Stirling-London train service given go-ahead

The UK’s Office of Rail and Road (ORR) said it has given the go-ahead for Grand Union Trains, an open access operator, to start a new train service between London Euston and Stirling from June 2025.

“ORR’s decision will offer more choice to passengers, bring private sector investment to the railway and increase competition,” said the ORR.

Grand Union Trains will introduce four new return services per day between London Euston and Stirling stations.

These services will also call at Milton Keynes Central, Nuneaton, Crewe, Preston, Carlisle, Lockerbie, Motherwell, Whifflet, Greenfaulds and Larbert.

Larbert, Greenfaulds and Whifflet will receive their first direct services to London.

“ORR found that the proposed services would increase choice for passengers, significantly increasing direct journey opportunities to and from London and central and southern Scotland, while making use of existing capacity on the network,” said the ORR.

“The new services will be the first run by an open access operator on the West Coast Mainline.

“Open access operators run services independently of government funding as they do not have a franchise agreement with government.

Stephanie Tobyn, ORR Director, Strategy, Policy and & Reform, said: “Our decision helps increase services for passengers and boost competition on Britain’s railway network.

“By providing more trains serving new destinations, open access operators offer passengers more choice in the origin and price of their journey leading to better outcomes for rail users.”