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Stirling and Dunfermline Railway

The Stirling-Alloa railway line reopened on 19 May, 2008, reintroducing passenger services between Stirling and Alloa for the first time in nearly 40 years. The official opening ceremony took place on Thursday 15 May 2008, with project promoter Clackmannanshire Council holding a celebratory fayre for the community on Saturday 17 May before passenger services began on Monday 19 May 2008. -

In 2003 the Scottish Parliament awarded £30 million towards the cost of reopening the 21km Stirling-Alloa-Kincardine railway line. The Stirling - Alloa - Kincardine section of the railway is to reopen to carry passengers between Alloa and Stirling and coal to Longannet Power station near Kincardine. In 2005, the Scottish Parliament's Transport Minister, Tavish Scott, announced £27.6 million of additional funding. The project contract is a joint venture between two of the UK's leading construction firms - First Engineering LTD and Edmund Nuttal Ltd. Site supervision provided by Jacobs Babtie and project management by tie Ltd.

Contractors information on -
Government Information -

The Stirling and Dunfermline Railway was opened in 1850 and closed in 1968 - - Information & History -

From the BBC - Friday, May 15, 2009

Rail link marks first full year - By Jo Perry - Central Reporter, BBC Scotland news website
Alloa train station was reopened after a 40-year break. More than twice the number of commuters are using the new Alloa rail link than predicted, latest figures from Transport Scotland have revealed. The 13-mile stretch of track is marking its first year in operation since being reopened after a break of 40 years. Since May 2008, more than 400,000 passengers have used the service, far in excess of the 155,000 predicted. The huge number of commuters using the train has prompted ScotRail to boost the number of its services. From next week, a new Edinburgh rush-hour commuter service will begin operation, in addition to the trains already running between Stirling and Glasgow. The fantastic response from passengers over the first year of services from Alloa demonstrates how worthwhile this project has been. Transport Minister Stewart Stevenson, who last year attended the reopening celebration for the track, said customer projections had exceeded all expectations. He said: "The fantastic response from passengers over the first year of services from Alloa demonstrates how worthwhile this project has been. "Reconnecting Alloa to the rail network after a gap of 40 years has provided new education and employment opportunities for communities across Central Scotland and has played an important role in creating sustainable economic growth for the area."The line's popularity has also led to studies to assess the feasibility of extending it across Fife and into Edinburgh. The route was shut in 1968 as part of the controversial cost-cutting measures by then British Railways chairman Richard Beeching. However, a £35m plan to reinstate the line to Longannet power station in 2005, saw costs mushroom to over £85m and the reopening delayed until 2008. Those behind the plan are hopeful it will change the fortunes of Clackmannanshire which has seen the decline of its coal, brewing, textile and paper industries. Despite its success, the reinstatement of the track has also brought problems for some locals. Before the line was reopened, freight carriers used the roads network to transport Longannet's coal. However, huge coal wagons now transport their cargo during night freight runs along the line. The issue has affected householders in Falkirk, Stirling and Clackmannanshire who have complained of their properties shaking and the noise waking them. The area's politicians have vowed to work with Network Rail and freight carrier DB Shenker to address the issue.


From The Daily Mail - Friday, June 12, 2009

Residents demand pay-out over night trains on new railway line by George Mair
People living next to a recently opened railway line could get millions of pounds in compensation due to noise and vibration from trains, it was revealed yesterday. Clackmannanshire Council, the local authority responsible for building the £85 million, 13-mile Stirling-Alloa-Kincardine railway-line, has received 27 formal claims for compensation. Residents claim that, since the line opened just over a year ago, they have been forced to live with noisy freight trains running at night. They say that they have been deprived of sleep and their properties have lost value. Complaints to the council have increased since 24-wagon trains taking coal to Longannet power station near Kincardine, Fife, were diverted from the Forth Bridge to run past homes alongside the line in December. The services were part of a 24-hour timetable, despite pledges to the public that no trains would operate between 11 pm and 6 am Mid-Scotland and Fife labour MSP Dr Richard Simpson said, 'Transport Scotland implicitly said that there would be no night trains. I think that they really have misled the public. That's what's most shocking." But a spokesman for Transport Scotland said, ' The operation of freight services and the timing of these is a matter for the rail industry and lies outwith Transport Scotland's remit.' Transport Minister Stewart Stevenson has admitted compensation may be payable to residents whose properties have been devalued. Clackmannanshire Council would not disclose the value of the claims it is currently dealing with but industry sources said tit was likely to run into millions of pounds.


From 'Stirling - The Royal Burgh' by Craig Mair - John Donald Publishers LTD, 138 St Stephen Street, Edinburgh EH3 5AA ISBN 0-85976-420-6

By 1861 Stirling had grown into a small but solid Victorian town of 11,477 people. This contrasts markedly with a population of 8868 in 1841 but the principle reason for the growth is not difficult to find - the railways came to Stirling. A line already ran from Edinburgh to Glasgow and for a time regular stage coaches from Stirling connected with the stations at Falkirk for Edinburgh, and Castlecary for Glasgow. On 1st March 1848, however, the Scottish Central Railway opened a line from Glasgow to Stirling, followed by continuation to Perth on 22nd May. Other lines soon followed: the Striling and Dunfermline Railway in 1852, and the Forth and Clyde Railway to Buchlyvie and Balloch in 1856. By then you could travel to Glasgow in one hour, Edinburgh in one hour and twenty minutes, and London in thirteen hours, sometimes in just ten.

Journey Times by Coach and Horses.
Distance Year and Journey Time scheduled
Inverness to Edinburgh (Lord Lovat) 160 miles 1742 - 11 days with 3 broken axles one off!
Glasgow _ Edinburgh - 46 miles 46 miles 1749 - 12 hours  
Glasgow _ Edinburgh - 46 miles 46 miles 1799 - 6 hours  
Edinburgh - London   1749 - a fortnight once a month
Edinburgh - London   1799 - 60 hours twice per day

By 1814 there were two coaches daily to Edinburgh (from Stirling), and two more to Glasgow (one passing through Stirling to Perth). By 1835 steamships had captured the trade between Stirling and Edinburgh, except in winter when two coaches still ran, but there were nine daily coaches to Glasgow, four to Perth, two to Alloa, and one to Callander (except in winter when there were only three a week).

The improvements in journey times were due to the improvements in roads. Statute Roads were maintained by the statute labour system, whereby, local tenants were supposed to do 6 days roadmending work, filling potholes or wheel-barrowing gravel for the surface. This never worked well; everyone who could, avoided this duty by simply not turning up or paying someone else to do it for him. As a result roads were generally rough and travel difficult. The first turnpike roads appeared around Edinburgh in 1714. These were well built roads, properly maintained by a trust or committe, for which travelers paid a sliding scale of charges according to their method of transport. Each road required a separate Act of Parliament - by 1844 three hundred and fifty Acts had been passed setting up trusts all over the country. Slowly communications improved. In 1749, a coach service was started between Glasgow and Edinburgh. The forty-six mile journey took twelve hours. By 1799 the journey time had been reduced to six hours. The service between Edinburgh and London ran twice a day instead of once a month, and took sixty hours instead of a fortnight.