Dumfriesshire MP, David Mundell, has met with Nick Donovan, Managing Director of First TransPennine Group, about train services from Lockerbie.
With a strong track record of campaigning for many years for better services from Lockerbie, Mr Mundell is building on his previous campaign to get more services improvements from Lockerbie. More trains already calling at Lockerbie are welcome, according to Mr Mundell, but more can be done to produce a timetable to fully meet the needs of local people.
Mr Mundell said – “A lot has been done to improve train services from Lockerbie, but there is more still to be done. I am still committed to a direct service from Lockerbie to Edinburgh arriving before 9am, as well as evening services at least on a Friday and Saturday and improvements to Sunday services.
“The Edinburgh festival has just finished, and was a great boost to Scotland’s economy, but I think it’s disappointing that local people couldn’t go to an event in the evening and get a train back to Lockerbie. I’ve raised these points with Transpennine, to encourage them to include them in their bid to renew their franchise."
Mr Mundell also raised the issue of overcrowded trains about which he has received complaints over the summer. He said, "I restated to Transpennine that it is unacceptable that local people should have to stand between Lockerbie and Edinburgh in particular and that this was contrary to undertakings already given previously by them and that I am looking for a full explanation."
Mr Mundell also raised Club 55 with Transpennine, explaining Club 55 was a promotion run by Scotrail and since Abellio won the franchise, Lockerbie seems to be the only station in Scotland that isn’t included in the new Club 50 promotion which gives discounted fares in Scotland. He said:- " I’ve been contacted by a number of constituents on this issue and have raised it with Scotrail and Transpennine. Transpennine are looking into it and will be getting back to me with a proposal. It's not fair to exclude Lockerbie passengers from these deals.”
Mr Mundell also asked Transpennine to work with Network Rail and the Council to support improving car parking facilities for passengers and so also improve the situation for local residents.