TRAINS connecting Scotland’s main cities are running at dramatically slower average speeds than those in the South East of England, new research has shown.
Services from London travel on average between 65 to 93mph, but one Scottish route – between Edinburgh and Perth – trains managed to hit just 25mph on average.
Scotland’s flagship service, the Edinburgh to Glasgow express route, meanwhile, saw trains travel at an average rate of just 51mph.
Research carried out by the Press Association looked at the quickest possible Friday services between certain major UK towns and cities.
It worked out the average speed by analysing the distance as the crow flies between key destinations and the rail journey time.
It showed the 13.34 Edinburgh to Perth service, covering a distance of 32 miles, took 76 minutes. It showed an average speed of only 25mph.
The 9.28am Edinburgh to Dundee service was only marginally better, covering the 37 miles between the two cities at an average rate of 34mph.
Meanwhile the 51mph average speed for Scotrail’s busy Edinburgh to Glasgow service works out at around 40 per cent slower than the fastest route identified by the research, between London Paddington and Reading.
Trains on that service cover the 37 miles between the two stations in 24 minutes, working out at an average of 93mph.
The slowest route featured in the study was Liverpool Central to Chester, which takes 41 minutes to make the 14-mile journey (as the crow flies) at 20mph.
But while there is a dramatic difference between the fastest and slowest averages, passengers travelling from London to other major destinations often have the choice of non-stop trains which automatically results in lower journey times.
Many of the slowest routes featured are only served by trains with multiple stops.
Allison Cosgrove, chair of campaign group Railfuture Scotland, warned that comparing certain non-stop London routes with multiple stop journeys in Scotland was like “apples and pears”.
She said: “If you are travelling between Edinburgh and Perth, and making stops at a number of stations on the way – particularly on a week day when it’s probably used by a lot of commuters – then it is not going to be the same as a high speed service that has no stops.