Rail accessibility is a matter which remains reserved to the UK Government. Scottish Ministers, through Transport Scotland, work in close partnership with the Department for Transport (DfT) to identify Scottish stations that should be given priority for improving access for disabled people. The final decision on successful stations rests with the DfT.

In 2006, the DfT published the Railways for All Strategy outlining the UK government's intention to improve access to the rail network for disabled people across Britain. A key part of this strategy was the Access for All Fund.

The Access for All programme was launched in 2006 to deliver accessible routes at stations.

The Access for All Mid-Tier Programme will deliver accessibility improvements leading to small-scale enhancements.

In 2019 seven more Scottish Stations secured funding from the Access for All Programmes. In the main, Access for All has become the vehicle by which station accessibility can be achieved for stations that meet the set criteria. 

Scottish Ministers seek to identify accessibility improvements as part of larger projects, as such some station access improvements are being delivered as part of outputs of other projects such as Electrification, Enhancements and Major Stations Upgrades supported by the Scottish Ministers. All new build stations such as Kintore, Robroyston, Reston and East Linton are built to modern railway standards and are accessible and this will be the same for any planned future stations.

Transport Scotland and DfT published the updated Design Standards for Accessible Railway Station A joint Code of Practice by the Department for Transport and Transport Scotland, which details the requirements for providing accessible rail services to disabled passengers.

Get in touch

If you want to know more about our work on access please contact us at TS_Rail_Directorate_Communications@transport.gov.scot, identifying the subject topic as Accessibility.

BSL users

Please note that BSL users can contact Transport Scotland using contactSCOTLAND-BSL, the online British Sign Language interpreting.


The Scottish franchise fleet of 350 trains is now fully compliant with PRM-NTSN (Persons with Reduced Mobility - National Technical Specification Notice) as required by the UK legislation.  This provides two dedicated wheelchair spaces per train, audible and visual information on train and call for aid systems on board.

ScotRail class 385 is fully accessible and incorporates a new design of tip up table installed for wheelchair users, accessible toilet includes extra features such as privacy opening of automatic toilet door which allows companion to enter without it fully opening.

Additionally the class 380 fleet underwent an internal refresh, including fitting of priority seats “jelly baby” covers.

ScotRail provides details of Scottish stations and train services and their level of accessibility. Information on ScotRail's services for disabled people is available in their Accessible Travel Policy.

Caledonian Sleepers’ new fleet includes fully accessible berths and toilets.  Two accessible berths, one being a double are available per eight car unit.  A complete sixteen car train (when joined) provides four accessible berths.

The Club Car and seated coaches are also accessible, the lounge car includes tip up tables for wheelchair users and the accessible toilets allow privacy opening of the automatic toilet door to enable a companion to enter without it fully opening.

All dedicated Caledonian Sleeper operated lounge facilities are fully accessible and include accessible showers.

Information on Accessible Travel with Caledonian Sleeper is available on their website.

Access for All fund

Control period 6 (2019-24)

Montrose Station

In July 2018 the Secretary of State for Transport announced the continuation of the Access for All Programme in Control Period 6 (CP6). Funding was secured for six stations from the main Access for All Programme, Anniesland, Croy, Dumfries, Johnstone, Port Glasgow and Uddingston.

Step free access has now been delivered, through the installation of new footbridges with lifts, at Croy, Johnstone and Port Glasgow, with work underway at Anniesland, Dumfries and Uddingston. These remaining stations are anticipated to be completed in June and July 2024.

Access for All Mid-Tier

Network Rail secured funding and to improve accessibility at Anderston station. A new lift was installed at the station providing passengers with a step-free route to the platforms.

Control Period 7 (2024-29)

The UK Government confirmed, as part of their recent Network North announcement, that £350m will be made available to improve the accessibility of UK train stations. The Department for Transport are assessing over 300 nominations for Access for All funding beyond 2024. For those stations which are successful, the funding will create an obstacle free, accessible route from the station entrance to platforms. Successful nominations will be announced in due course.

Electrification programme

Stirling – Dunblane - Alloa electrification

Step-free access is now available at Stirling Station. The historic lattice footbridge was raised up and reinstalled, along with a new lift to create step-free access to all platforms. 

Shotts electrification programme

Step-free access is now available at Livingston South, West Calder, Addiewell, Fauldhouse and Cleland stations.

Aberdeen to Inverness improvements

Two new fully accessible stations, Forres and Kintore, have been opened as part of this project. The new stations provide step-free access between platforms via a footbridge with lifts.

Access for All CP5 funding also delivered step-free access at Elgin station.

Forres station

The car park more than doubled in size to 58 spaces. It now includes:

  • three spaces for blue badge holders
  • four oversized spaces
  • two charging points for electric cars.

A new road bridge over the railway links the station to the town.

Kintore station

The car park now has 168 car parking spaces and includes:

  • disabled and electric charging spaces
  • bike storage
  • connection into the local bus network
  • links to the Inverurie-Kintore cycle path

Accessibility improvements in pipeline

  • Access improvements continue to be considered for Aviemore, Pitlochry and Kingussie on the Highland Main Line and for Nairn on the Aberdeen to Inverness route. Listed Building consent was achieved for the installation of new accessible footbridges at both Kingussie and Nairn in late 2023. Network Rail continue to work with the respective local authority planning departments with respect to Pitlochry and Aviemore.

  • Work is underway to identify options to improve accessibility at Dunkeld & Birnam station. Considerations will include; safe pedestrian access to and from the town; Station lighting; low platform heights and step free access to both platforms.

  • East Kilbride & Barrhead Enhancements – accessibility improvements formed part of the considerations of these larger projects. The East Kilbride Enhancements will also relocate Hairmyres station and make it fully accessible.

  • Carstairs – accessibility improvements were considered at the station as part of a larger scheme. A new footbridge and lift providing step-free access to the island platform will be installed during the course of 2024.

  • New fully accessible stations are planned at Levenmouth (Leven and Cameron Bridge).