Concerns about a lack of trains stopping in Mearns towns are being “completely disregarded” by rail bosses, an MP has claimed.
West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine Conservative Andrew Bowie said he has been left “extremely frustrated” by the lack of response from ScotRail to issues around services travelling via Stonehaven and Laurencekirk.
The creation of an interchange station at Montrose in December allowed for more local services to operate at such stations, meaning daily services at Stonehaven increasing from 50 to 71, more than 5,000 extra seats each day.
It also resulted in daily services at Laurencekirk increasing from 24 to 40 since December but under the new timetable changes, there are no trains to the Central Belt stopping at Laurencekirk.
Passengers in Stonehaven are expected to travel to Montrose and then change trains onto the main Glasgow service.
He Bowie previously asked Alex Hynes, ScotRail managing director,for an explanation and warning of any changes that could be made in the future.
In a follow-up letter, he states: “The lack of action on this, and the failure to even respond to my initial letters, smacks of a complete disregard for residents who live on the East Coast Main Line in settlements between Aberdeen and Montrose.
“I previously requested a meeting with yourself to discuss this situation and what can be done to resolve it.
“I have since attended a public meeting on this matter where, again, I requested a meeting to discuss further.
“During that public meeting, held in Laurencekirk, promises were made by Scotrail to the public, namely that Scotrail would report back to the community with an action plan for moving forward.
“To this date there has been no reporting back, nor to my knowledge has there been an action plan worked up.”
At a heated meeting at Mearns Community Campus in Laurencekirk in June, ScotRail management faced claims that the north-east was “getting left behind”.
A ScotRail spokesperson said: “It’s important for us continue to engage with stakeholders and local politicians, gaining valuable feedback from their constituents.
“The improvements made to our timetable last December were another milestone as we work to provide better services for Scotland’s railway.
“This was just the first phase of the work we are doing to deliver for our customers in the north-east.”