Those who are regulars to the ScotRail HST thread will know of my love hate relationship with the Aberdeenshire locals that were introduced in 2018 to provide a regular hourly service between Montrose and Inverurie, calling all stations in between. This is obviously a welcome addition to Aberdeenshire, as the whole transport system desperatley needs a lift up into the 21st century for it's rail links, as well as the need to speed up journey times on express services down to the central belt. In other words, the local services kill 2 birds with one stone in this regard. But given the issues with the HSTs in Scotland, as most members will surely be aware of by now, has resulted in a time scale which has severly detrimented the amount of diesel rolling stock available. More 170s and 158s going off lease than HSTs working their services, and more HSTs breaking down than 170s and 158s ever did. The list goes on, but I won't exhaust them any more on here than what they currently have been for 3 years on the HST thread already!! Long story short, Scotland's intercity routes are facing a capacity crisis as a result of the shambles of a HST introduction. When pointing at where capacity can be allocated from elsewhere, no other services merrit the chop more than the Aberdeenshire locals. Anyone familiar with these services will be aware of a sizeable number of 40 minute turnbacks, multiple ECS runs, low patronage, and the high risk of central belt based staff getting caught up in Aberdeenshire during disruption. I posted this in the HST thread in relation to finding capacity to cover for the current shortfall in rolling stock and reliability/crew issues; What's everyone else's view on this? With the beauty of hindsight, whilst these local services are a wonderful thing, and certainly the rail revolution promised by ScotRail years ago, isn't it a bit too much and too soon to put priority over running these services while intercity services in Scotland are facing a capacity and reliability crisis, right across the board? Though this does seem like a familiar case of 'if they could, they would'. But then again, it's ScotRail we're talking about!