Train failings

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So Scotland’s non-electrified rail fleet is at last to be equipped with at-seat power points? (your report, 2 September).

Really? It’s only taken a quarter of a century of pressure to bring this aspect of ScotRail into the 21st century.

This still leaves the majority of Scotland’s second-rate long-distance trains without power points, and at a conversion of one train a month, I could well be pushing up the daisies before the entire fleet is converted.

I should be delighted at the news, but the reality is that my heart sinks. The move means that these over-rated, under-
designed Dinky Toys are going to be with us long-distance passengers for years yet.

Oh, and these wretched two-carriage 158s are to have “better seats more closely aligned with windows, and more luggage and bike space (as) part of plans to make rail travel more 
appealing for tourists by maximising opportunities for panoramic views?”

There are those of us who might have expected that Transport Scotland and Abellio ScotRail would have insisted on such basic issues when the trains were first ordered.

There’s further bad news. The reopening of the Border railway means that, to equip it, trains from the rest of Scotland are to be moved there to run it.

Scotland already has a severe shortage of rolling stock (witness cutbacks on the Edinburgh-Glasgow line of six coaches to three, or three coaches southbound out of Inverness for two).

So we poor passengers – already crammed into trains never designed for passengers (never mind luggage and bikes) – are soon going to start envying the space that sardines enjoy in a tin.

Gordon Casely

Crathes

Kincardineshire

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