Stirling Food Train

Stirling Food Train


CALL US on 01786 450536

Food Train is a local charity offering support to older people who are living at home and are struggling to do their weekly grocery shop.  Friendly volunteers will help to take your order on a Monday and then shop and deliver your groceries to you on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday, providing support to put items away wherever it is needed.  We already help more than 200 older people in this area, and we are supported by a brilliant team of 50+ volunteers. This is service that provides customers with choice, and is very affordable at a cost of £4 for each delivery and £1 for your annual membership fee. We cover all Stirling Local Authority areas. 


‘Meal Makers’ is Food Train’s very own local neighbourhood food-sharing project that connects people who love cooking (cooks) and want to share an extra portion of their delicious home-cooked food with an older neighbour (diner) who would really appreciate a freshly prepared meal and a friendly chat. How often meals are shared, and when they are shared is decided between the cook and diner. No money changes hands. It is simply a donation of food between neighbours. The only cost associated with Meal Makers is a £5 annual fee for diners to become members.


If you are interested in volunteering with Food Train, either with the shopping service or as a Meal Makers cook, why don’t you give us a call on 01786 450536 or make an enquiry via our website  You can also see what we’ve been up to on our Facebook page

If you would like Food Train to attend a community council meeting please phone the office or contact Stuart Miller at

Response from Scotrail Alliance on Train Issues

Response from Scotrail Alliance on Train Issues

Response received from Alex Hynes MD of the Scotrail Alliance on 15/5/18

1. Skip Stopping

ScotRail Alliance Update

We completely accept that the practice of trains failing to stop at scheduled stations during a service (skip stopping) was previously overused. This practice enabled us to mitigate the impact of delays across the network and assist us in recovering services so we could get things back to running on time. Contrary to perception, this practice was not used to improve or massage performance figures – when a train fails to stop at any booked station, this is an automatic performance measure fail.
A reduction in skip-stopping was one of the recommendations from the Donovan Review that Alex Hynes (Managing Director, ScotRail Alliance) commissioned earlier this year. This review is now complete and all 20 of the Donovan recommendations have been accepted and are being implemented by teams across the ScotRail Alliance. These recommendations range from improvements to address infrastructure failures to enhancing the level of access to live data to support decision making.

The practice of trains failing to stop at a scheduled station has been suspended except as a last resort, for example when a station is closed or a train must divert due to an incident. If we do need to take this step, this will only happen when we have advised customers before a service departs from its origin station.

From 1 to 28 April 2018, across the entire network, 0.1% of trains failed to stop at booked stations. Since the implementation of the Donovan Review recommendations (1 April 2018) there have been no instances of skip stopping at Bridge of Allan or Dunblane with services running past these stations to onwards destinations. We remain committed to this for the above reasons unless it is an absolute last resort.

2. Early termination of services at Stirling rather than continuation to Bridge of Allan/ Dunblane

The rail line between Stirling and Dunblane has one signalling section that is several miles long. Only one train can occupy this lengthy section at any given time. During the evening peak there are often a number of trains (up to 7) timetabled to go through this signalling section within an hour. If there are delays on the network this presents us with some significant challenges – we need to identify how we can get trains through this long section without causing significant reactionary delay. To prevent trains queuing up to access this long signalling section, our integrated control team identifies how we can manage the situation. One option to enable us to recover the timetable and limit further disruption is to part cancel services at Stirling.

This is not a decision that is taken lightly. Our control centre reviews what the other travel options are for passengers, for example, if customers disembark at an earlier station how long will they need to wait for their next service. Our aim is to minimise disruption for all our customers.
As an example, the week before last, when customers for Bridge of Allan and Dunblane were required to get off the train at Stirling (which arrived at 18.07), they were able to board the train immediately behind, which was also planned to call at Bridge of Allan and Dunblane. This train arrived at Stirling station at 18.10 (3 minutes after the customers disembarked from the service that was part cancelled), then departed at 18.14. Customers were required to alight at Stirling to enable another service to run, the late running 17.11 Queen Street to Carnoustie service, which was fully loaded and already 16 minutes late. Customers on this service did not have an alternative train a few minutes later.

Whenever this happens we fully investigate the reason for the delay, to ensure we can understand the situation and take appropriate steps to reduce future occurrences.

In times of disruption we always try to keep a Dunblane service in operation as we recognise this is a very important route with high customer loadings. Our Stirling / Bridge of Allan / Dunblane customers were unfortunately affected by a number of flooding incidents at Winchburgh Junction over the winter period however much work is being done by ScotRail Alliance teams to improve resilience in this area and reduce future incidents.

We are very sorry for any service alterations and inconvenience this may cause, the decisions that we take are designed to help get the majority of our customers home on time.

3. Lack of carriages to accommodate number of passengers resulting in over-crowded and cramped conditions

Over the last few months a number of our trains have reached the end of their lifespan or lease and it was not possible to retain these units. Due to delays in new Hitachi trains arriving, this has placed some short-term constraints on our fleet. We have secured the lease of 10 electric trains as a temporary measure until the new Hitachi trains are in service. The 10 electric trains will be in operation from mid / late July, providing customers with additional capacity.

As new Hitachi trains arrive, routes such as Edinburgh – Dunblane, will benefit from these longer, greener, faster trains.

From 1 – 28 April, on the Edinburgh – Dunblane line 12 services were short formed. For the same period there were 8 services that ran the Glasgow to Dunblane line that were short formed.

In addition, to the new Hitachi electric trains, the forthcoming Revolution in Rail timetable, which will be implemented from December will fundamentally enhance our service for customers in Dunblane, Bridge of Allan and Stirling, both immediately and for future timetable changes. Customers will start to see improvements from the December 2018 timetable change. Our new timetable is designed to encourage modal shift from both the M9 and M80 corridors.
Revolution in Rail will deliver:
Dunblane – Edinburgh
 Half hourly service all day, with more services in the evening than currently
 Formed by our new electric class 385 trains – quieter, more comfortable, better on train facilities, greener
 Journey times reduce by at least 10min. compared to today – most Stirling to Edinburgh journeys will be 45min or less
 Longer trains provide 4,000 additional seats each day
 However actual capacity for Stirling area customers increases because the service will no longer call at Polmont & Linlithgow – the busiest stations on the route
 Replacement calls at Polmont and Linlithgow will be provided by a new Glasgow – Cumbernauld – Falkirk Grahamston – Edinburgh service Stirling – Glasgow
 New electric trains will operate an hourly Alloa – Glasgow and hourly Stirling – Glasgow service
 Formed by our new electric class 385 trains – quieter, more comfortable, better on train facilities, greener
 Journey times will reduce by around 5 min compared to today
 Longer trains provide 4,500 additional seats each day Dunblane – Glasgow
 New hourly service which will run non-stop between Stirling and Glasgow reducing journey time by around 10 min compared to today
 This will also provide an hourly direct service from Bridge of Allan & Dunblane to Gleneagles, Perth and Dundee
 The service will provide 3,000 more seats between these stations each weekday

Health and safety concerns

Passenger safety is our number one priority and we take a range of measures to ensure that capacity is provided to meet demand where possible. ScotRail provide passenger counts as part of the franchise contract to demonstrate that adequate capacity is being provided. The design of train coaches permits services to operate effectively and safely even when fully loaded to maximum capacity however we do realise that this can feel uncomfortable
for customers and to address this we continually monitor customer flows and adjust available resources against demand where practicable and possible.

We are very sorry for any inconvenience caused when our services are short formed and our new fleets of trains which will be introduced in the near future will increase capacity on our network.

I include a link to the ORR’s approach to station and train crowding for your information:

Text alerts do not always advise of trains having a reduced number of carriages

ScotRail do not issue text alerts for short formations, only for cancellations or route disruption. If there is an alteration for a service that is already short formed, the number of carriages would be detailed in the update.
All short formations are inputted into our app and if a customer searches their station on the live/next departures section it will bring up all incidents of short formations. We are working towards push messaging (similar to Facebook alerts) that will strengthen communication to customers about these sort of issues.…/passen…/our-role-in-relation-to-station-and-train-crowding

4. Dissatisfaction with regard to the standard of service provided by ScotRail to passengers using their services to these destinations In the last National Rail Passenger Survey – which was carried out in autumn 2017 – 85 per cent of ScotRail customers said they were satisfied with ScotRail. This is an increase from 83 per cent at the same point last year. This placed ScotRail above the UK average, which stood at 81 per cent and meant that ScotRail had the best customer satisfaction score of the largest train operating companies in the UK.

We are committed to continuing to improve our passenger experience and once our new Hitachi and InterCity trains are in place, we will deliver 40% more capacity for our customers on trains that will transform how customers travel. This £475 million investment will deliver comfortable seats, free Wi-Fi, usb and power sockets, and a better food and drink offer.

We know that things do go wrong from time to time and our frontline teams work on services and in stations each day, and are there to support our customers and listen to feedback. Our managers travel the route and carry out assessments on a regular basis. Each carriage is now fitted with a unique identification number and any complaints can be reported to our helpline so we can address these.

In Scotland we adhere to the most rigorous Service Quality Incentive Regime (SQUIRE) across the entire GB rail network. We work with Transport Scotland to ensure we maintain high standards on our stations and trains. All of our stations and trains are checked every four weeks, and any faults or areas for improvement are reported and repaired.

 We check our stations to make sure lights are on when required, stations and shelters are clean and free from litter, and seats are safe to sit on
 We check our trains to make sure seats are clean and safe, there’s a comfortable ambient temperature and toilets are available for customer use
 We work hard to ensure our stations and trains are free from graffiti. Following the most recent SQUIRE review we have identified ten priority areas and
developed detailed plans to address the key issues that caused the problems.


Scotland’s Railway is undergoing the most extensive programme of investment in this Control Period (2014 – 19) – infrastructure enhancement and electrification projects, and an extensive train upgrade and refurbishment programme continues across Scotland. Once complete customers will benefit from faster, greener, longer, more comfortable trains and enhanced station experiences. In relation to fares, the majority of these are individually regulated and set by the Scottish Ministers. ScotRail offer a range of fares and discounts, to help customers choose the best value ticket for journeys.

Community Council Privacy Policy

Community Council Privacy Policy


This policy sets out the different areas where user privacy is concerned and outlines the obligations & requirements of the users, the website and website owners. Furthermore, the way this website processes, stores and protects user data and information will also be detailed within this policy.

The website

This website and its owners take a proactive approach to user privacy and ensure the necessary steps are taken to protect the privacy of its users throughout their visiting experience. This website complies with all UK national laws and requirements for user privacy.

Personal information

Whilst using our website, software applications or services, you may be required to provide personal information (name, address, email, etc.). We will use this information to administer your subscriptions to the occasional content we may send you. We will ensure that all personal information supplied is held securely in accordance with the General Data Protection Regulation (EU) 2016/679, as adopted into law of the United Kingdom in the Data Protection Act 2018. Further, by providing email details, you consent to Bridge of Allan Community Council contacting you using that method. You have the right at any time to request a copy of the personal information we hold on you. Should you wish to receive a copy of this, or would like to be removed from our database, please contact us at

Information collection and use

How do we collect information?

Bridge of Allan Community Council collects information in the following way:

When you directly give it to us (“Directly Provided Data”)

When you sign up for newsletters from our site, or communicate with us, you may choose to voluntarily give us certain information – for example, by filling in text boxes, completing registration forms or commenting on website posts. All this information requires a direct action by you at that time in order for us to receive it.

How long do we keep your data for?

Bridge of Allan Community Council will not retain your personal information longer than necessary. We will hold onto the information you provide either while your account is in existence, or as needed to be able to provide the Services to you, or (in the case of any contact you may have with us) for as long as is necessary to provide support related reporting and trend analysis only. If legally required or if it is reasonably necessary to meet our regulatory requirements, resolve disputes or prevent fraud and abuse, we may also retain some of your information for a limited period of time as required, even after you have unsubscribed or it is no longer needed to provide the Services to you.

Newsletter Signup forms

Bridge of Allan Community Council will not sell or rent your personally identifiable information, gathered as a result of filling out the Newsletter signup form, to anyone.

Choosing how we use your data

We understand that you trust us with your personal information and we are committed to ensuring you can manage the privacy and security of your personal information yourself. With respect to the information relating to you that ends up in our possession, and recognising that it is your choice to provide us with your personally identifiable information, we commit to giving you the ability to do all of the following:

  • You can verify the details you have submitted to Bridge of Allan Community Council by clicking “Update your preferences” at the bottom of any newsletter we’ve sent you.
  • You can update your details at any point by clicking “Update your preferences” at the bottom of any newsletter we’ve sent you.
  • You can unsubscribe from receiving marketing emails from us by clicking the “Unsubscribe from this list” link at the bottom of any email. Once you do this, you will no longer receive any emails from us.
  • You can request a readable copy of the personal data we hold on you at any time. To do this, please contact

Please note, we are constantly reviewing how we process and protect data. Therefore, changes to our policy may occur at any time. We will endeavour to publicise any changes.

Volunteering Matters Action Earth grants now available!

Volunteering Matters Action Earth grants now available!

Any group of volunteers can now apply for Volunteering Matters Action Earth grants of between £50-250 to run environmental activities in Scotland’s green spaces. This could include creating or improving community gardens, wildflower meadows, ponds or woodlands.

This year we also have a limited number of enhanced grants of up to £500 for projects which can demonstrate a significant health impact through working with people who have defined health or social needs. More details on eligibility for these enhanced grants is at:

Local Nature Reserve (LNR) grants of up to £500 are also available for volunteer projects taking place on LNRs including activities such as wildlife recording or protecting and enhancing biodiversity.

For all our grants, we prioritise applications from volunteer groups who :

  • Work in areas where there is substantial social or economic deprivation
  • Improve and develop the health and wellbeing of their local community
  • Involve disabled people, vulnerable people or those at risk of exclusion
  • Encourage and involve people under 26 in practical outdoor conservation

Action Earth grant funding is provided by Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH).

Projects should take place between April and December 2018. Grants are allocated on a first-come basis so don’t delay – register today at

For more information contact Action Earth on:


T: 0131 510 8372