We have engaged consultants Aecom to investigate the technical feasibility of reopening Evanton Station, with funding from the Coastal Communities Fund, HITRANS and Kiltearn Community Council. There have been delays in accessing the future timetable data. A presentation to Kiltearn Community Council is scheduled for Monday 7 September .
The former Class 314 electric train has now successfully run on hydrogen at the Bo'ness heritage railway. The train has been retro fitted with a fuel cell and hydrogen tanks, with green hydrogen supplied by Angel Trains electrolyser. Wick-Thurso remains the proposed test route for mainline testing, a Programme for Government commitment for 2025.
The plan to recommence timber from the Flow Country to Inverness by rail has been stalled as wagons are not currently available. It had been hoped to run a demonstrator project, building on the success of the Georgemas trial of 2020. Planning permission for a lineside loading pad has been awarded. Discussions are ongoing on routes to wagon procurement. The economics of timber by rail will be much improved if West Fraser at Morayhill decide to create a rail terminal taking advantage of the signalling alterations at the new Inverness Airport station.
The new station will be open for the start of the December 22 timetable. HITRANS work on this has been ongoing since 2005. The station will cater for airport users, airport workers, business park visitors and workers, and residents of Tornagrain and wider East Inverness.
The new signalling token exchange point at Stromeferry on the Kyle Line 30% funded by HITRANS is now operational. It breaks up the long 40-minute section between Strathcarron and Kyle, providing additional capacity for engineering access to the track, improved operations at Kyle through permissive working, and efficient road traffic management during periods of rockface maintenance on the A890.