Stations plan on track
A two-hourly service between Edinburgh and Berwick with timing for stops at East Linton and Reston is part of the new planned timetable, which could see trains running through both stations as soon as December 2016.
Transport Minister Keith Brown revealed the latest development following the announcement of Abellio as the new ScotRail operator.
Mr Brown said:
“This is a huge step forward towards the realisation of these services and shows a real commitment from the Scottish Government and ScotRail.
“Scotland’s railways are a driver for economic regeneration and can bring jobs, investment and new study and social opportunities for communities.
“Our Scottish Stations Fund is now awaiting further details from the South East Scotland Regional Transport Partnership (SEStran) and East Lothian and Scottish Borders Councils for the funding application which will bring the new stations at East Linton and Reston to life.”
Mr Brown will now meet with SEStran and the Rail Action Group, East of Scotland (RAGES) to hear how they are progressing those plans.
Russell Imrie, Chair of SEStran, said:
"I am delighted to hear the good news in the Minister's announcement. This fits very well with SEStran’s objectives of encouraging alternatives to private car use, contributing to the Government's ambitious targets for reduction of greenhouse gases and supporting economic development in Edinburgh and throughout the SEStran area.
“It also recognises the importance of the East Coast main line to the economy of Scotland.
“We will now work closely with our partners and project co-funders, East Lothian and Scottish Borders Councils, to complete the detailed work required to allow Network Rail to develop the stations as part of the Scottish Stations Fund."
RAGES Chairman Tom Thorburn also welcomed the news.
"This is terrific news for our area and will be of huge benefit to a whole range of people and businesses, namely those wishing to access jobs in Edinburgh, students being able to commute for their tertiary education at QMU, Edinburgh etc., the ability to take in the theatre and sporting fixtures, and tourist access to our areas from other parts of the country.
"It must be noted that we could not have achieved this great win for our area without the help and support of our members, MSPs, Councillors, SEStran and East Lothian and Scottish Borders Councils.
"The RAGES Committee are extremely grateful to Transport Minister Keith Brown and Transport Scotland for agreeing to this new local rail service, with re-opened stations at Reston and East Linton a step closer.”
Transport Scotland Press Office : 0141 272 7195
Transport Scotland is the national transport agency for Scotland, delivering the Scottish Government's vision for transport.