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The employee magazine of Arriva Trains Wales/Trenau Arriva Cymru

SUMMER 2011

LOOKING

GOOD

Class 158 fleet gets a makeover ...and stylish new CENTRE PAGES uniforms go live

Proud to have you on board


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Plenty of positives as major projects come to fruition By Managing Director

Tim Bell

QUITE a lot seems to have happened since my last column, apart from the Royal Wedding! Firstly the new ERTMS in-cab signalling system was fully commissioned on the Cambrian in late March. The system is the first of its type on UK rail and individual elements such as some of the station signalling arrangements are a first in world railways. The project is a major achievement for everyone at Arriva Trains Wales who has been involved in the commissioning over the last few months and I appreciate the hard work and patience involved, especially by those working the system every day. However the system is not without early snags and the present reliability is not what it needs to be. We are chasing down the project leaders in Network Rail and Ansaldo to close out the outstanding issues. Another major project that has just been announced, which will have significant impact on the company, is the electrification of the Great Western Mainline to Cardiff including a Valleys scheme. Full details of the Valleys electrification have not been announced as yet but the initiative will definitely help to increase travel-to-work opportunities in South Wales. Also, as I write, the final two weeks’ commissioning of the Newport resignalling is taking place. This should lead to better performance and more flexible train service opportunities. Following this scheme the Cardiff resignalling will be developed through the planning stage leading to improved access/egress from Canton and additional platforms at Cardiff Central and Queens Street. As a result there will be more capacity to enhance the Valleys timetable in the future. Finally the new Arriva Trains Wales uniform will be delivered to stations and depots soon. In part the initiative comes in response to staff views over a period of time. The new uniform is a significant investment for the business as it is of an enhanced quality and design. We have tried to respond to all the wearer trial feedback and tweaked the design many times over the last few months. There will be new guidance issued to all uniform wearers so that our customers, as well as staff, gain the benefit of standard presentation across the company. The changeover will be on a specific named day so that all staff can be fully compliant with the new uniform going forward.

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ASPECT Summer 2011

Group Station Manager Martyn Brennan, left, pictured during a visit to the Penarth Lifeboat Station with the RNLI’s chief Newport fundraiser Stuart Leatherdale, centre, and Lifeboat Crew Member Phil Duffield.

Fundraising helps

local lifeboats T

HEY save lives on storm-tossed seas of the Bristol Channel on a regular basis, turning out at a moment’s notice to rescue sailors and members of the public. The plucky lifeboat crews who operate out of Penarth and Barry benefit from fundraising carried out on a regular basis by volunteers on Newport station concourse. A total of seven visits have been made by collectors since 2006, usually on Saturdays when international rugby matches have been taking place in Cardiff. With £1,460 raised over the last five years, the RNLI is confident that the fundraising carried out with Arriva’s blessing has contributed in a significant way to the lifeboat stations’ running costs. It is estimated that it costs £378,000 per day to maintain the service nationally – the cost of a pair of seagoing gloves is £16, crew training costs £1,214 per crew member per year, and “B” class lifeboats such as the one pictured at Penarth are £165,000. Stuart Leatherdale, RNLI’s chief Newport

fundraiser, said: “We are very grateful to Arriva Trains Wales for their support in giving us the opportunity to fundraise at Newport station. The RNLI could not save lives at sea without the support of the public and 84p out of every pound is spent on operations.” Martyn Brennan, Group Station Manager at Arriva Trains Wales, said: “We are pleased to assist the RNLI with their fundraising activities at Newport. “With 31 lifeboats round the Welsh coast, their efforts in raising valuable funds to help save lives at sea has a direct impact on many of the communities across our network.” For further information about how you can support the RNLI please contact their website at west@rnli.org.uk or the Wales and The West Regional office on 0121-780-6960. Penarth’s two inshore lifeboats, the Maureen Lilian, a B-Class Atlantic 85, and the Connie Dains, a D-Class, have been named as a result of local fundraising efforts and appeals.

COVER PICTURE: Electrical Engineer Derek Parry,Technical Inspector Matthew John, Head of Engineering Matt Prosser and Engineering Developments Manager Richard Pierce on board 158 838 at Cardiff Canton Depot.


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Andy sings ‘clean living’ blues Gospel M

OST blues bands revel in hell-raiser songs that appeal to the dark side of the emotions. But Andy Long’s three-piece group is different – they’re a “clean living” outfit specialising in Gospel. The Tim Crahart Blues band, featuring the Resource Controller, has brought out a CD entitled No Drinkin’, No Cheatin’, No Shootin’ in defiance of the usual trend. With Andy on bass guitar, the band often performs in churches in the Valleys and most recently played at a charity event in a religious setting at Newport. “The blues tradition centres on songs about getting drunk and going astray – but we don’t do any of that,” said Andy. “We’re in the Gospel tradition and you might say we sing clean living blues.” The band also plays mainstream gigs at pubs, clubs and festivals. It was recently on the bill at the Jazz Café in Cardiff.

Andy Long with his bass guitar at Cardiff Central station.

‘Floral’ Class 158 is set to bloom at top Flower Show as part of Women’s Institute display celebrating coastal town A FLORAL version of an Arriva Trains Wales Class 158 train is set to turn heads at the prestigious Tatton Park RHS Flower Show. A three-dimensional, railway-inspired flower bed is being created for the show in Cheshire between July 20-24 by Harlech Women’s Institute backed by ATW sponsorship. The exhibit, entitled Spirit of Harlech, will aim to reflect the coastal town’s link with the railway while also evoking the sea by featuring two boats. The WI has sent specifications for the 1.4 metre-high train to a specialist

company who will use carpet bedding in Arriva’s corporate colours on a metal frame. Plants will include helichrysum and senecio for the yellow, sedum for the green and alternanthera for the dark areas. A surrounding area in the garden will be planted by the ladies with echevaria to suggest rails and succulents for the ballast. “We want to show a train running through the heart of our community, reflecting the partnership that Harlech WI has with Arriva Trains Wales,” said

Amanda Sims, manager for the WI rail project. Lewis Brencher, Project Manager for Arriva Trains Wales, said:“Harlech WI seemed the ideal group to create the exhibit because they have done such sterling work at Harlech station which was named Best Unstaffed Station in Wales by the Keep Wales Tidy campaign. “The exhibit will reflect our partnership with local groups under the Station Adopter scheme.” ASPECT Summer 2011

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(That’s ‘Proud to have you on board’ in Mandarin) By Human Resources Director LYNNE MILLIGAN

Smart new uniform responds to staff feedback I AM delighted that our uniform project is about to go live and I would like to thank the various teams for their vital contribution. The wearer triallers gave us extremely helpful feedback after volunteering to put the clothes through their paces. Team organisers did a fantastic job in making sure that order forms were completed and returned to the supplier company and they will continue to support the distribution of uniform when it arrives from the supplier. Community Affairs Manager Geraint Morgan organised photography and worked with me on updating the personal presentation booklet. From original concept to final delivery, the project steering group worked with me every step of the way and I would like to say an especially big thank you to Chris Wilcox and Maria Preece in Procurement who were tireless in their attention to detail at every stage of the project. In this issue of Aspect you will read about our most recent Health and Wellbeing event at Canton Depot (see back page). The session was extremely well attended and produced very positive feedback. We plan to run more events this year, so please look out for details.

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ASPECT Summer 2011

Driver Luke Doutch is now widening his linguistic skills by studying written Mandarin.

A nice surprise for Chinese customers C

HINESE students travelling on the North Wales coast line are surprised to learn that one of Arriva Trains Wales’ staff speaks fluent Mandarin. Luke Doutch lived in China for three years after leaving University and he picked up the language during his stay. He met his wife-to-be while teaching English in Qingdao and has kept up his language skills since his return to Wales. The Holyhead-based Driver said: “Lots of students from China travel on our trains between

Chester and Llandudno Junction. If they have any problems I am always glad to help by speaking to them in their own language.” Luke is now widening his linguistic skills by studying written Chinese. “I hope to become more proficient all-round,” he said.“Of course I can keep up with the spoken word by talking to my wife. I have great memories of China and I am proud that my children will grow up speaking Chinese as well as Welsh and English.”


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A

BARRIE WILLACOTT FILM

CONTRACTS ★★★★★

Driver Stuart Ekstrom-Gabb is cast as the football manager in Conductor Barrie Willacott’s film.

I

T’S a tale of fast cars, gangsters and a footballer’s fall from grace… and it’s been dreamed up by amateur movie maker Barrie Willacott. The Cardiff Conductor’s short film, entitled Contracts, tells a gritty tale set in South Wales and the Borders and is the fulfilment of a long-held ambition. Barrie always wanted to write and direct a film but he struggled to find an attention-grabbing story line. Then he learned that a friend was once on the point of becoming a professional footballer and he took his experience as his jumping-off point. Soon afterwards he had another brainwave while he was bringing back empty stock from Ebbw Vale. “The friend’s experience gave me the idea for a footballer who didn’t quite make it, and then I hit on the idea of someone being accidentally involved in a fatal accident,” he said.

FAST CARS, GANGSTERS, A FOOTBALLER... AND HIS WAG

Staff play lead roles in gritty

amateur movie “I put the two together and that formed the basis of my script. I filmed the footballer at Hereford United football ground where the manager is dumping him on the scrapheap after nine loyal years at the club. “After that he is involved in a hit and run, killing a member of a notorious crime family, and he is sucked into the criminal underworld.” Four Arriva Trains Wales staff are members of Barrie’s cast. Stuart Ekstrom-Gabb, Cardiff Driver, plays the football manager, Steve

Premier League footballer Mainline Conductor Carl Manley plays a by Nikki Delve. ed play , Wag and ri – complete with Ferra

Jones, Revenue Clerk, plays Mr Big, Roger Fowler, Mainline Conductor, plays a gangster’s henchman, and Mainline Conductor Carl Manley is a Premier League footballer in a Ferrari. Locations in the film include Earlswood social club in Rumney, Cardiff, where Barrie’s wife and Mainline Conductor Liz Willacott is arranging a charity screening on July 10 in aid of the Alzheimers Society. The movie, filmed by Barrie on a Sony Camcorder, comes complete with a WAG played by Nikki Delve.

Revenue Officer Steve Jones, right, takes on the role of “Mr Big” and Mainline Conductor Roger Fowler plays a gangster’s henchman.

Driver makes historical film about 1911 rail disaster CHRIS James is a keen fan of historical documentaries – so he decided to make one himself. The Cardiff driver was especially motivated to make his eight-minute film about the Hopkinstown rail

disaster since he grew up there.This year marks the 100th anniversary of the tragedy, which happened when a passenger train collided with a stationary coal train near Pontypridd causing the loss of 11 lives.

Chris, who researched widely for the film, which shows him talking trackside about the disaster, said:“My grandfather told me the details of what happened and it seemed fitting that I should record it on film.” ASPECT Summer 2011

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Key Vision and values underpin long-term objectives

Youngsters get chance to ‘drive’ simulator A group of pupils from Cantonian High School in Cardiff have been given the opportunity to “drive” trains on the Arriva Trains Wales simulator. The exercise formed part of a visit themed around life skills and railway safety, which also included advice from British Transport Police officers. The pupils, all of whom have been diagnosed with Autism or Aspergers, received tips on how to read timetables, who to ask and how to stay safe. Debbie Oliver, a member of staff at the school, said: “The visit contributed to the pupils’ Personal and Social Education curriculum in the school. We requested the visit because we had identified that the pupils needed more experience of travelling on public transport. “They had no idea how to access a train timetable, where the stations were, or even how to ask a conductor for a return ticket.” The pupils, who also watched an educational video during their visit, have written letters of thanks to the Driver Training Centre staff.

By Human Resources Director LYNNE MILLIGAN

Commercial Director Mike Bagshaw cuts a ribbon to officially launch the first refurbished Class 158 watched by the Mayor of Aberystwyth Samantha Hearne and Mark Williams, MP for Ceredigion.

Head of Engineering Matthew Prosser, left, and Engineering Developments Manager Richard Pierce give 158 840 a final check before its unveiling.

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ASPECT Summer 2011

Triple fillip for delivery of

best in class service A

New upholstery and extended leg room are features of the seats on the refurbished Class 158s.

SERIES of fleet and customer service enhancement initiatives is strengthening the Arriva Trains Wales’ vision of becoming “Europe’s best in class train operator”. New uniforms, which are smarter and give a more professional look, are set to be worn by station staff, conductors and traincrew from June 27. Meanwhile the first results of the multi-million pound upgrade of the Class 158 fleet are being seen with the introduction of newly-refurbished units on to the network. At the same time a second express train with reduced journey times has been launched between Holyhead, Wrexham and Cardiff.

Extensive trials

Timetable improved THE new May timetable includes a number of improvements to services including faster journey times between south Wales and Manchester, improved connections and more services at some stations. Please visit the website for full details.

The exteriors of the Class 158 fleet have been repainted in the new livery.

Charcoal grey suiting of the new uniforms contrasts against the colours in the shirts, cravats and ties.

These initiatives form part of a package of improvement aimed at staff, passengers and stakeholders and are aligned to the company’s vision and values. The new uniforms, based on charcoal grey suiting with contrasting accent colours in shirts, cravats and ties, are being rolled out after extensive trials. Volunteers who participated in the wearer trials gave the designers detailed feedback on

comfort, fit and style. The distinct change from a casual to smart form reflects the views of staff expressed in the employee survey that they wanted to feel smart, comfortable and wear their uniform with pride. Uniform packs are now starting to arrive, allowing distribution for the “go live” date on June 27, from which time the new uniform should be worn.

Improved stations The first of the refurbished Class 158 trains was re-introduced on April 15 in time for Easter, leaving Aberystwyth station at 0930 en route to Birmingham International. The revamped units – with the exteriors fully repainted in new livery – offer passengers greater comfort with new upholstering, extended leg room, additional space for wheelchairs, improved cycle and luggage storage space and better toilet facilities. Meanwhile, the National Stations Improvement Programme (NSIP) is improving facilities at stations across the network. More than £40m will have been spent at Arriva Trains Wales’ stations by the end of the project in 2014 including significant improvements at Carmarthen,

The new stylish uniform is a move away from the previous casual issue.

Shrewsbury, Chester, Cardiff Central and Swansea. Many smaller unstaffed stations are benefiting from the installation of new customer information

screens and shelters while further projects are proposed, subject to funding, at Rhyl, Llandudno, Colwyn Bay, Aberystwyth, Neath and Port Talbot.

OUR company’s long-term vision is “to be Europe’s bestin-class operator” and underpinning this vision is a set of values that will help us achieve it. These are: ● Safety is always our first priority. ● Improving customer satisfaction in every element of our service. ● Enthusiastic staff doing the job well. ● Deliver what we promise to our stakeholders. ● Using our resources wisely. Each one of us will play a part in achieving our vision and values and, in order to bring them to life, a team has been formed with the objective of developing ways that will: ● Promote excellence demonstrated by colleagues in the workplace. ● Help us understand how those values can best be displayed in our day to day operations. ● Help us understand their relevance and value. We recognise that improved service delivery will help us grow our customer base by working together and achieving improvements in the quality, cost and delivery of our service. All of us, doing the job well, is key to us achieving our vision of “being best in class”. There will be a communications plan that will keep everyone informed on the project’s progress including the initiatives, achievements and activities that are developed. Please look out for them.

Customers give refurbished trains the thumbs up – page 9 >>> Win £50 M&S voucher in our ‘vision and values’ wordsearch – page 11 >>> ASPECT Summer 2011

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Key Vision and values underpin long-term objectives

Youngsters get chance to ‘drive’ simulator A group of pupils from Cantonian High School in Cardiff have been given the opportunity to “drive” trains on the Arriva Trains Wales simulator. The exercise formed part of a visit themed around life skills and railway safety, which also included advice from British Transport Police officers. The pupils, all of whom have been diagnosed with Autism or Aspergers, received tips on how to read timetables, who to ask and how to stay safe. Debbie Oliver, a member of staff at the school, said: “The visit contributed to the pupils’ Personal and Social Education curriculum in the school. We requested the visit because we had identified that the pupils needed more experience of travelling on public transport. “They had no idea how to access a train timetable, where the stations were, or even how to ask a conductor for a return ticket.” The pupils, who also watched an educational video during their visit, have written letters of thanks to the Driver Training Centre staff.

By Human Resources Director LYNNE MILLIGAN

Commercial Director Mike Bagshaw cuts a ribbon to officially launch the first refurbished Class 158 watched by the Mayor of Aberystwyth Samantha Hearne and Mark Williams, MP for Ceredigion.

Head of Engineering Matthew Prosser, left, and Engineering Developments Manager Richard Pierce give 158 840 a final check before its unveiling.

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ASPECT Summer 2011

Triple fillip for delivery of

best in class service A

New upholstery and extended leg room are features of the seats on the refurbished Class 158s.

SERIES of fleet and customer service enhancement initiatives is strengthening the Arriva Trains Wales’ vision of becoming “Europe’s best in class train operator”. New uniforms, which are smarter and give a more professional look, are set to be worn by station staff, conductors and traincrew from June 27. Meanwhile the first results of the multi-million pound upgrade of the Class 158 fleet are being seen with the introduction of newly-refurbished units on to the network. At the same time a second express train with reduced journey times has been launched between Holyhead, Wrexham and Cardiff.

Extensive trials

Timetable improved THE new May timetable includes a number of improvements to services including faster journey times between south Wales and Manchester, improved connections and more services at some stations. Please visit the website for full details.

The exteriors of the Class 158 fleet have been repainted in the new livery.

Charcoal grey suiting of the new uniforms contrasts against the colours in the shirts, cravats and ties.

These initiatives form part of a package of improvement aimed at staff, passengers and stakeholders and are aligned to the company’s vision and values. The new uniforms, based on charcoal grey suiting with contrasting accent colours in shirts, cravats and ties, are being rolled out after extensive trials. Volunteers who participated in the wearer trials gave the designers detailed feedback on

comfort, fit and style. The distinct change from a casual to smart form reflects the views of staff expressed in the employee survey that they wanted to feel smart, comfortable and wear their uniform with pride. Uniform packs are now starting to arrive, allowing distribution for the “go live” date on June 27, from which time the new uniform should be worn.

Improved stations The first of the refurbished Class 158 trains was re-introduced on April 15 in time for Easter, leaving Aberystwyth station at 0930 en route to Birmingham International. The revamped units – with the exteriors fully repainted in new livery – offer passengers greater comfort with new upholstering, extended leg room, additional space for wheelchairs, improved cycle and luggage storage space and better toilet facilities. Meanwhile, the National Stations Improvement Programme (NSIP) is improving facilities at stations across the network. More than £40m will have been spent at Arriva Trains Wales’ stations by the end of the project in 2014 including significant improvements at Carmarthen,

The new stylish uniform is a move away from the previous casual issue.

Shrewsbury, Chester, Cardiff Central and Swansea. Many smaller unstaffed stations are benefiting from the installation of new customer information

screens and shelters while further projects are proposed, subject to funding, at Rhyl, Llandudno, Colwyn Bay, Aberystwyth, Neath and Port Talbot.

OUR company’s long-term vision is “to be Europe’s bestin-class operator” and underpinning this vision is a set of values that will help us achieve it. These are: ● Safety is always our first priority. ● Improving customer satisfaction in every element of our service. ● Enthusiastic staff doing the job well. ● Deliver what we promise to our stakeholders. ● Using our resources wisely. Each one of us will play a part in achieving our vision and values and, in order to bring them to life, a team has been formed with the objective of developing ways that will: ● Promote excellence demonstrated by colleagues in the workplace. ● Help us understand how those values can best be displayed in our day to day operations. ● Help us understand their relevance and value. We recognise that improved service delivery will help us grow our customer base by working together and achieving improvements in the quality, cost and delivery of our service. All of us, doing the job well, is key to us achieving our vision of “being best in class”. There will be a communications plan that will keep everyone informed on the project’s progress including the initiatives, achievements and activities that are developed. Please look out for them.

Customers give refurbished trains the thumbs up – page 9 >>> Win £50 M&S voucher in our ‘vision and values’ wordsearch – page 11 >>> ASPECT Summer 2011

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S A F E T Y

matters By Operations and Safety Director Peter Leppard

Water harvesting is up and running THE Rain Water Harvesting scheme at Canton Depot is now fully operational. We believe the 320,000 litre storage system to be one of the largest above-ground installations in the UK. In line with the 2011 Safety and Environmental Plan, the scheme will be monitored throughout the year to see whether it is delivering the anticipated benefits in reducing reliance on mains water services. The project involves collecting rainwater from the Train Maintenance shed roof, filtering it and UV sterilising it before it is used to fill the rolling stock toilet cisterns from which the onboard toilets are flushed. A report will examine recommendations for expanding the scheme to other areas of the business.

Feedback is valuable FOLLOWING the introduction of ERTMS (the new cab-signalling system) to the Pwllheli – Harlech section of the Cambrian Line, the scheme has now been extended to the whole of the Cambrian route. The first passenger trains ran in service following system commissioning on March 26. I would like to express my continued thanks to all those who have made the transition from the old RETB signalling system as smooth as possible. I also want to ask everybody involved in the operation and maintenance of ERTMS to continue to give us feedback on your experiences. This will help us and your colleagues to continue to gain valuable knowledge regarding the use of this new technology.

Aims of workshops AS part of our 2011 Safety Plan we have committed to having two workshops for our safety representatives (one north, one south) with the aims of: ● Promoting communications between safety representatives and front line managers. ● Improving understanding of safety representatives’ responsibilities, reporting protocols and risk prioritisation. ● Reviewing the effectiveness of the current safety reps meeting process. ● Engaging safety representatives in hazard identification and reporting.

Continue to be vigilant IN the light of recent incidents in the geo-political arena, we ask all members of staff to continue to be vigilant.

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ASPECT Summer 2011

Driver Instructor Paul Davidson with two of his birdlife paintings.

Artist Paul has

eye for detail T

HE richly-varied birdlife of Anglesey has been caught on canvas by skilled painter Paul Davidson. The Holyhead Driver Instructor works painstakingly from photographs, in oils and watercolour, to capture every small detail. His rare subjects range from firecrests to peregrines and marsh harriers. Paul makes trips to the scenic forested area near Church Bay to gather material for his works. “Anglesey is especially rich in bird life

and I think I must have painted every British species as well as a few foreign ones,” he said.“Painting is a good way of capturing a bird which I may have spotted for only a fleeting moment in real life.” Paul, who sold 30 paintings at an exhibition in a gallery in Bangor some years ago, occasionally paints portraits. He is especially proud of a special commission for a relative who asked him to capture a likeness of her daughter from a photograph after she sadly died at the age of 19.

Hollie Secures Gold in Dubai SIXTEEN year old Paralympic athlete Hollie Arnold from Llanbradach has enjoyed further success by winning a gold medal at the 2011 IWAS World Junior Games in Dubai. Hollie is supported with her training needs by Arriva Trains Wales. In January, she won a bronze medal in Christchurch, New Zealand and is looking forward to the Olympics in London 2012.


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GWYNETH EDWARDS:

SUZANNE DE HEARN:

KARL GREENBERG:

RUTH HAYDEN:

“Extra legroom has made my journey extremely comfortable.”

“Particularly impressed by extra storage space.”

“Refurbishers have done a pretty neat job.”

“Brilliant – the carpets and seats are now pristine.”

Customers give Class 158s

the thumbs-up C

USTOMERS travelling on one of Arriva Trains Wales’ refurbished Class 158 trains between Aberystwyth and Birmingham were unanimous in giving a thumbs-up to the upgrade. Gwyneth Edwards, aged 51, who was travelling from Fairbourne en route to her home in Southampton, was especially positive about the added legroom and the newly-upholstered seats. “I have a bad back and I am finding the seating far better than it used to be,” she said. “The extra legroom and the comfortable seat have made this part of my journey extremely comfortable – I am well pleased. “I will make use of the new power points for charging my mobile phone.” Suzanne de Hearn, aged 66, of Telford, was travelling with a party of 16 schoolchildren on a day out. She said:“I am particularly impressed by the extra storage space and the userfriendly look of the vestibule. In the past it’s been disconcerting to stand by the exit doors. One of the youngsters in my group has made use of one of the cycle racks.” Karl Greenberg, aged 52, of Barmouth, reckoned the refurbishers had done “a pretty neat job.” He added:“The vestibule area is bigger and

GILBERT HUMPHRIES: “Bigger, lighter vestibules improve the journey experience.”

MICAIAH JONES:

VERONICA JONES:

“I really like this train.”

“Toilets are nice and clean.”

brighter. The new carpets have really lifted the appearance of the carriages. My overall travelling experience with Arriva Trains Wales has been excellent.” Veronica Jones, aged 54, a cleaner from Abersoch, was travelling with her 12-year-old son Micaiah.“I’m very impressed with the extra space in the vestibules, and the toilets are nice and clean,” she said.“My only criticism is that the passenger information system doesn’t seem to be working.” Michaiah added:“I really like this train. It’s comfortable. But we can’t get our power plug to work.”

Ruth Hayden, aged 52, from Birmingham, said Arriva Trains Wales had taken a “leap forward” with their Class 158 makeover. Ruth said:“Compared to the shabby look of the old 158s, this is brilliant. We’re impressed with the carpets and seats which are now pristine. “The vestibule is better and we will definitely make use of the power plugs in the future.” Pam Davies, aged 31, of Telford, said:“The overall furnishings in the interior look great. The old vestibules used to be smaller and it was awkward. People will find things a lot easier if they have children with them.”

PAM DAVIES: “The overall furnishings in the interior look great.” Gilbert Humphries, aged 72, of Birmingham, said:“The power points will be of great use to me if I want to use my laptop on journeys. The bigger, lighter vestibules improve the journey experience.” ASPECT Summer 2011

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five

minutes with Mark Iliffe Mark, aged 59, is the Station Operator at Llandaf station in Cardiff. He lives in Whitchurch with his daughter, about five minutes’ walk away from his workplace. What are you doing at the moment? My biggest challenge at the moment is getting across to my customers that they can obtain a full range of rail products at Llandaf now that a STAR ticket machine has been installed. This allows me to give a much quicker and more efficient service to the 400,000 passengers that use the station every year. What is the best aspect of your job? I have been at Llandaf for three years now and the best aspect is the improvements that have been made to enable me to provide a better service. When I started, the ticket office was literally a wooden box with an Avantix ticket machine. Now I have a purpose-built brick ticket office with all the facilities including water and a toilet. Customers from other parts of the city are using my ticket office and taking advantage of the large free car park at the station. What’s the strangest thing that has happened to you in work? I often chat on the train to our local transport lecturer and advisor to the Welsh Assembly Government Professor Stuart Cole, and recently recommended him to visit Cuba with his family. On his way to the airport he and his wife bought their tickets by card at my ticket office. They left on the train and a few moments later another customer noticed they had left their card in the pin machine which is outside the window and out of my sight. I got a message

to the train on which they were travelling, and sent the card on the next train. Fortunately travellers and card were reunited at Queen Street station and I am now waiting with baited breath to see whether the Professor enjoyed the holiday he took at my suggestion. How do you relax? I swim on a regular basis, covering about five miles a week, and I enjoy travelling. Recent destinations include Goa, Cuba and Malta – I am trying to catch up on all the holidays I missed while bringing up my children over the past 30 years. Which famous people alive or dead would you invite to a dinner party? A good mix of musicians to provide entertainment and several cricketers to talk with about my favourite sport.

Favourite films/CDs?

Mark Iliffe pictured at Llandaf station.

I like action films but for a family occasion I would choose Lord of the Rings and a Harry Potter movie. REM is my favourite band. Your favourite place in the world? The sights in the Kruger Park in South Africa are unforgettable. What would you like to be doing in five years’ time? Hopefully still working at Llandaf and still travelling the world. Best bit of advice you have ever been given? At the start of my career as a police officer I was advised: do not believe anything you are told without proof. The motto stood me in good stead throughout my 30 years’ service.

Kicking the habit pays for couple’s narrow boat hobby PAUL Stern has discovered that he and his wife can afford to run a narrow boat on the savings they have made through giving up smoking. The IT Network and Security Manager kicked the habit after attending a Health and Wellbeing open day. He said:“Lorraine and I bought the 50-foot boat called Bronwen from Cambrian Cruisers last year.

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ASPECT Summer 2011

“The costs were initially a little scary but we have found that the £3,500 per year we are saving by giving up the habit more than covers the annual running costs.” They will use their craft – pictured at her mooring at

Pencelli Marina in the heart of the Brecon Beacons National Park – for family

getaways with their 11-year-old son and as a base to explore.


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A yellow day at the office B

IG-HEARTED staff at Chester ticket office raised £435 during the Marie Curie Cancer Care fund-raising month. Supporting the charity’s Great Daffodil Appeal, they wore yellow-themed clothes for two days, sold daffodil pin badges throughout March and baked yellow cakes. The fundraisers wore a variety of eye-catching clothes on a yellow theme, with

Sandra Clarke the star of the show in her yellow boa with yellow helium balloons attached. Lorna Elliott improvised, using two of the pin badges as makeshift earrings. Supervisor Linda Williams, who organised the charity appeal on the station, said:“Thanks to everyone who supported our appeal – we had a great response.

“The staff pulled out all the stops over an extended period to show their backing for a very worthy cause. The total raised included £55 from a cake and sausage roll sale.” ● Pictured left to right are Andy Layden, Teena Hayes, David Davies, Lorna Elliott, Sandra Clarke, Linda Williams, Danny Kay and Geoff Chandler – all ticket office staff.

WIN £50 M&S voucher vision and values wordsearch TAKING its lead from our feature about Vision and Values on the centre pages, our wordsearch in this issue is on the theme of work-related performance. A £50 Marks & Spencer voucher is on offer for the first person whose name is drawn out of the hat. Entries should be no later than July 29. The competition is open to Arriva Trains Wales employees only.

BEST HELP NEAT ROLE IDEAS PRIDE SMART HEALTH

MANAGE SAFETY TIMELY VALUES VISION DEVELOP IMPRESS RESPECT SERVICE

Simply ring the words in the grid, cut it out and send it with your name, address and phone number to: Geraint Morgan, Community Affairs Manager, Arriva Trains Wales, St Mary’s House, 47 Penarth Road, Cardiff CF10 5DJ. ● The winner of the previous competition was Donna Soper, a Driver Instructor in Cardiff.

UNIFORM FEEDBACK CUSTOMERS DRESS CODE RESOURCES ENTHUSIASM COMMUNICATE PROFESSIONAL RESPONSIBILITY

V I S I O N M S A I S U H T N E

I A E S A X A R C M C M E G O R

S E L M E T N E O P O I L A E E

C D F U N F A R O R M T O S W S

U O Q K E A G L M E M H P O E O

S C U C M S E S U S U O E R X U

T S L A I V S I M S N E V L I R

O S A B E S T A D S I I J U P C

M E I D C H R P I E C Z E V O E

E R V E H T T B A E A D E Y F S

R D O E W E I L C H T S F T A T

S T I F O L D R A T E B R E M E

O Y A T I M E L Y E R A C F E D

N E A T O N V E T I H K O A Y I

I R Y I R L U P A T C E P S E R

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LOOKING FORWARD TO THE NEW SEASON: the Arriva Trains Wales Football Club squad.

New talent boost

for soccer team T

HE Arriva Trains Wales Football Club is going from strength to strength following a substitution of new talent. The club, which competes in the Lazarou Sunday League in South Wales, has boosted its chances by inviting relatives of employees to join. As a result the team has challenged for the leadership of Division Three and reached the final of the cup. Steve Mace, Cardiff Mainline

Driver and club secretary, said: “This season, as the side was ageing, it was decided to allow relatives to play. The new impetus supplied by the introduction of younger players is just what we needed.” The “Railmen,” as they are known, have competed in the Sunday League for seven years, winning a number of trophies on the way. The team, whose home ground is Llanidloes Park in Gabalfa, has twice won the

national five-a-side competition at the Railsport Games. Valleys Conductor Darren Nippers captains the side, top scorer is Valleys Driver Mike Joyce, the star player is Treherbert Driver Dean Radford. They are managed by Instructor Driver Steve Willis. Steve added:“Anyone wishing to follow our progress can do so via the company’s intranet or through our website at www.clubwebsite.co.uk/atwfc.”

Staff wellbeing campaign powers on A FURTHER Health and Wellbeing event was held at Canton Depot, supported by PTH Occupational Health, Specsavers, Boots, British Heart Foundation, WorkStrong, Healthshield and Stop Smoking Wales. A chartered physiotherapist advised staff on back, neck and leg pains and a number of employees had a carbon monoxide reading together with advice on smoking cessation. As part of the Healthy Living drive staff and their families can enjoy a deal which gives them a £20 discount off glasses from the Specsavers range if you spend £99 or more with them (a voucher is enclosed with this issue of Aspect). You can also request a further two vouchers per employee per annum by emailing healthyliving@arrivatw.co.uk If you would like us to secure a company

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discount at council leisure facilities please email the same address. For further details on Specsavers and leisure centres see the company intranet. Send us your suggestions about what you would like included in Health and Wellbeing events in 2011 to be in with the chance of winning an iPod – again to the same email address.

Cycle trek for charities MARK Hirst, Resource Controller based at the Control Centre, has cycled across the Pennines for charity. Leaving from Southport, he made the arduous journey via the Transpennine Trail to Hornsea, raising money for the MSH Foundation to be split between Cancer Research UK and Unicef.

New café at Bridgend A BRAND new café has opened at Bridgend station. Cafexpress is open from 0600 to 1900 and offers passengers a range of freshly made food, hot and cold drinks and a good selection of newspapers and magazines.

Have you got news for us? IF you have a story for Aspect please contact Community Affairs Manager Geraint Morgan on 02920-720521. You can also contact him via email: geraint.morgan@ arrivatw.co.uk


Aspect Summer 2011