SCOTRAIL customers in Clackmannanshire will benefit from an increased number of services from Monday, August 3. 

The train operator is adding an additional 16 trains between Alloa and Glasgow, bringing the timetable to a half-hourly service for most of the day.

Customers will also see the introduction of additional peak services between Stirling and Glasgow Queen Street.

The increase in services had been planned for May and was postponed due to the introduction of an emergency timetable at the height of the Coronavirus pandemic.

Customers will see further improvements to the timetable next year, when ScotRail plans to run a half-hourly service to and from Alloa all day.

Next week’s change will also see a wider increase to services across the country, where more than 90 per cent of normal services will operate.

All routes will have normal early morning, late night, morning and evening peak services. One hundred per cent of normal capacity will be provided during peak travel hours, although many seats will need to remain empty to maintain physical distancing.

The increase in services comes ahead of the expected reopening of schools on August 11, which could result in an increase in the number of people travelling on ScotRail services.

ScotRail services are available for commuting and leisure travel.

However, whilst capacity is limited by physical distancing, people are asked to consider alternative travel options where possible, including walking and cycling, to free up space for those who have no choice but to travel by train.

For those who do travel on ScotRail services, the operator is asking customers to continue to follow its five rules for safer travel and take personal responsibility:

1. Do not travel if you feel unwell or have a temperature.

2. Travel away from the main commuting times (0700 – 0900 and 1600 – 1830) wherever possible, as trains will be busiest around then. The earliest and latest trains serve key workers, like NHS and care home staff.

3. If you think it’s not safe to board a train, don’t do it and wait for another service.

4. Wear a face mask or covering and, where possible, maintain physical distancing.

5. Be patient. You might not be able to board your first choice of train, as physical distancing means most seats need to be left empty.

A number of measures have been introduced in recent weeks to keep staff and passengers safe, including the provision of hand sanitiser and face masks at the busiest stations in the country. Face coverings are mandatory at stations and on trains.

Platform markings and guidance at ticket vending machines are supporting station announcements and messages on customer information screens, to help customers during their journey.

Customers are reminded to buy in advance of travel via the ScotRail app, website, or station facilities to ensure waiting times are reduced and physical distancing supported.  All customers must hold a valid ticket before boarding a train.

In recent days, Scotland’s Railway announced a move to a minimum of one metre physical distancing on trains and at stations, which came into effect on Monday, July 27.

ScotRail Head of Business Development Scott Prentice said: “We have been working closely with key stakeholders in the area to understand how ScotRail can better serve local business and communities, now and in the future.

"We are delighted that we will be able to provide a boost for people travelling in Clackmannanshire.

“We hope this positive change will help the local community as we progress through the Scottish Government’s Roadmap to Recovery.

“More regular trains will mean more seats and more choice, providing greater flexibility for customers.”