Potential spelled out to rail network boss

From left, Allen Armstrong and Eugene Clarke of LMRC, with James Ledgerwood
From left, Allen Armstrong and Eugene Clarke of LMRC, with James Ledgerwood

A director with Scotland’s national train operating firm has been told of the potential benefits of getting Levenmouth back on track.

James Ledgerwood, director of economic development for Abellio Scotrail, was the special guest at the LevenMouth Rail Campaign’s July meeting, in which he gave a presentation about the firm’s objectives.

There are lots of opportunities which this small five miles of track presents

Ken Haig

Mr Ledgerwood told the gathering in Methil that a major Scottish Government objective was to reduce travel congestion – and a huge part of that was getting people on to public transport, such as buses and trains.

Scotland, he added, had only five million people,but 90 million journeys per year were currently made – and that figure was expected to rise to 105 million by 2020.

“That’s an enormous amount and it highlights the the importance of the rail industry to this country,” said Mr Ledgerwood.

A safe, punctual and sustainable rail network was crucial to the nation’s economy, by transporting people to work or places of study.

The company was also focused on the service ‘from doorstep to destination’, more than just from ‘A to B’, he added.

There were projects to upgrade station facilities and trains over the next few years, while the new Borders railway was set to open in September and, in time, would hopefully show the wider benefits to its area.

The LMRC members hope an existing five-mile stretch of line between Leven and Thornton can be brought back into use, giving a national track network slot back to the biggest urban area in Scotland currently not served directly by rail.

Group member Ken Haig told Mr Ledgerwood: “This campaign offers an ideal opportunity for you to make a depot here at the end of the Fife Circle, re-using one of the longest platforms in Scotland, at Cameronbridge, and linking in with Diageo.

“There are lots of opportunities which this small five miles of track presents.”

Afterwards, LMRC’s Eugene Clarke said on Facebook: “Real improvements are planned for the Scottish rail system – our challenge is to be part of them, rather than bypassed and forgotten.”