ScotRail apologises to passengers

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AN OPEN letter was issued by ScotRail and Network Rail in which they apologised for disruption to services between Glasgow and Ayrshire, Renfrewshire and Inverclyde over the past year.

The letter declared: “We are sorry that performance over the past 12 months was below the level you expect from us.”

It said the disruption had a number of causes, including severe weather, vandalism, and the impact of major engineering works in connection with the £170m improvements along the lines between Paisley and Glasgow.

It also added these vital works by Network Rail are now complete – and increasing capacity, flexibility and reliability on one of the busiest passenger and freight routes across Scotland.

But the open letter also stressed: “However, we fully understand the inconvenience caused whilst the works took place and appreciate your patience during disruption.”

Steve Montgomery, ScotRail’s managing director, and David Simpson, Network Rail’s route managing director, Scotland also insisted: “Punctuality and reliability levels have now returned to target, but we remain committed to bringing about further improvement.

“Our priority has been to return our services back to the levels you deserve, and we have worked closely to achieve this, with much better performance in recent months.”

The open letter also told of a new fleet of modern, comfortable electric trains now serving the Ayrshire, Inverclyde and Renfrewshire routes, bringing real benefits for travellers, and of investments in improvements to track and signal reliability, tackling vandalism, and increasing the resilience to severe weather. And it revealed new services will be introduced in the December 2012 timetable, with details to be announced in due course.

The letter also said: “Thank you for your patience. We are committed to giving more people than ever before the opportunity to travel by rail.”

See letters page 10