Rail link for St Andrews moves a step closer as case for change approved

St Andrews has come a step closer to seeing a rail link connecting the town with the rest of Scotland.

Transport Scotland has approved a case for change for the potential transport link.

It is the first stage in the process for the reinstatement of a line to the town - with the last one having closed in the 1960s.

The town's nearest railway station is more than five miles away at Leuchars.

Campaign group StARLink says the current transport infrastructure in the town cannot cope with increasing demand.

The group says Transport Scotland's acceptance of the case for change accepts that the status quo is not an option.

A spokesperson for StARLink said: "The quality of connectivity between St Andrews and Scotland's major towns, cities, and transport hubs creates a range of transport-related problems for those travelling to/from the town and those who live in the town - all travel is road-based and the overwhelming majority of journeys are not taken by bus but by car.

"Investing in improved transport links to St Andrews and improved transport arrangements within the town will help the town and Scotland’s visitor profile keep pace with its international competitors, whilst improving the visitor experience and quality of life for local residents, playing a key role supporting the vital national tourist industry and providing sustainable transport alternatives in a time of climate emergency."

Mark Ruskell, Mid Scotland and Fife MSP for the Scottish Greens, said: "This is excellent news, and I welcome the development of this important project. It’s clear there is a growing traffic problem in St Andrews, and a rail link would be one of the most significant ways to get many of these cars off the road.

"Visitors the world over come to enjoy the town’s ancient streets, beaches, and golf courses, not dodge traffic or battle for parking spaces. The case for change report shows small tweaks like more buses simply don’t cut it when it comes to making the town a better place to walk, cycle, visit and live.

"Credit should go to the strong campaign led by StARLink and the local community, and I’m delighted funding is in place already for the next stage, thanks to the work of the Scottish Green MSPs during recent budget negotiations.

"Communities know the best way to address local transport and environmental problems, it’s important we continue to support them to develop their own solutions."

Local councillor and campaigner Jane Ann Liston says many people head to St Andrews for leisure:

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