Fund will pay for railway stations study

The South West Scotland Transport Partnership has agreed to include £36,000 within its draft capital porgramme for 2014/15 to fund studies of potential sites for new railway stations.

This follows the decision last week by Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Economy, Environment and Infrastructure Committee to take forward bids for new stations at Dunragit/Glenluce, Thornhill, Eastriggs and Beattock, as well as refurbishment of Stranraer Station, under the Scottish government’s Scottish Stations Fund.

Chairman of Swestrans Brian Collins explained: “The money is required to bring previous appraisals of the various sites up to date, and in some cases to do initial work on feasibility.

“While these sites are all included within Dumfries and Galloway’s Regional Transport Strategy, published in 2008, it is important to recognise that if any of them are to secure funding from the Scottish government, then we will have to make a good case for them, based on evidence of need and benefit to local communities and the travelling public.

“This initial funding of technical appraisals will help us to ensure bids taken forward by Swestrans and the council are as robust as they can be.

“The Scottish Stations Fund can help areas such as ours to develop stations which increase the attractiveness of rail travel within and into our region. Swestrans will be seeking to engage with local communities and businesses to build the case for these stations and take bids forward, where we can demonstrate need, feasibility and resources.”