Rail cuts in pipeline

train services beyond Girvan will be cut at the end of the year under new timetable plans by rail bosses.

The Gazette has learned that services to Barrhill and Stranraer will be cut to only six a day, but services to Maybole and Girvan will see a 25 per cent increase.

And the cut in services south of Girvan raises the question of the line’s future especially when Stena Line move from Stranraer to Cairnryan.

A rail source told the Gazette earlier this week: “People are particulary upset with this news.

“With Stena moving to Cairnryan and no rail link to the terminal, the future doesn’t look good.

“I understand the plan will be to bus ferry passengers all the way to Ayr and that will increase the amount of traffic on the roads in the area.

“Surely it would make more sense to bus them to Stranraer and then use the train to Ayr, Glasgow or wherever, especially when we are trying to introduced more environmentally-friendly ways of travelling and ease congestion on the roads.

“However, the increase in services to Girvan is very good. But we are worried about the line south of Girvan.”

The new timetable is scheduled to be put in place in December this year, but our source stressed that now is the time to act to try and get something done.

They added: “Who is pulling the strings with these decisions? We need to maximise pressure now for something to happen.

“And despite the new timetable being almost nine months away, we really need to act now.

“It’s a big problem and it’s appropriate that we take this forward. This timetable was put together before any consultation was finished.

“Despite it affecting Barrhill and Stranraer more, I think it’s important that everyone pulls together on this to fight it.

“This is a last ditch opportunity to lobby against this planned timetable for those who find don’t find this acceptable.

“It will effect all stations in the area.”

It is not the first time services have threatened to be cut in the area. SAYSLA have been campaigning for a number of years to see a revised timetable that suits more people in the area.

They had asked ScotRail to make changes to timetables allowing more students from Girvan to arrive in Ayr at more suitable times for colleges to encourage more users.

A meeting, hosted by the Stranraer Development Trust, to discuss what can be done will be held in the Millennium Centre, Stranraer on Wednesday, March 23 at 7pm.