Murdo Fraser MSP has backed a call from a rail union to scrap ScotRail’s controversial planned timetable changes, describing them as “unnecessary” and “uncalled for.”
The Scottish Conservative politician supports the move by the RMT (National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers), which followed a survey of their ScotRail workforce. The union have said the proposals will have a negative impact on rail passengers.
Commenting, Mr Fraser, who represents the Mid Scotland and Fife region, said: “It is very interesting to hear that 96% of RMT ScotRail workers feel these proposals will affect passengers negatively, and that they have called for them to be scrapped.
“The ScotRail proposals are unnecessary and uncalled for. They would see the Perth to Edinburgh rail service travel via Cowdenbeath – adding 10 minutes to the journey - and making it on average, one hour and 40 minutes in total, which is just ridiculous in this day and age.
“The plans would also see the main service between Inverness to Perth/Edinburgh travel via Stirling, where passengers will need to change trains. Again, this is utter nonsense as some passengers may miss the required onward train.
“And I know some Fife rail passengers aren’t happy with the proposed changes to their timetables.”
Mr Fraser continued: “Instead of cutting rail services and changing timetables, it would make far more sense to look at having a direct rail link between Perth and Edinburgh, cutting the time between the two cities and providing a service fit for the 21st century. This is something the Conservatives in Perth and Kinross have called for, for some time.”
Abellio ScotRail is consulting over proposals for a timetable from May 2022 which would run 2,100 services a day - a reduction of 300 compared to the pre-pandemic timetable. The consultation closes on Friday, October 1 - https://www.scotrail.co.uk/about-scotrail/fit-future
The survey of RMT ScotRail members ran from September 24-27 and almost 400 responses were received.