Abellio ScotRail

This article is about the train company operating since 1 April 2015. For other uses, see ScotRail.
Abellio ScotRail

Franchise(s): ScotRail
1 April 2015 - 31 March 2025
Main Region(s): Scotland
Other Region(s): Cumbria, Northumberland
Fleet size: 295 (2016)
Stations operated: 346
National Rail abbreviation: SR
Parent company: Abellio
Website: www.scotrail.co.uk

Abellio ScotRail,[1] operating services under the name ScotRail, is the national train operating company of Scotland. Abellio,[2] a subsidiary of Nederlandse Spoorwegen, has operated the ScotRail franchise since 1 April 2015.


In November 2013, Transport Scotland announced that Abellio, Arriva, FirstGroup, MTR Corporation and National Express had been shortlisted to bid for the new ScotRail franchise.[3] In October 2014, the franchise was awarded to Abellio.[4][5][6] The franchise will operate for seven years with a three-year extension available contingent on performance criteria being met.[7] Abellio began operating the franchise on 1 April 2015.

On 6 September 2015, Abellio ScotRail commenced operating services on the Borders Railway.[8]

In June 2016 the RMT union announced that train guards would be going in strike several times during the summer months in protest of more driver only trains.[9] An agreement has been made in principle, following a meeting on 19 September 2016, bringing an end to the 3-month long dispute. It has been agreed that the new Class 385 trains will have the doors controlled by both the Driver and Guard meaning the Driver will open the doors and the Guard will close them.



ScotRail routes highlighted in red

Abellio ScotRail took over all of the services operated by First ScotRail at 0200 on 1 April 2015, except for the Caledonian Sleeper services, which had been transferred to a separate franchise operated by Serco at 1400 the previous day.[10] The franchise agreement requires the introduction of 'Great Scottish Scenic Railway' trains on the West Highland, Far North, Kyle, Borders Railway and Glasgow South Western lines. Steam special services will also be promoted by Abellio ScotRail.[11]


Abellio ScotRail operates 355 stations in Scotland.[12][13] Not included are Glasgow Prestwick Airport station, owned and operated by the airport,[14] and Edinburgh Waverley and Glasgow Central, managed by Network Rail.[15] Abellio ScotRail operates Lockerbie even though none of its services call there. It took over management of Dunbar, previously operated by Virgin Trains East Coast, in June 2015.[16]


Abellio ScotRail's fleet is maintained at Edinburgh Haymarket, Glasgow Eastfield, Glasgow Shields Road, Corkerhill and Inverness as well as a newly built stabling depot at Perth Friarton.

Rolling stock

Abellio ScotRail began operations with the rolling stock below, mainly transferred from First ScotRail:[12][13]


Class Image Type Top speed Number Carriages Routes operated Built
mph km/h
Class 68 Diesel Locomotive 100 161 2 N/A Fife Circle Line 2013-14
Mk2 Coach
Passenger Carriage 100 160 12 6 1973-75
156 Super Sprinter DMU 75 120 48 2 Glasgow South Western Line, West Highland Line, Shotts Line,

Maryhill Line, Cumbernauld Line

158 Express Sprinter 90 145 48 2 Far North Line, Maryhill Line, Kyle of Lochalsh Line,

Cumbernauld Line, Shotts Line, Fife Circle Line, Highland Main Line, Borders Railway, North Berwick Line (Occasional Saturday Services to Dunbar)

Class 170 Turbostar 100 161 55 3 Croy Line, Glasgow to Edinburgh via Falkirk Line, Glasgow to Aberdeen Line, Edinburgh to Aberdeen Line,

Edinburgh to Dunblane Line, Fife Circle Line, Edinburgh Crossrail, Highland Main Line, Borders Railway, North Berwick Line (Saturday Services to Dunbar and a peak time North Berwick Service)

Class 314 EMU 75 121 16 3 Cathcart Circle Lines, Inverclyde Line, Paisley Canal Line. 1979
Class 318 90 145 21 3 North Clyde Line, Argyle Line, Whifflet Line 1986-87
Class 320 90 145 29[17] 3 North Clyde Line, Argyle Line, Whifflet Line 1990
Class 334 Juniper 90 145 40 3 North Clyde Line, Argyle Line 1999-2002
Class 380 Desiro 100 160 22 3 Ayrshire Coast Line, Inverclyde Line, North Berwick Line,

Paisley Canal Line, Argyle Line, Cathcart Circle Line

16 4


Abellio ScotRail has mentioned the following as part of the future rolling stock.

Class Image Type Top speed Number Carriages Into Service Built
mph km/h
Class 385 EMU 100 161 46 3 24 by December 2017, a further 46 by December 2018 and an option for 10 in 2023.

These new build trains will operate on the Edinburgh-Glasgow via Falkirk High line. They are also to be used on the Stirling-Alloa/Dunblane line, south Glasgow suburban routes and the Edinburgh to North Berwick/Dunbar Local services

24 4
Class 43 Diesel locomotive 125 201 54 N/A December 2018 -

On longer-distance services between Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen and Inverness.

Mark 3 Coach Passenger coach 125 201 175 4 and 5

Abellio ScotRail will introduce a brand new fleet of 46 three car and 24 four car Class 385 electric trains from December 2017, to operate services on the lines being electrified as part of the Edinburgh to Glasgow Improvement Programme, if it granted a three-year optional franchise extension, it will order a further 10 three car units.[18][19]

Abellio ScotRail will also introduce 9 four-car (2+4) and 17 five-car (2+5) refurbished High Speed Trains by December 2018 on longer-distance services between Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen and Inverness. Scotrail will receive the first locomotives and carriages late 2017, with the refurbishment program taking place at Brush Loughborough (power cars) and Wabtec Doncaster (carriages) between late 2017 and May 2019.

This new rolling stock will result in 10 Class 156, eight Class 158 and 21 (originally 34) Class 170s returning to their leasing companies.[20] 5 of the 156s released, all the 158s released and 16 of the 170s released will join Northern when their lease expires in 2018.[21] Transport Scotland has successfully negotiated a lease extension for 13 of their 170s meaning they'll be used to support services through Fife to Aberdeen and the Borders railway.[22]


  1. Companies House extract company no SC450732 Abellio ScotRail Limited
  2. "Abellio Group Head Office" Group corporate website, Abellio, Utrecht, Netherlands, Undate. Retrieved 19 June 2015.
  3. "Scotrail franchise shortlist named" BBC News 1 November 2013
  4. "Dutch firms wins ScotRail franchise from FirstGroup" BBC News 8 October 2014
  5. "Abellio awarded ScotRail franchise" Railway Gazette (London) 8 October 2014
  6. "Abellio awarded contract to operate Scotland's National Railway, ScotRail" (Press release). Abellio. n.d.
  7. Tender conditions Transport Scotland
  8. Borders railway Transport Scotland
  9. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-business-36532081
  10. "Serco wins franchise for Caledonian sleeper train service" BBC News 28 May 2014
  11. ScotRail Franchise Transport Scotland
  12. 1 2 Facts & Figures Abellio ScotRail
  13. 1 2 "ScotRail franchise facts & figures" Rail (Peterborough). Issue 759. Page 8. 15 October 2014.
  14. Station Access Application. Office of Rail Regulation.
  15. Our stations. Network Rail.
  16. ScotRail Franchise Invitation to Tender. Transport Scotland. 23 January 2014.
  17. BBC News. 14 March 2016 https://twitter.com/ScotRail/status/709390597040316417. Retrieved 18 March 2016. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  18. "Hitachi selected for Scottish EMU contract" International Railway Journal (London) 9 October 2014
  19. "Hitachi to build ScotRail EMUs". Railway Gazette (London). 10 October 2014.
  20. "Abellio takes over ScotRail" Today's Railways issue 162 June 2015 page 12
  21. http://www.transport.gov.scot/system/files/documents/tsc-basic-pages/Redacted%20Franchise%20Agreement%20-%20CU%20version.pdf
  22. http://www.rail.co.uk/rail-news/2016/scotrail-rail-revolution

External links

Media related to Abellio ScotRail at Wikimedia Commons

Preceded by
First ScotRail
ScotRail franchise
Operator of ScotRail franchise
2015 - 2025
Succeeded by
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