Levenmouth Rail Link reopens as June timetable changes reshuffle United Kingdom rail service patterns

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Monday, June 3, 2024

Scottish First Minister John Swinney at Cameron Bridge last month.
Image: Scottish Government.

On Sunday, the June National Rail timetable change went into effect, seeing changes to services across the rail network in Great Britain, including the reopening of passenger service along the 10 kilometre (6.2 mi) Levenmouth Rail Link between Leven, Fife and Thornton North Junction for the first time since the service's withdrawal in 1969.

Two new stations at Leven and Cameron Bridge were built, now seeing an hourly service to Edinburgh via Kirkcaldy, operated by ScotRail.

The redevelopment, delivered by Network Rail, cost £116 million (US$148 million). It was opened by the First Minister of Scotland, John Swinney on May 29; however, service did not start until the June timetable change. The works were funded by the Scottish Government.

Both new stations feature car parks and cycle spaces, including electric vehicle charging facilities. Cameron Bridge's car park additionally features motorcycle parking spaces. Both are also described as "fully accessible" by ScotRail, including step-free access to all platforms at Leven and Cameron Bridge.

Elsewhere on the ScotRail network, service frequency has been increased between Glasgow and Alloa, Cathcart, Neilston, and Newton in the evenings with the institution of a half-hourly service.

Meanwhile, in Wales, service on the South Wales Metro has increased, with more trains running between Cardiff and Pontypridd, Caerphilly, Treherbert, Aberdare, and Merthyr Tydfil. The service frequency between Bargoed and Rhymney has also been doubled to two trains an hour.

In England, London North Eastern Railway has instituted an extra return service on Sundays between London King's Cross and Leeds. Several operators have retimed their services, including South Western Railway and Chiltern Railways.

Northern Trains have added station calls to some of their services. There are also now more four-carriage trains scheduled between Liverpool and Manchester Airport, resulting in an increase of capacity; other routes will also see an increase.

West Midlands Trains have introduced a new "semi-fast" service from Shrewsbury to Birmingham New Street, with the stopping service being diverted away from Smethwick Galton Bridge towards Bescot. Several stations along the line therefore no longer have a direct connection to Smethwick.