Sewta was the alliance of 10 local authorities in South East Wales charged with preparing and co-ordinating regional transport policies, plans and programmes on behalf of its constituent councils.
The Board of Sewta was formally constituted as a joint committee of the local authorities in the area. Newport City Council had the official role of Clerk and Legal Adviser to the Board.
The members of Sewta were the following local authorities:
The local authorities worked in partnership with:
Sewta came into being in 2003-4 when the previous local authority groupings of SWIFT - South Wales Integrated Fast Transit and TIGER - Transport Integration in the Gwent Economic Region were brought together to create the South East Wales Transport Alliance (Sewta).
Agreement to establish Sewta (including Sewta constitution)
Sewta functions, Core Aim & Objectives
The functions of Sewta were:
- to prepare regional strategies comprising transportation policies, proposals and programmes;
- to apply for external funding in pursuit of those regional strategies (including formulating public transport capital and revenue programmes for that purpose);
- to the extent only that the functions are resourced through such external funding and subject to clause 5, to discharge the Councils’ transportation functions in implementation of those regional strategies, and for the avoidance of doubt this includes obtaining advice and services and the appointment of staff;
- to respond to consultations which have regional transportation implications;
- to provide advice to the Councils on strategic, regional and local policy and operational transportation issues relating to the area of South East Wales; and
- to do such other things as are agreed by the Councils to be dealt with by the Alliance.
The core aim and objectives of Sewta were:
- Core aim: Working for better co-ordinated and more effective transport for people and businesses in South East Wales
- Objective 1: To work in partnership with the people and organisations with a stake in transport in South East Wales
- Objective 2: To co-ordinate the delivery of an integrated transport strategy for South East Wales, seeking influence the modal choice through an appropriate mix of transport projects and supporting policies in the transport and related fields.
- Objective 3: To promote the essential role of transport in economic and land use planning and to influence land development to make the necessary provision for transport, and in particular public transport.
- Objective 4: To ensure that full account is taken of safety, sustainability and social inclusion in transport plans and schemes.
- Objective 5: To seek to increase the resources for transport for Wales, and to maximise the share available for South East Wales.
- Objective 6: To pursue common standards for transport across the whole of South East Wales, based on best practice; to seek cost-effective use of resources; and to identify and monitor targets to judge the success of its strategy.
- Objective 7: To drive the policy debate as a champion for transport, and in particular public transport; and to raise awareness of the role of local government in transport.
Sewta working arrangements
The leadership of Sewta comprised of two Members from each of the ten authorities forming the Board, together with non-voting representatives from partners. The Directorate, with officers from each authority provided senior management support for the Board.
Local authorities, partners and Welsh Government worked together through technical working groups. The working groups were:
- Policy Group
- Programme Management Group
- Active Travel Group
- Rail Group
- Bus Group
- Bus Funding Project Board
- Highways Group
- Road Safety Group
The working groups received support from dedicated staff at the Sewta Central Support Unit.
On 28 March 2014 the Sewta Board decided:
- Following its September 2014 meeting, to agree accounts, the Sewta Board ceases to meet;
- Sewta officer working arrangements, apart from the Bus Funding Project Board, cease as of 31st March 2014;
- The Board, in accordance with the joint agreement, delegates responsibility to Newport City Council to deal with any outstanding Human Resource and administrative issues;
- The Board, in accordance with the joint agreement, delegates responsibility to Torfaen County Borough Council to deal with any outstanding financial issues, including the closing of 2013/14 accounts;
- Newport City Council and Torfaen County Borough Council liaise to ensure that Sewta business is dealt with effectively;
- The Board delegates responsibility, via the South East Wales Directors of Environment and regeneration (SewDER), to the Transport Management Team to continue to progress the regional transport agenda.