ScotRail , or as they are better known, ScotFail have continued to cause problems for commuters from Dumbarton, Balloch and Helensburgh this year. We know that there have been ongoing problems with our train lines since October, and despite repeated promises from Abellio ScotRail that they are doing everything they can to make their service better, nothing seems to have changed. Trains are still delayed and cancelled regularly and they continue to provide a 3 carriage service on peak time trains so that passengers are being squashed into carriages like sardines.

In December, there were timetable changes and ScotRail promised that trains travelling from Helensburgh and Balloch would be six carriages, especially at peak times. This has simply not happened. Instead it standing room only by the time the train gets to Dumbarton. And passengers are being asked to pay even more for the pleasure of cramming into a carriage and for increasingly poor service. Despite the issue being raised repeatedly in the Scottish Parliament, the Transport Secretary has turned a blind eye, letting ScotRail off the hook by not taking any enforcement action for poor performance.

I am nothing if not determined so I raised this issue, once again, in the Scottish Parliament. The Transport Secretary blamed the late-delivery of new rolling stock for passengers being provided with a poor service, but we don’t have new rolling stock on the line. It is the single transferable excuse and it is simply not good enough. Instead of putting passengers first, and implementing a fare freeze until the problems are rectified, the Scottish Government has allowed ScotRail to hike up fares. Both ScotRail and the Scottish Government are remarkably similar. Both operate on the basis of asking us to pay more, whilst delivering less.

Many people have reluctantly taken to their cars because the service is so unreliable, but watch out, the SNP and Greens seem intent on bringing in a workplace parking fee. Maybe we should all work from home!