There are two arterial routes to Scotland by rail.
If you travel to Scotland from London or the south east of England, the train brings you up the east coast to Edinburgh and for those who wish to travel west, it continues to a final stop at Glasgow.
Should you wish to travel from Cornwall, Devon or Somerset to Scotland the route is up the west coast to Glasgow.
Now the Westminster government and the rail industry have decided that the London/Edinburgh/Glasgow east coast main line service is to be axed. From 2010 all trains will stop at Edinburgh. Those wishing to travel to Glasgow will be required to change trains, thus taking the clock back years. The East Coast Main Line Glasgow/London was fought hard for by many rail travellers and it must be distressing to see it return to the old days when the east and west were firmly divided.
The problem arises in the lack of a service from Glasgow to the north of England and such destinations as Newcastle, York and Doncaster could be affected. Unconfirmed reports suggest that Arriva Cross Country could take up the 'slack' under the new timetable by extending its service it operated from Glasgow along part of the East Coat Main Line as far as York.
That would leave only destinations in the south-east of England without a direct connection to Glasgow.
The news comes three days after the Department for Transport said a government-owned company, trading as East Coast, would take over operation of train services next Friday from National Express who stated in the summer they wanted to relinquish the contract.
John Mason, the SNP MP for Glasgow East:
'... the changes revealed Labour’s “hypocrisy” on rail following criticism this week of the SNP’s decision to scrap the Glasgow Airport Rail Link. He added: “These plans, which have been made without any consultation, are a serious mistake and must be stopped in their tracks.”
What strange timing by the Westminster to announce cutting such a vital rail link between Scotland and London. Have they forgotten there is a by-election in Glasgow NE next week or are they so confident they will win, that Glasgow isn't important to the UK? Possibly both.