The Waverley route is on its way back after 37 years. The line originally ran from Carlisle to Edinburgh through the wild and bleak border country, but was controversially closed in 1969, the last major rail closure in the UK. Now 35 miles between Edinburgh and Tweedbank are about to be rebuilt, thanks to the Scottish parliament. Sixty houses are to be compulsorily purchased and demolished.
The S&D and Waverley routes had a lot in common – heavily engineered main lines serving a few major towns and many villages, lifelines for the communities through which they ran, especially in winter, both with a very loyal enthusiast and local support base and both essential routes in the future.
I’ve reproduced below a recent article. Wonder how long it will take us to get our first 35 miles open?
Green light for Borders Rail
25 July 2006
The Waverley Railway (Scotland) Bill has received Royal Assent.
This represents the last milestone on the legislative process for the Borders Rail Line and the project, which will be delivered by Transport Scotland, is now cleared to progress.
Welcoming the news, Transport Minister Tavish Scott said:
“I am delighted that this important rail project has now been given the green light.
“This rail line will increase the economic opportunities and improve quality of life for communities in Midlothian and the Borders – connecting them not only to Edinburgh and the rest of Scotland, but through the Edinburgh airport rail link to truly global markets
“Faster journey times, greater accessibility for passengers with disabilities, improved opportunities for education, employment and leisure, reduced emissions from road traffic, safer travel – these are the tangible transport and economic benefits that the railway will bring.
Transport Scotland, the transport delivery agency answerable to Scottish Ministers, is committed to providing in principle £115 million funding in 2002 prices towards the project with the rest to be funded by the councils and other interests.