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Parliamentary Debates and Questions

S5W-14959: John Finnie (Highlands and Islands)

Scottish Green Party

Date lodged: 1 March 2018

To ask the Scottish Government what regard there is in its existing rail contacts for the carriage of pedal cycles, and what assessment it has made of whether the existing and projected needs of cyclists are being met.

Answered by: Humza Yousaf 14 March 2018

The ScotRail Franchise Agreement requires that, so far as is reasonably practical and subject to the availability of appropriate space on trains, ScotRail ensure that reasonable facilities for the transport of bicycles is made available, to passengers. It is also a requirement of the ScotRail Franchise Agreement that staff are fully aware of cycle capacity and policies at stations and on trains, and that staff performance in this regard is monitored to ensure that cyclists are advised and accommodated appropriately. ScotRail are also required to ensure that their trains include a bicycle storage area with space for the storage of at least two bicycles in a dedicated area adjacent to an entrance vestibule.

Transport Scotland has reached agreement with ScotRail to increase the number of spaces available at intermediate stations from 2 to 4, with 6 spaces (3 per power car) available for end to end journeys on the HSTs which are planned to be introduced into service in the latter part of 2018.

The Caledonian Sleeper Franchise Agreement requires that, so far as is reasonably practical and subject to the availability of appropriate space on sleeper trains, Caledonian Sleeper ensure that reasonable facilities for the transport of bicycles on sleeper trains are made available, at no extra charge.

A study (Train2Ride), commissioned by HITRANS, and part funded by Transport Scotland, was conducted in July 2017 to establish the existing level of demand for on-train cycle carriage on ScotRail services on the West Highland line and on Serco Caledonian Sleeper services to Inverness and Fort William, and identify future trends and options for a managing the demand.