Scottish Government will take over ScotRail services on 1 April 2022

Transport Minister-8

Speaking in a statement to Parliament today, Transport Minister Jenny Gilruth confirmed the transition of ScotRail services into public ownership will take place on 1 April 2022.

The Minister also invited elected members and rail unions to take part in a national conversation on the future of rail services, to help shape the creation of an affordable, sustainable, customer focused rail passenger service in Scotland, in a post pandemic world. Information on how people can get involved will be provided in the coming weeks­.

She added that she is looking forward to working closely with wider partners including women’s organisations and British Transport Police to improve the public transport system, make it safer and build on the work already underway.

The new company will, like most other public sector, arm’s length operations, benefit from Public Sector Pay Policy.

Ms Gilruth said:

“I can confirm that the transition of ScotRail into Scottish Government control will take place on 1 April 2022. Whilst that’s good news, it’s clear that much work still needs to be done – and in a collaborative way - to ensure the long term sustainability of rail operations in Scotland, to best meet the needs of the people we all represent.

“I want to kick-start a National Conversation about what our new beginning for ScotRail should look like - an affordable, sustainable, customer focused rail passenger  service in Scotland in a post pandemic world.  I invite all Members who have a genuine interest in the future of ScotRail, to get involved and work with me to shape the change that needs to happen. Change will happen on April the 1st – so let’s have a conversation about that change and let’s work together to influence how that happens. After all, we all want a railway that delivers for our constituents.

“Our rail staff have a vital role to play in shaping and delivering a successful future railway for Scotland. Like so many of our essential workers, ScotRail staff, and indeed, all our rail workers, went above and beyond throughout the pandemic. We will always be grateful to them for all that they did to help keep our rail services running during these challenging last two years.

“We want to take all of ScotRail’s staff with us on this journey into Scottish Government ownership.  That’s why this invitation is also extended to the rail unions. We know the unions are passionate about the industry, and through open and frank discussion we can work together to harness that aspirations for the future. I look forward to those conversations tomorrow.

“I also take the issue of women’s safety on public transport extremely seriously and we will be consulting with women and women’s organisations across the country to better understand their experiences and how we can improve our public transport system to make it safer and more enjoyable for them to use.

“To meet our climate change targets, and our aim of reducing car kilometres by 20% by 2030 –  we need Scotland’s railways. An efficient, effective, productive and profitable railway is critical to our Mission Zero ambition for transport.  We want ScotRail to deliver the rail services the people of Scotland – and the generations yet to come - need and deserve.”

Published 9 Feb 2022