Council challenges Scotrail plans to reduce service on Milngavie to Glasgow line

A motion was agreed by East Dunbartonshire Council last week to challenge the proposed reduction in service on the Glasgow to Milngavie rail line.

Milngavie train station

The reduction from four services to two per hour during off-peak times is part of ScotRail's 'Fit for the Future' timetable review.

The review is taking place to bring in post-pandemic timetables from May 2022, with the halving of off-peak trains being in comparison to pre-pandemic timetables.

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Joint Council Leader Vaughan Moody said: “ScotRail is suggesting their timetable review is to ensure the service meets the needs of customers and the aims of the Scottish Government as Scotland recovers from the pandemic.

"The reality is the review amounts to a wholesale cut in services, on a line that has been frankly unreliable for years, with the numbers of trains operating off-peak on week days and during the day on Saturdays being halved from four to two an hour. This is unacceptable and we need commitment to a frequent, reliable service.”

Whilst timetables have been impacted by Covid-19 over the last 18 months, a review is now taking place to bring in new, post-pandemic timetables from May 2022. The halving of off-peak trains is in comparison to pre-pandemic timetables.

The Council says it has raised the issue of poor performance on the Milngavie line with ScotRail and the Scottish Government in recent years and is of the view a reduction in the service will impact on commuters and tourists.

Joint Council Leader Andrew Polson added: “In a unanimous decision, this Council calls on ScotRail, Transport Scotland and the Scottish Government to confirm services will not be reduced on the Milngavie line - and seeks a commitment to improving service performance. Surely with the backdrop of the UN climate conference we should be enhancing sustainable, public transport.”

The motion confirms the council believes given the climate crisis the use of public transport should be promoted and local people should not be disadvantaged by the proposed reduction, which will also make it less attractive for tourists and walkers, critical to the local economy.

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