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    25 April, 2007

    Violence on trains

    The Echo had this depressing splash yesterday about the behaviour of gangs of yobs at Ystrad Rhondda station who prevented a train leaving the station at the end of March. I have known about this for a couple of weeks -Arriva have sent me footage of the incident. Rightly we now have legislation in place which means that attacks on railway workers are treated the same as attacks on emergency services workers.

    I have spent a lot of my time over the past couple of years campaigning for better train services for my constituents. Labour's Assembly Government has invested additional money in recruiting more British Transport Police, some of whom cover the Valleys Lines from Pontypridd. But services will suffer if staff are unwilling to operate trains at certain times of day or at certain stations. Ystrad Rhondda station has seen problems from some time, and these are not just related to the trains but also to the area round the station. It will require a concerted police presence for some time and I hope that those involved in the incidents get properly punished.

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    Promoted by Leighton Andrews AM, National Assembly for Wales, Cardiff CF99 1NA.

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