Sustainable Development Plan 2022-27

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Sustainable Development Plan 2022-27

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James Price
Chief Executive Officer
Transport for Wales

“We’re creating a transport network that will transform and sustain Welsh communities, environments and culture.

At Transport for Wales, we know travel must be made more sustainable. We need more low-carbon public transport. We need more people to be able to walk, wheel and cycle to school and work safely. We need a betterintegrated transport network so that a single ticket can be used across multiple buses and trains.

But sustainable development is about far more than greener transport.

As laid out in the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015, sustainable development is ‘the process of improving the economic, social, environmental and cultural well-being of Wales by taking action’.

At TfW, our sustainable action includes encouraging people to learn and speak Welsh, preserving our industrial heritage, improving biodiversity, ensuring tourists can visit our national parks by public transport and upskilling our workers.

For us, sustainability is about improving people’s everyday lives.

This report captures that broad sweep of our sustainable development projects and goals. It carries us from the foothills of Snowdonia to our state-of-the-art offices in Pontypridd. 

It will help us deliver the ambitious targets the Welsh Government have set for a shift in behaviour to more sustainable transport use. 

Ultimately, we’re creating a transport network that will transform and sustain Welsh communities, environments and culture.


Leyton Powell
Director for Safety, Sustainability and Risk
Transport for Wales

“Our aspiration is, and always will be, that transport will positively contribute to our communities, our economy and our environment.

We’re proud of the initiatives we’ve delivered since our first Sustainable Development Plan was published in 2019. We’re creating a safer, more connected and more sustainable transport network. 

There is still a lot of work to be done.

In this plan, we’ve set out how we’ll continue to shape our transport, procurement and delivery networks in a way that’s fit for future generations.

It is integrated with our Business Plan objectives, the five-year Corporate Strategy and Llwyber Newydd: The Wales Transport Strategy. 

We’re supporting the Welsh Government’s 2050 net zero targets and the target for the public sector in Wales to be collectively net zero by 2030. We’ll achieve this by working with the UK and Welsh governments to further decarbonise our services.

We cannot transform transport alone. We rely on the work and input of our people, communities, supply chain and customers. We’re working with local authorities to encourage people to walk, wheel and cycle more.

In collaboration with our partners and communities, we’ll continue to improve the quality of our services.

In five years, we want sustainable transport to be the first choice for people in Wales. Our aspiration is, and always will be, that transport will positively contribute to our communities, our economy and our environment.



At Transport for Wales (TfW), we’re committed to delivering an accessible, sustainable and efficient multi-modal transport network. 

Our vision for a sustainable transport network means that we need to work closely with the communities we serve. We’re continuing to develop strong partnerships within the Welsh Government, Local Authorities and our communities to build what our communities need and deserve from public transport.

This Sustainable Development Plan outlines our aims and objectives to bring change to our travel behaviours in Wales over the next five years.

Since we published our first Sustainable Development Plan in 2019, we’ve seen changes throughout TfW, Wales and the world.

As our organisation has grown we’ve gained more expertise and have become more ambitious in how we meet our commitments and we’re developing our reputation as a leader in sustainability in Wales. 

We keep the health, safety and well-being of our colleagues, communities and environment at the forefront of our plans so that our transport network is fit for future generations.

We’re measuring our impacts and progress in our objectives through the Wales Transport Strategy: Monitoring Measures. We’ll publish an annual update detailing our progress against the objectives laid out in this plan.


Supporting plans and strategies

Our Sustainable Development Plan is aligned to the goals set out in the Wales Transport Strategy and the National Transport Delivery Plan.

It’s supported by several strategies across the organisation and will help guide the development of future plans and strategies within TfW.

Together these strategies offer a comprehensive route to delivering our sustainable development and organisational goals.

The Welsh Government Llwyber Newydd: The Wales Transport Strategy
The National Transport Delivery Plan

Transport for Wales

*Published strategy
**In progress

Sustainable Development Plan
Action Plan *
Equality Plan and 
Objectives *
and Engagement 
Strategy *
Business Plan
Climate adaptation 
and resilience plan **
Skills and 
Strategy **
Corporate Health 
Strategy **
Active Travel 
Strategy **
Tourism Strategy **
Heritage Action 
Plan **



Our Sustainable Development Plan is influenced by a wide range of relevant legislation and policies which guide us in achieving our goals, including:

(Wales) Act 2016
Well-being future 
(Wales) Act 2015
Social Partnership and 
Public Procurement 
(Wales) Bill 2022
The Sustainable 
Development Global 
Goals 2015
The Equality Act 2010 
(Statutory Duties) 
(Wales) Regulations 2011
Welsh Language (Wales) 
Measure 2011


Promoting sustainable travel and reducing the need for private car use

We’re making travelling by public transport easier and more accessible for everyone across Wales and the borders. By building more capability and reliability into our network and operations, we want to make public transport an attractive travel option.

We’re integrating our bus and rail networks, making our active travel routes safer and increasing the reliability of our services.

We can create a more sustainable Wales by increasing the capability of our current networks and create opportunities to encourage more sustainable, lower emission transport choices.


We’re supporting a modal shift away from private car use and towards more sustainable transport options.

Increasing the capability for everyone to use sustainable transport.

We’ll make our services easier to use by:

  • Working with the Welsh Government to better support those involved in the development and delivery of active travel projects through training programmes and expert advice.
  • Ensuring our workforce is diverse so that we’re representative of Wales.
  • Providing consistent and accurate travel information to ensure integrated journeys are seamless, intuitive and make sustainable transport the mode of choice over the car for most journeys.
  • Introducing travel planning intervention at household, workplace and education levels, delivered in partnership with allied organisations.
  • Continuing to develop our staff with customer-focused and Welsh language training programmes.


Creating opportunities to make sustainable transport choices.

We’ll encourage uptake of active travel by:

  • Working with Welsh Government and local authorities to deliver enhanced active travel infrastructure.
  • Promoting better integration between active travel and public transport through enhanced facilities and new and improved active travel routes.
  • Integrating the public transport network, ensuring the TfW rail network, timetables, journey planning, retailing and ticketing link with other modes throughout Wales.


We’ll ensure we offer the most inclusive and accessible options for end-to-end journeys in line with the Public Sector Equality Duty and Accessibility Duty by:

  • Working with Welsh Government to create a fair fare scheme across Wales.
  • Developing the Pay-As-You-Go scheme, including integrated and contactless rail and bus ticketing and multijourney fare capping.
  • Introducing interactive, informative, accessible and bilingual smart technology at bus stops.


We’ll increase the connectivity of rural areas by:

  • Expanding demand-responsive services such as fflecsi in areas where they’ll deliver greatest benefit.
  • Integrating our long-distance bus network TrawsCymru with other services.
  • Expanding our specialised services which are dedicated to moving people around unique areas of interest.


Sherpa’r Wyddfa

Sherpa’r Wyddfa was offficially launched 8 July 2022 at Nant Peris in Snowdonia National Park.

We worked in partnership with Gwynedd County Council to improve the former Snowdon Sherpa bus service. The newly branded Sherpa’r Wyddfa brings visitors and locals into the National Park and helps to ease road congestion.

Better frequency and connectivity are the key ingredients of the network overhaul. For example, the new network now provides an hourly service every day between tourist hotspots Betws-y-Coed and Caernarfon. This removed a previous requirement for passengers to change buses at Llanberis.

The new network also provides daily through journeys between Bangor and Pen-y-Pass at the foot of Snowdon (Yr Wyddfa).

Launched July 
22% increase 
in passengers 
numbers in 2022 
from the same 
period in 2019



Our Metro programmes will offer better opportunities multi modal travel, encouraging a shift away from private vehicles towards more sustainable modes of transport.


South Wales Metro

We’re working with the Welsh Government local authorities and private bus operators to deliver a cohesive network of multi modal routes across South Wales.


South West and Swansea Bay Metro

We’re working with local authorities and public transport operators to improve the speed and reliability of bus journeys and integrating the bus and rail networks.


South Wales Mainline

We’ve unidentified and are coordinating a long-term programme of investment in the South Wales Mainline, meeting the rail service capacity needs of the Metro programmes.


North Wales Metro

Our North Wales Metro Programme will transform the public transport and active travel network.

It’ll make it easier and faster to travel across North Wales and build better connections with the north west of England.


Metro Central

Multi-modal transport hubs that allows easy use and interchange of all modes of public transport at the heart of Cardiff.


Sustainable Transport Hierarchy

We’ll follow the Sustainable Transport Hierarchy when considering new infrastructure investments including:

  • Prioritising active travel, improving public transport and enhancing biodiversity.
  • Making the best use of existing infrastructure.
  • Coordinating works with our public transport Metro and local authority transport programmes , Active Travel Network Maps and delivery plan.
  • Consulting our Roads Review Panel.
Walking and Cycling
Public Transport
Emissions Vehicles
Other Private
Motor Vehicles


Providing motivation to make a shift away from private car use.

We’ll adapt our community engagement strategies to encourage the uptake of sustainable transport modes by:

  • Including more behavioural science within our Community Engagement projects.
  • Delivering an engagement plan with employers and public sector organisations to encourage sustainable commuting behaviours. 
  • Supporting project teams with behavioural insights interventions at each stage of the project.


We’ll develop a brand identity that builds trust in the network and encourages uptake of our services and other forms of sustainable transport by: 

  • Developing guidance, marketing and other tools to transform the image of walking, cycling and public transport.
  • Delivering a campaign to increase the use of rail for commuting and leisure.
  • Taking a more targeted approach in our communications.
  • Undertaking research to better understand the needs and motivations of our passengers.


We’ll increase reliability to build the confidence that services will be there when needed by:

  • Investing in vehicles, rolling stock and more resilient infrastructure.
  • Redesigning bus networks to create a fully integrated transport system.
  • Prioritising road space for people using sustainable transport.


Aim TfW Directorates Stakeholders Monitoring framework 
Making our services more accessible and 
easier to use and reflect the needs of our 
  • Transport planning and development 
  • Safety, sustainability and risk
  • Customer and culture
  • The Welsh Government 
  • Local Authorities
  • The people in Wales and the borders
    (through consultations)
S2, S3, S5, S6, S11, S12, S13, S14, S15, 
We’ll increase the uptake of active travel.
  • Transport planning and development
  • The Welsh Government 
  • Local Authorities
M1, M6

S1, S3, S4, S5, S21, S22
Ensure that we offer the most inclusive 
and accessible options for end-to-end 
  • Transport planning and development 
  • Customer and culture
  • Commercial 
  • The Welsh Government 
  • Local Authorities
  • Accessibility and inclusion panel 
  • The Wales and borders public
    (through consultations)

S1, S2, S3, S4, S5, S6, S11, S12 S13, 
S14, S14, S15, S18, S20
Improve transport options for people living 
in rural areas.
  • Transport planning and development
  • Local Authorities
  • Bus operators

M1, M6

S1, S2, S3, S5, S11, S12

Follow the Sustainable Transport Hierarchy 
for new infrastructure investments.
  • Transport planning and development
  • Commercial
  • Infrastructure 
  • The Welsh Government
  • Local Authorities
M1, M2, M6

S3, S4, S21, S22, S23
Adapt our communication and 
engagement strategies to encourage 
uptake of sustainable transport modes.
  • Customer and culture
  • Safety, sustainability and risk
  • Public sector organisations
  • Commercial organisations
  • Educational institutions

S2, S5, S6, S11, S12
Develop a brand identity that builds trust in 
the network.
  • Customer and culture
  • Local Authorities 
  • The people in Wales and the borders
    (through consultations)

S2, S6, S11, S12
Increase our service reliability.
  • Transport planning and development
  • Infrastructure
  • The Welsh Government 
  • Local Authorities
  • Bus operators
S9, S11, S16, S21, S22


A transport network that’s good for the people, places and environment of Wales.

People and places make Wales. We’re creating a transport system that brings communities together, enhances the villages, towns and cities where we live and contributes positively to the natural environment.

We’re building a transport network that contributes to a more equal and healthier Wales, that everyone has the confidence to use.


We’re building a network fit for the future by being:

Good for people and communities

We’ll ensure the interests of our local communities are at the heart of our decision making by:

  • Introducing an additional three Community Rail Partners by 30 April 2025, bringing the total number of partners to nine. 
  • We’ll reach out to third sector groups to increase confidence for people to travel by public transport through our Confidence to Travel programme.

We’ll improve station environments for the benefit of communities by: 

  • Having 90% of stations on our network adopted by 31 March 2024. 
  • Identifying and developing areas suitable for community gardens at and around stations. 
  • Identifying opportunities to utilise or refurbish disused space in and around stations. 
  • Working with potential and existing Station Adopter groups to enhance station areas. 

We’ll work to better understand and fulfil passenger motivations and needs by:

  • Developing our Customer First programmes and expanding them across our network. 
  • Growing our team of customer-facing ambassadors to include bus and improve the travel experience for passengers.

We’ll identify, manage and eliminate short, medium and long-term risks. Ensuring that our network is fit for now and the future.

Station adoption

Our ‘Adopt a Station’ scheme improves our links with local communities and customers living near unstaffed railway stations.

Stations play an important role in communities and are often the first thing people see when they arrive in a town.

We ask for adopters to report on matters such as litter, graffiti, vandalism, lighting, information help points, and timetable information. In return for their valued support, all our station adopters receive an annual travel voucher that can be used on any part of the UK rail network.

151 stations 
have been 
adopted so far
More than 
250 active 


We’ll improve our relationship with line-side neighbours on the Core Valleys Lines by:

  • Gathering feedback on our communications. 
  • Developing an improved approach to communication and engagement.


We’ll ensure communities are better informed about key projects such as the Core Valleys Line transformation and events within Wales by:

  • Holding community drop-in events and quarterly forums. 
  • Sharing our newsletters with organisational updates for our communities. 
  • Launching our Talking Transport tool kit to identify and address barriers that have been raised by the public. 
  • Delivering a new online Engagement and consultation platform to share key information about projects and their progress. 
  • Working with accessibility groups to ensure that we achieve their standards for accessible and inclusive engagement.


Good for the environment

We’ll reduce our impact on the environment by: 

  • Taking a repair first approach to refurbishments of facilities and stations.
  • Removing all single-use plastic from our services.
  • Implementing an initial trial of waste segregation at source with the intention of a wider roll-out by April 2024. 
  • Monitoring water usage and prevent leaks by installing water data loggers in all main water supplies.


We’ll deliver the objectives set out in the Biodiversity Action Plan and duties set out in Section 6 of the Environment (Wales) Act 2016 by:

  • Creating new native habitats at 50 railway stations in Wales. 
  • Enhancing community spaces and designing them with long-term management of native species. 
  • Enhancement and protection of our land assets through appropriate wildlife management. 
  • Incorporating and pioneering nature-based solutions and green infrastructure. 
  • Collaborating with local wildlife groups, charities and stakeholders.


We’ll develop an emissions pathway for TfW’s direct operations by:

  • Auditing sites to better understand the applicability of new technologies and opportunities for energy efficiency measures. 
  • Trialling renewable technologies on our infrastructure with the intention of a wider roll-out. 
  • Creating a robust process for the measurement and management of TfW’s corporate emissions. 
  • Developing a framework for the assessment and management of whole life carbon emissions from design to operation. 

We’ll facilitate the decarbonisation of the transport sector in Wales to enable zero-emissions travel by:

  • Replacing 50% of the highest emission vehicles by 2028 and deliver a zero-emissions bus fleet by 2035.
  • Working with the Welsh Government and Local Authorities to widen availability of cycle hire facilities.
  • Exploring opportunities for electrification of additional train lines outside the Core Valleys Lines. 
  • Introducing battery-powered trains along the Wales and Borders network. 
  • Ensuring a network of electric vehicle charging points on the road network by 2025 to facilitate easier longdistance travel.

We’ll reduce our vulnerability to future climate change by:

  • Delivering the objectives laid out in the Climate Adaptation and Resilience Plan to increase climate resilience of TfW’s assets and operations.
  • Developing a Climate Adaptation Framework to support the assessment of climate risk in line with the latest climate projections for the Core Valleys Lines.


Good for culture and the Welsh language

We’ll promote the heritage and culture of Wales by:

  • Developing a Heritage Action Plan.
  • Establishing a Heritage Advisory Panel. 
  • Creating opportunities for creative and cultural activities for our passengers and communities.

We’ll support cultural events with transport planning to enable easier access.


We’ll help to create an environment in which the Welsh Language can thrive in line with the Welsh Language 
(Wales) Measure 2011 by:

  • Providing new opportunities for colleagues to learn and use the Welsh Language.
  • Increasing TfW’s Welsh Language translation capability.
  • Improving our passenger communications across the network to ensure more Welsh speakers can confidently use transport services in the language of their choice.

We’ll protect our historical assets such as former railway lines and ensure they’re preserved or re-used as cycle ways or footpaths.


Good for the economy and places in Wales

We’ll ensure our supply chain supports sustainable development of the Welsh economy by

Providing work opportunities for small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) and voluntary third sector enterprises (TSEs). 

  • Sourcing 20% of TfW’s spend from Walesbased businesses and the areas we serve. 
  • Promoting sustainable and ethical public procurement practices in accordance with national policies and priorities.
  • Ensuring a minimum of 15% of sustainable criteria in tender evaluations.
  • Working with the supply chain to enhance innovation and collaboration.
  • Establishing a system of measurement for social value and well-being outcomes.


We’ll work with the supply chain to identify innovative and collaborative opportunities that deliver sustainable solutions through digital engagement via a TfW collaborative portal and our Innovation Labs. 

We’ll work with our supply chain to improve employment standards by:

  • Supporting our Infrastructure Delivery Partners to sign up to the Ethical Employment in Supply Chains Code of Conduct along with their supply chain.
  • Cascade the Real Living Wage throughout our supply chain. 

We’ll develop our Metro programmes to support employment accessibility in Wales by:

  • Working with local authorities to support planning policies that locate new developments near public transport hubs and routes. 
  • Connecting people who live in rural areas to their place of work. 
  • Making tourist areas more accessible by public transport.

We’ll support the development of a hydrogen economy in Wales by:

  • Piloting hydrogen fuel-cell buses with the intention of a wider roll-out. 
  • Working with educational institutions to develop a skilled workforce that can maintain and service hydrogen infrastructure. 
  • Collaborating with local organisations to develop hydrogen infrastructure. 

We’ll develop and implement a Sustainable Tourism Strategy to monitor the impact of tourism and ensure our activities create jobs and promote Welsh culture.


Aim TfW Directorates Stakeholders Monitoring framework 
Ensure the interests of our local 
communities are at the heart of our 
Customer and culture
  • Community rail partners
  • Third sector groups

S2, S6, S12, S20
Improve station environments for the 
benefit of communities
  • Customer and culture
  • Safety, sustainability and risk
  • Infrastructure
  • Community rail partners
  • Third sector groups
  • Station adopters

S2, S11, S20, S24, S25, S27
Understand and fulfil passenger 
  • Customer and culture
  • Public sector organisations
  • Commercial organisations
  • Educational institutions
S2, S11, S20
Ensure communities are better informed 
about key projects.
  • Customer and culture
  • Accessibility and inclusion panel
  • Third sector groups
  • The Wales and borders public
S2, S11, S24
Reduce our impact on the environment
  • Safety, sustainability and risk 
  • Customer and culture
  • Transport planning and development 
  • Infrastructure
  • The Welsh Government
  • Natural Resources Wales

S21, S23, S25, S26, S27
Deliver the objectives set out in the 
Biodiversity Action Plan and duties set out 
in Section 6 of the Environment (Wales) 
Act 2016.
  • Safety, sustainability and risk 
  • Customer and culture
  • Transport planning and development 
  • Infrastructure
  • The Welsh Government
  • Natural Resources Wales 
  • Community rail partners
  • Third sector groups
  • Station adopters
S23, S25, S26
Develop an emissions pathway for 
TfW’s direct operations and facilitate the 
decarbonisation of the transport sector in 
Wales to enable zero-emissions travel.
  • Safety, sustainability and risk
  • Transport planning and development 
  • Commercial
  • Infrastructure
  • The Welsh Government
  • Local Authorities
  • Bus operators
M2, M3, M6

S7, S10, S23
Reduce our vulnerability to future climate 
  • Safety, sustainability and risk
  • Transport planning and development 
  • Infrastructure
  • The Welsh Government
S20, S21, S22, S27
Promote the heritage and culture of 
  • Safety, sustainability and risk
  • Transport planning and development
  • Local Authorities
  • Cadw
Create an environment in which the Welsh 
Language can thrive.
  • Customer and culture
  • Transport planning and development
  • Local Authorities
  • The Wales and borders public
S11, S14, S15
Ensure our supply chain supports 
sustainable development of the 
Welsh economy.
  • Customer and culture
  • Commercial
  • Supply chain
  • SMEs and TSEs
S17, S26
Develop our Metro programmes to 
support employment accessibility.
  • Transport planning and development
  • Customer and culture
  • The Welsh Government
  • Local Authorities
  • Bus operators
M1, M4, M5

S1, S2, S3, S4, S5, S9, S11, S12
Support the development of a hydrogen 
economy in Wales.
  • Transport planning and development
  • The Welsh Government
  • Local Authorities
  • Educational institutions
S21, S23, S24
Develop a sustainable tourism strategy.
  • Customer and culture
  • Third sector groups
  • Cadw
S1, S2, S27


Creating a diverse workforce, capable of delivering our vision.

We’re supporting our colleagues to be confident to be themselves at work. We’re working hard to improve the recruitment, retention, progression, development, and experience of the people we employ.

We want equality, diversity and inclusion to be integral to our culture. We want our employees and partners to be proud to work for us.

We believe that a diverse workforce is pivotal to TfW’s success and by embracing differing perspectives, thoughts, beliefs and ideas, we’ll be better equipped to face business challenges and make the most of opportunities.


We’ll ensure that our people are respected and valued.

We’ll ensure our organisation will be a fair and inclusive environment, where everyone feels valued and can have equal opportunities to fulfil their potential by:

  • Running a biannual EDI organisational survey that will help identify the areas of focus for creating an inclusive culture for our employees. 
  • Supporting our employee-led working groups to create a more equal, diverse and inclusive workplace. 

We’ll enhance the employee experience to ensure overall employee health, well-being, productivity and retention by:

  • Creating a culture of employee engagement, well-being, diversity and inclusion. 
  • Providing a safe and healthy working environment with welfare facilities. 
  • Delivering the objectives laid out in our Corporate Health Strategy. 
  • Providing opportunities for colleagues to up-skill through the Learning and Development Strategy.

Build an organisation of leaders with the right development tools, resources and capability to effectively deliver our organisational commitments by:

  • Developing and implementing a Skills and Leadership Strategy that encompasses early talent, opportunities for existing colleagues and skills and recruitment.
  • Developing our in-house leadership programme, Leading With, to create a positive and empowering leadership culture across the organisation.


‘Leading with’

We value the importance of our people and understand that investing in our leaders will provide positive outcomes for not only individuals, but the organisation and our wider communities as we work towards keeping Wales safe and moving.


Our leadership programme is designed to give both current leaders and aspiring leaders a development journey and a chance to learn new skills, and gain feedback from colleagues and peers on their leadership.


We’re developing leaders with skills and behaviours, ensuring they have the right tools needed to fit our current and future needs.


Delivered 18 
modules to 56 


We will address the long-term skills gap and future needs of the transport sector in Wales by: 

  • Working with Wales Council for Voluntary Action (WCVA) and other local agencies to advertise vacancies and help local people achieve the skills to apply for these vacancies.
  • Delivering a careers programme which will include apprenticeships, internships, and graduate schemes within TfW.


Aim TfW Directorates
Ensure our organisation will be a fair and inclusive environment.
  • Customer and culture
Enhance the employee experience.
  • Safety, sustainability and risk
  • Customer and culture
Ensure that our leaders have the development tools, resources and capability to effectively deliver our organisational commitments.
  • Customer and culture
Address the long-term skills gap and future needs of the transport sector in Wales.
  • Customer and culture



Sustainable Development Plan 2022-27 PDF