distance services to the valleys and coach services, e.g. TrawsCambria and National Express, run from rank A at the north end. Stops either side of Wood Street, which runs alongside the main terminal, are used mainly for departures to Barry, Penarth, Heath Hospital, Cardiff Bay, Caerau, Ely and Tremorfa.

The railway station also has a dedicated bus stop on the south side of the station, referred to as "rear of the station" by station staff. On National Rail departure boards this is sometimes referred to as Cardiff Central Bus Stn "CCB". The stop is also used for Rail Replacement services and Cardiff Bus BayCar service.

Buses run weekdays from early morning (around 05:00) to late at night, the last services leaving at 23:20 on almost all major routes.

Cardiff International Airport rail link

Cardiff International Airport is situated 12 miles east of Cardiff city centre. In 2005, a section of the Vale of Glamorgan Line was re-opened between Barry and Bridgend. Ever since, there have been services to Rhoose Cardiff International Airport railway station once every hour for most of the day (Monday-Saturday) and a two-hourly service on Sunday. At the airport station, passengers must take additional transport. There is a free shuttle provided to take passengers to the main terminal. Buses to and from the airport appear on the National Rail Enquiries website.

Future plans

Traffic levels on the London Paddington route are rising faster than national average, with continued increases predicted. The now defunct Strategic Rail Authority produced a Route Utilisation Strategy (RUS) for the Great Western Main Line in 2005 to propose ways of meeting this demand, Network Rail plan to implement a new study in 2008. In the meantime, their 2007 Business Plan includes the provision of extra platform capacity at Cardiff Central (as well as Newport and Bristol Parkway), also resignalling and line speed improvements in South Wales, most of which would be delivered in 2010-2014.

Gallery

See also

* List of railway stations in Wales
* Transport in Wales

References

External links


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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