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ScotRail fund to ‘breathe new life’ into derelict railway stations

ScotRail and Transport Scotland have launched a £1.5m ‘Stations Community Regeneration Fund’ to regenerate old and disused railway station buildings.

The fund, launched yesterday, should let business and community groups transform disused station rooms into “locally relevant facilities” during the 10-year Abellio ScotRail franchise.

Grants from the community fund will be awarded in chunks of between £5,000 and £75,000 to projects that will benefit communities or rail passengers. Requests for larger sums will need in-depth feasibility studies.

Phil Vester, ScotRail Alliance managing director, said: “We believe the Stations Community Regeneration Fund will make a real difference to customers and people living near stations – opening up social opportunities, restoring disused premises, and creating jobs.

“I encourage any community groups or businesses who think they can improve their local station to get in touch with ScotRail to discuss how the fund could help turn their ideas into reality.”

The fund will be managed and administered by ScotRail but applications will be jointly assessed with Transport Scotland.

Grants can also be used to contribute towards structural repairs and assists with the costs of fitting-out station buildings.

Keith Brown MSP, cabinet secretary for infrastructure, investment and cities, said the fund will prove both effective and positive news for local railway stations in Scotland, as well as the communities they serve.

“I have visited a number of these projects in the past and have seen first-hand how effective this model of funding has been for securing access to new premises for local businesses and community groups.

“Using formerly derelict buildings also breathes new life into Scotland’s stations, improving the rail experience for passengers around the country.”

Applications will be evaluated on how relevant they are to the existing building, businesses and local area, how they meet a community or market demand, and what benefits can be expected from the idea.

To apply for a grant, visit the ScotRail application website.

(Top image c. Alex Drennan)


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