More seats for commuters on North Berwick line

The introduction of brand-new class 385 electric trains from December will deliver an improved experience for East Lothian commuters.

The key improvements at a glance:

  • Half of North Berwick to Edinburgh services will have 6 carriages
  • 08:07 from Prestonpans to Edinburgh will now have 4 carriages
  • 07:55 from North Berwick to Edinburgh will now have 6 carriages
  • 17:43 from Haymarket to North Berwick will now have 6 carriages
  • More than 1,500 additional seats each day between North Berwick and Edinburgh

Michael Matheson, Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity said:

“These changes mark the first significant phase of timetable improvements on Scotland’s railways with £475 million being invested in rolling stock during this franchise, introducing faster, longer, greener trains.”

Take a peek at peak times

Have you ever wondered what ‘peak’ and ‘off peak’ times are on the Edinburgh – North Berwick railway line?

Unable to find an answer on their website, I tweeted Scotrail:

I didn’t find the information on the National Rail Enquiries website particularly easy to read so thought it might be helpful to set out the information clearly below:

Station

PEAK

OFF- PEAK
NBW 06:07 06:47 07:17 07:55 08:45 09:27
DRM 06:14 06:54 07:25 08:03 08:53 09:34
LND 06:20 07:00 07:31 08:09 08:58 09:40
PST 06:25 07:05 07:36 08:07 08:14 09:03 09:45
WAF 06:28 07:08 07:40 08:10 08:18 09:06 09:48
MUB 06:32 07:12 07:44 08:16 08:22 09:10 09:52
Station

OFF- PEAK

PEAK

OFF- PEAK
EDB

16:42

17:15

17:48

18:14

So, in a nutshell, if you’re heading to Edinburgh in the morning, the first off-peak train is the one that leaves North Berwick at 09:27.  Coming back to East Lothian from Edinburgh, there are two peak trains: 17:15 and 17:48.  Weekends are always off-peak.

Hope this helps but please remember, this is only my interpretation of the current timetable, if you need additional information please contact Scotrail.

ScotRail Alliance to confirm improvements in East Lothian

The ScotRail Alliance will confirm how they are improving rail services for customers in East Lothian at a public meeting on Thursday evening (03 May).

The most recent figures show the level of service on the North Berwick route has improved in recent months, with 94.1 per cent of ScotRail trains meeting their target arrival time, having stopped at all scheduled stations. This is up by 10 per cent from the most challenging period last year.

And, over the past twelve weeks, just one in almost 3,000 services to run on the route missed a stop in order to prevent disruption spreading across the network.

More carriages are also heading to services in East Lothian: a number of trains on the route already have six carriages, following a trial early last year that has since been made permanent. By the end of the year, the majority of peak-time trains between North Berwick and Edinburgh are expected to have six carriages.

Once the new Hitachi Class 385 trains enter service, these will be introduced on the Edinburgh to Glasgow Queen Street via Falkirk High route, followed by the North Berwick route.

This announcement comes ahead of a public meeting on rail services in East Lothian which will take place in Prestonpans Town Hall, on Thursday 3 May at 7pm where leaders from the ScotRail Alliance will meet customers, as well as Martin Whitfield MP and Iain Gray MSP.

Phil Campbell, ScotRail’s Head of Customer Operations, who will be at the meeting said:

“Along with ScotRail Alliance colleagues, I’m looking forward to meeting with our customers in Prestonpans, answering their questions about the service we provide and the improvements we will be making.

“We know that East Lothian is an exceptionally popular place to live, and there’s an ever-growing demand for our services to and from Edinburgh.

“With that in mind, we are doing all we can to ensure everyone has a comfortable journey. By the end of this year, even more of our customers will be able to benefit from longer trains with more seats and better services.”