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The Friends of the Far North Line
Cairdean Na Loine Tuath
the campaign group for rail north of Inverness - lobbying for improved services for the local user, tourist and freight operator

MSP Calls For Better Train Service North

The following article appeared in the Ross-shire Journal, 12th December 2002 after Maureen Macmillan, MSP had been approached by a constituent, complaining that there were no mid-afternoon trains north from Inverness. He lives in Muir of Ord, works part time and would like to commute by train.

Highlands and Islands Labour MSP Maureen Macmillan called on ScotRail to improve its commuter rail services south and north of Inverness. At present there are no trains north out of Inverness from late morning until the evening commuter train at 5.30pm.

Mrs Macmillan, who is a member of the Scottish Parliament's Transport and Environment Committee, commented, "With ever increasing traffic volumes on the roads in and out of Inverness the rail network has a vital role to play in transporting people to and from work. The existing level of service is inadequate. The changing traffic flow following the introduction of traffic lights on the Clachnaharry Bridge, together with work scheduled for the Kessock Bridge and North Kessock junction will all increase congestion on the Kessock Bridge and the road south into Inverness in the next few months."

"The re-opening of Beauly Railway Station has proved to be a great success and the service is being well used by locals commuting to Inverness. It also proves that people will leave their cars at home if a viable rail service is available. I am aware that ScotRail do have the intention to improve their service but I have asked them for a firm timescale and also any further planned station re-openings."

"There is no doubt that those who commute to Inverness would welcome and use an improved rail service from Tain in the north. A more comprehensive service during the day, would also be used by shoppers, part-time workers and those who do not want to use their car."

Re-printed by kind permission of the Ross-Shire Journal

We welcome this support from Maureen Macmillan