Invernessian objects to St Andrews railway

A letter in The Herald from an Inverness man queries the £40K grant for the St Andrews study and opines that the money would be better spent improving main lines, ‘including routes connecting Inverness with Aberdeen and Perth.’

Alan Mathieson asserts that the cost would be well over £100M and queries why this should be paid for by the taxpayer, claiming that the Government does not ‘pay for local roads or subsidise bus services’ (incorrect - the great majority of the money these services receive from local government comes from Holyrood) so ‘there is no reason why it should pay for or subsidise a local train service’ (apart from the environmental arguments and the fact that St Andrews is a prime destination which has become clogged with cars because most people don’t want to use a bus!).

It is clear that Mr Mathieson does not understand the case at all because he goes on to state that a new railway would not reduce the journey time nor remove the need to change from car or bus. Yes, it would, because what is wanted is direct services from St Andrews to Edinburgh and to Dundee. The removal of the need to change, according to the Tata report from 2012, would save 10 minutes per journey and, as they say, time is money.