Rumbles: Reform Scotland right to say Scottish Government lacks ambition on rail services

Speaking in response to the publication of Reform Scotland’s report on Scottish railways and the Scottish Government’s delayed publication of the Scotrail improvement plan, the transport spokesperson for the Scottish Liberal Democrats Mike Rumbles MSP said:

“The Scottish Government needs to look closely at their delayed Scotrail improvement plan to make sure it answers the criticism of Reform Scotland that it ‘perhaps lacks the ambition to deliver long-term transformational change’.

“Reform Scotland are spot on with their recommendation for an ambitious study at how rail transport to the north and north east can be transformed.

“Aberdeen is an economic powerhouse that has been badly neglected for rail services. Journey times are atrocious and there have even been attempts in the past to put an end to direct services to London from the city.

“The transport minister has taken five weeks to publish the details of the Scotrail improvement plan.

“The Reform Scotland analysis shows that Scotrail had the highest rates of self-inflicted delays of operators across the UK. That is something the improvement plan needs to be examined against.

“It is deeply disappointing that the transport minister delayed publication in October and delayed again in November. Only now will passengers be able to see how the plan might make their lives easier.

“It is a nonsense for him to latch onto one suggestion from Reform Scotland whilst ignoring the rest.


Notes to editors:

Table 4 on Page 16 of the Reform Scotland report shows that “caused to self” delays under Scotrail were in the highest three of the operators across the whole of the UK.

Plans to end direct services from Aberdeen to London were reported here

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