Local MP Richard Thomson is backing a bid from Transport Scotland for funding to carry out works to make Inverurie Station more accessible.
While railways have seen significant devolution to Scotland in recent years, rail accessibility is still a matter for Westminster and Transport Scotland have to bid into a fund held by the UK Department for Transport for accessibility improvements.
In a letter to the MP seeking his support for the funding bid, Jacqueline McDonald, Rail Accessibility Manager at Transport Scotland said:
“Accessibility issues at Inverurie have been considered and as such Transport Scotland seeks to nominate the station for consideration of funding.
“If successful the improvements would open up the opportunity to access rail services for those in your constituency who currently experience difficult doing so as well as delivering benefits to the wider community.”
Commenting, Richard Thomson MP said:
“I’m delighted Transport Scotland are seeking to take forward these works at Inverurie Station, which will make rail services more available to those with accessibility needs. With the continuing expansion of the town, making it easier for people to opt to move from car journeys to rail is important.
“While I’m very happy to give my support to the proposals, it does seem bizarre in this day and age of local control that not only is this aspect of the railways controlled by Westminster but an added bureaucratic hurdle is added by having to get the local MP to write a letter of support for the funding bid. Clearly, this is yet another area of public policy which would benefit from being devolved to the Scottish Parliament where I’m sure accessibility issues would be recognised and dealt with.”