Borders Rail should be extended to Carlisle

At the AGM for the Campaign for Borders Rail, Rachael Hamilton MSP called for the extension to go to Carlisle. These views have been echoed by John Lamont MP when lobbying the UK Government to extend the rail line.

The AGM, held last Saturday (21st October) saw a panel discuss the extension to Borders Rail. The panel consisted of Rachael Hamilton MSP for Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire, Alex Hynes (ScotRail MD), Cllr Colin Glover (Carlisle CC) and Hawick Provost Watson McAteer (Scottish Borders Council).

The AGM was well received and the membership voted to continue campaign for the extension of Borders Railway to Hawick onto Carlisle.

Rachael Hamilton MSP for Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire said: ‘It was a real honour to be invited as a guest to the Campaign for Borders Rail AGM. It was a spirited and lively event in which we were all agreed – Borders Rail must be extended to Hawick and then onto Carlisle.

‘An extended Borders rail line will play a crucial part in a creating an integrated transport network in the Borders. It will bring more visitors to the Borders and help grow our local economies.

‘In the Scottish Borders we’ve seen the Scottish Government drag out other rail projects with repeated studies and assessments. It’s now time the Scottish Government took action and agreed to extending Borders Rail.

‘This can be a real cross-Border initiative that will benefit both sides of the Border. It’s an exciting opportunity and I think we should grab it with both hands.’

John Lamont MP for Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk added: 'I have been lobbying the UK Government to take the next steps to facilitate the extension of the Borders railway down to Carlisle.

'I am keen that the Borderlands Growth Deal includes some work on the costs and benefits of this investment, it is important that we get this right.

'Last week, I met with the MP for Carlisle, John Stevenson, who is very keen on a rail link between his constituency and the Borders.

'The extension of the Borders Railway will require cooperation between Scotland’s two Governments and I look forward to helping with that in any way I can.'