The Heart of Wales: A Credit to Community Rail


Following hot on the heels of the Cambrian Line, the Heart of Wales Development Company has become just the second in the UK to receive the new quality benchmark.

Accreditation is managed by the Association of Community Rail Partnerships (ACoRP) on behalf of the Department for Transport.

Looking at all aspects of the partnership from its policies and procedures to its future business plan and how it invests its funding from Transport for Wales, accreditation shows that the Development Company is running the Community Rail Partnership as a responsible organisation.

The partnership has delivered a number of key achievements in promoting the line over recent years, notably the creation of the Heart of Wales walking train, the 150th celebrations and the development of the cafe at Llandovery station.

“It's fantastic news for us to have that benchmark of quality,” said Lisa Denison, Development Manager for the Partnership.

“It will allow us to bid for  ACORP funding and also means that we have a stronger voice when working with rail partners to influence service delivery changes such as timetabling, fares or station development.

“Rail tourism is a big growth area for us. For example we are seeing a large growth in passengers and enquiries since the launch of the final section of the walking trail.

“We are developing new plans, linking the line to local economic regeneration plans and sustainable transport development. We have an important role to play in local communities from supporting employment projects to creating enterprise and linking businesses across a wide geographic area and accreditation will hopefully strengthen our voice at both a local and national level.”

The partnership has been running for a number of years and formalised it’s structure as a Development Company, over 10 years ago around a community bid to save and renovate the station building at Llandovery. Once achieved, the building was leased to the Friends of Llandovery station who have run a cafe there since it reopened in 2011.

Since then it has also created a community hub building in Llandeilo and developed the 150th anniversary celebrations of the line that saw HRH Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall travel on the line last year.


Transport for Wales is a not for profit company, wholly owned by the Welsh Government.

Transport for Wales exists to drive forward the Welsh Government’s vision of a high quality, safe, integrated, affordable and accessible transport network that the people of Wales are proud of. Transport for Wales is key to delivering the Welsh Government’s key themes as set out in Prosperity for All: The National Strategy.

For Wales and its people to thrive, we need to be connected – to one another, to the services we need and to open up new opportunities. Their work focuses on making these connections happen – by planning, commissioning and managing efficient transport networks and by drawing on the very best skills from across industry, government and society.

Transport for Wales are creating a transport network fit for the future that contributes to the long-term sustainability of Wales and those communities connected to us.


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