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Discussion in 'Infrastructure & Stations' started by furnessvale, 16 Aug 2017.
Is anyone able to give a progress (if any) report on this new siding?
Last time I passed that way was in April and there wasn't any visible sign of any work going on.
Was up there at the weekend and nothing appears to have changed. Is it definitely happening, I know there was the trial but not seen anything concrete to say that it was to be developed permanently particularly given the awkward operating layout.
Full plans were prepared and planning permission was obtained after a huge struggle.
Mind you, this was in conjunction with an expansion of the factory side of things. It wouldn't surprise me if the railway is quietly dropped now they have built their bigger factory.
Ah well. The good residents of Blackford, who objected to the sidings, can look forward to many more 44tonnes HGVs passing right through the centre of the village!
I pass Blackford several times a week and I think that I would've noticed if any work was getting done. I reckon it's a goner.
I wonder if the people campaigning against the siding were the same ones demanding reinstatement of the station a few years back?
I've looked through the planning application for the expansion of the factory and can't see any reference or mention of a rail loading facility in there?
Discussion on Scotrail forum indicates that work is to start next year so perhaps there is still hope.
Why oh why do rail schemes take so long?
Updated planning permission passed on 28th September with work starting this year to be completed by end 2019.
Scotrail have just forwarded a tweet showing work on the site.
According to this article it will be ready by 2021.
As far as I tell, Highland’s facility seems to entail the recommissioning an existing siding facility:
That is most definitely a move in the right direction!
Whilst the site has an old out of use siding, I think this scheme is rather more than a simple recommissioning. There appears to be run round facilities, container handling and storage pads on site.
I note the following paragraph quoted in post #10:
"A fully electric rubber-tyre crane will lift and position containers on the train, and Highland Spring is exploring opportunities to bring raw materials to site by rail which will further reduce their carbon footprint."
The part I've bolded intrigues me: what raw materials (apart from bottles) would a spring water company need?!
It will be bottles and packaging materials on an ongoing basis, but I think they're referring to the materials needed during construction.
The best part of 5 YEARS to organise a siding!
It's not just a siding, it's a freight depot (even though it's dedicated to a single user).
Ok a bit of hard standing, maybe even a transit shed - but still - 5 YEARS!
What hope is there in Scotland for a meaningful expansion of rail freight at this woeful rate of progress?
Not only for Scotland but the whole UK.
How many years have the proposed railfreight depots at Four Ashes (Wolverhampton) and St Albans been held up by objection after objection? Every MP wants more freight on rail.......as long as the depot is in someone else's constituency.
The works by network rail were completed in a blockade some time ago (? early this year). Any delay now is down to Highland Spring.
Blame (or thank) the planning system for a large part of that delay.
I believe thay have only recently been awarded the grant aid that was part of the deal.
If Scottish grant aid is anything like the now defunct section 8 aid in England, any start of work before the award meant that the grant was forfeited.
Well whoever is to blame, and I'm sure you're right, the end result is that there's little chance of rail freight ever expanding in Scotland unless there's a revolution in thinking in the rail industry backed up by government commitment to smooth the path of development.
Don't worry, renationalising will make things run like silk!
The rail industry has already done its bit. It's over to Highland Spring now.
Im sure it will be worth the wait. Always good to see freight moving over to rail.