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Cutting the power at Cardiff would be timid and disappointing (and a big embarrassment for Ieuan Wyn Jones) - Randerson

July 22, 2009 1:25 PM

Commenting on speculation that the Westminster Government may use tomorrow's Cabinet Away day in Cardiff to announce electrification of the Paddington to Cardiff line, Welsh Lib Dem Shadow Transport Minister, Jenny Randerson AM said:

"The opportunity for electrification on to Swansea is here now but will not last for long. Electrification to Cardiff is welcome but would be an incomplete job.

"Wales needs to be treated on the same terms as England and that means we need electrification for the whole route to Swansea. Anything less than that, particularly if it takes decades to get beyond Bristol, will not be good enough.

"Both in terms of the economic development of South West Wales and in terms of environmental impact, cutting the power at Cardiff would be a timid and disappointing move.

"This would also be a big snub to Ieuan Wyn Jones and his week old Transport plan. After the M4 fiasco, he was banking on a high speed route stretching across the country. This would be hugely embarrassing for him and his department.

"I also want to see the Welsh Assembly Government strongly investigate the electrification opportunities for the valley lines network. A 21st century transport system for Cardiff and the Valleys would have phenomenal economic benefits for some of our poorest communities."