A massive artwork on wheels has been unveiled to promote the new Borders Railway throughout the country.
With six months to go until the new railway opens, infrastructure secretary Keith Brown revealed the 70-metre long train wrapped in specially-designed livery to promote some of the top attractions of those areas served by the new railway.
The livery has been designed to catch the eye of train-loving kids and rail enthusiasts as the three-carriage Class 170 travels between Scotland’s seven cities and it features illustrations of Edinburgh Zoo’s pandas, Midlothian’s Rosslyn Chapel and Scottish Borders scenery.
Unveiling the train at Edinburgh’s Waverley Station, Mr Brown said: “The Borders Railway is one of the Scottish Government’s biggest infrastructure projects and the longest domestic railway to be built in the UK in over a hundred years.
“The communities of the Scottish Borders, Midlothian and Edinburgh will all benefit from the new work, study and social opportunities. But we also want to maximise the benefits by bringing people from all over Scotland to use this new line.
“This train will enter normal service in the ScotRail fleet and will operate between Scotland’s cities, exposing the Borders Railway to many more people throughout the country.”
The Borders Railway will become operational for passengers in September. Construction of the 30-mile line is scheduled to be complete by June, when Network Rail will hand it over to ScotRail for 12 weeks of driver training ahead of the grand opening.
Scottish Borders Council leader, Councillor David Parker, said: “These are exciting times for the Scottish Borders. For the first time in over 40 years our visitors will be able to visit us by train and will arrive a stone’s throw from spectacular attractions such as Sir Walter Scott’s house, Melrose Abbey and the Tweed Valley Forest Park – home of world-class mountain biking.”