Rail station campaign now building steam

John Aitken and Kenneth Halliday hand over the petition to Councillors Buchanan, Blackwood, Gow and Goldie.
John Aitken and Kenneth Halliday hand over the petition to Councillors Buchanan, Blackwood, Gow and Goldie.

The long running pursuit of a railway station for Bonnybridge built up even more momentum this week.

Members of the recently formed Bonnybridge Heritage Group, John Aitken and Kenneth Halliday, personally handed in a petition with over 1000 signatures to Falkirk Council asking for a station to be situated in the town.

The heritage group members were met at the municipal buildings by Baillie Billy Buchanan, who has fought long and hard to bring a station to his Bonnybridge ward, and Councillors Jim Blackwood, Linda Gow and Dennis Goldie.

Baillie Buchanan said: “Bonnybridge at one time had four railway stations, the first was opened in 1842 at High Bonnybridge and was the last to close in 1967. Since this time over the years Bonnybridge has increased its population, due to the housing boom of a few years ago, and is now home to 7000 people.

“The catchment area taking in surrounding areas would increase that to 20,000 people. During my time as a regional councillor in the ‘90s a railway study was taken up and the feasibility of re-opening a station in Bonnybridge was very positive.”

The response to the recent petition shows the desire for a station in the town is still strong and during the recent budget Falkirk Council Leader Craig Martin said the administration was still committed to seeing Bonnybridge, and also Grangemouth, railway stations open and operational.

He said: “We continue to support investment to re-open both Grangemouth and Bonnybridge railway stations. However, organisations in Scotland have been advised by the transport agency Sestrans to await the publication of the National Route Strategy which will announce the Scottish Government’s preferred investments for the long term on our railway network.”