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3 December 2009

Shotts in the arm for Glasgow-Edinburgh rail services

Rail passengers across Lanarkshire and the Lothians are set to benefit from a significant improvement in the service linking Glasgow with Edinburgh via Shotts, with journey times slashed by up to 33 minutes.

As part of the new winter timetable announced by Transport Scotland, a new hourly service will commence on Monday, December 14, more than doubling the number of journeys on the route.

Operated by ScotRail, the new service will stop at Bellshill, Shotts, West Calder, Livingston South and Haymarket, offering a journey time between Glasgow Central and Waverley of 63 minutes, compared to 96 minutes at present.

This new service will run between the current hourly all stops service and reduces the need for Lanarkshire passengers heading for Edinburgh to travel via Glasgow.

Transport Minister Stewart Stevenson

"The new timetable will offer quicker journeys, extra evening services and a more regular departure pattern, delivering major improvements for passengers across Lanarkshire and the Lothians.

"We have worked hard to ensure communities across central Scotland can benefit from access to the rail network and these new services deliver a good balance between connectivity and journey times.

"These new services demonstrate we are committed to helping more people make the switch away from the private car to more sustainable modes of transport."

The service is the first in an ambitious package of improvements between Glasgow and Edinburgh, as identified in the Scottish Government’s Strategic Transport Projects Review.

Journey times will also be cut between the principal stations on the route to both Glasgow and Edinburgh and additional services will operate in the evening in both directions, offering a more regular service for passengers.

The new services mean 58 train journeys on the Shotts line linking Edinburgh and Glasgow Central compared to the existing 28.

Steve Montgomery, ScotRail’s managing director, said:

"I welcome these increases to services. The enhancements will bring many benefits to our growing number of customers."

Stewart Stevenson
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