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Clarity on Leuchars Footbridge Funding

Updated: Feb 20, 2023

Wendy Chamberlain has secured clarity from the UK Government and Scottish governments over their roles in deciding funding for a replacement footbridge at Leuchars railway station. The bridge’s ramps do not meet current accessibility standards.

The footbridge at Leuchars station is the only way for passengers to access the platforms, but despite this the ramps are now steeper than current standards for wheelchair access. ScotRail advises passengers who need to use the ramps to avoid the station.

A replacement for the bridge could be funded under the UK Government’s ‘Access for All’ scheme which provides funding for stations without accessible entry routes. £350 million of funding will become available next year, with stations being selected based on a range of factors including footfall.

Wendy Chamberlain raised the issue in the House of Commons today with rail minister Kevin Foster. He confirmed that accessibility at railway stations is a reserved matter and the UK Government has the final decision.

The Scottish transport minister Jenny Gilruth confirmed in a letter to Ms Chamberlain that nominations of Scottish stations must go through Transport Scotland and be approved by Scottish Ministers. In a previous letter the Scottish Government had not acknowledged its role and insisted it was a matter for the UK Government.

Wendy Chamberlain said:

“After some ping pong between the UK and Scottish governments over who was responsible for deciding the funding, I am glad that that the issue has been clarified.

“Leuchars is the third-busiest station in Fife. It provides a connection to St Andrews and for passengers from many other surrounding communities. It should be accessible to everyone, with a footbridge that meets modern standards.

“Next year’s ‘Access for All’ funding is a crucial opportunity to secure a replacement bridge. I will continue to press both the UK and Scottish governments to make this a priority.”


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