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Azuma will drive switch from air to rail for Anglo-Scottish travel

Published 31 July 2019 by Transform Scotland

We’re pleased to welcome the introduction of passenger services to Scotland, as from Thursday 1 August, on LNER’s new Azuma trains.

Transform Scotland rail spokesperson Paul Tetlaw said:

Azuma on a trial run to Waverley, March 2018, with LNER MD David Horne.

“We’re delighted to see the new Azumas on the East Coast Main Line. They follow in a fine tradition of trains for this premier route between Scotland and London.

“Currently only around a third of journeys between Central Scotland and London are by rail with the majority still by air.

“The new trains will be quicker and offer more seats, and we’re confident that Azuma will make a critical contribution to driving the switch from air to rail for Anglo-Scottish travel.

“Indeed, it is essential that transport emissions are reduced if we are to meet our climate change targets and that means shifting travel away from both the car and the plane to more sustainable modes.

“Unfortunately, while the trains are built to run at 140mph and will operate in electric mode south of Edinburgh it will be quite different for those heading north to Aberdeen and Inverness. Here the maximum speed is 100mph and the trains will operate largely in diesel mode. It’s now time for the Scottish Government bring our railways north of the Central Belt up to 21st century standards. Billions of pounds are being spent on dualling roads yet no similar investment is planned for the railways. That is the wrong set of priorities for transport investment and will not deliver the required modal shift in Scotland.”

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