Extra trains for Edinburgh Festival

EXTRA trains are being put on between Berwick and Edinburgh by operator East Coast during the Edinburgh Festival.

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 7th July 2010, 11:49 am
Updated Wednesday, 7th July 2010, 11:50 am

The extra late night service will run on Friday and Saturday nights during five weekends beginning on Friday, August 6.

The trains will leave Edinburgh at 11.45pm, calling at Dunbar at 12.05am, and will arrive in Berwick at 12.38am.

On the final weekend of the festival, there will also be a late night train on Sunday, September 5 to enable locals to enjoy the famous fireworks display before travelling home on the train at 11.45pm. This will stop at Dunbar at 12.05am and arrive at Berwick at 12.30am.

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A spokesperson from East Coast said: "This special 'festival' service has been specifically introduced to give a late night train back from Edinburgh throughout the Edinburgh festivals and Edinburgh Millitary Tattoo.

"Many of the most popular festival shows are on later at night and the departure time of 11.45pm will allow people in East Lothian and Berwick to enjoy a late evening out at the festival without the inconvenience of bringing their car or having to make an overnight stay in Edinburgh."

Miles Gregory, chief executive of The Maltings Theatre and Arts Centre in Berwick, had been pushing for the extra service to be introduced.

He said: "This is a welcome move which plugs Berwick back into the largest arts festival in the world. The Maltings is currently working with partners to develop plans to draw Edinburgh and international audiences for a satellite festival in Berwick, so this is another step in the right direction.

"Thank-you East Coast for listening to the people of the town - and I hope that this could be a start towards improving late night services to Berwick from Edinburgh and Newcastle in general."

*Annual major engineering work by Network Rail this autumn will see buses replace trains between Newcastle and Edinburgh.

From Saturday, September 11, there will be no trains serving Berwick or Dunbar on four consecutive Saturdays, with services through both stations suspended until 3pm on the Sundays, until October 3.

The long term project, which is now in its sixth year, involves overhead line, signalling and track works.

In addition to the replacement bus service, one train per hour will operate in each direction between Newcastle and Edinburgh, but these will be diverted via Carlisle, with normal journey times extended by approximately 1 hour 45 minutes.