Welcome to Railfuture

Banner used to promote the reopening of the Borders Railway, which was hung from the roof of Edinburgh Waverley station
David Steel, who as a young MP had fought strongly against the closure of the Waverley Route in 1969, arrives at Edinburgh Waverley station having just travelled on the reopened Borders Railway

132,000 passengers in first month

Railfuture celebrates one of the most significant railway reopenings in the UK - the Borders railway between Tweedbank and Edinburgh in Scotland, which reopened to passengers on Sunday 6th September 2015, 46 years after closure of the Waverley route in 1969. In its first month of operation the Borders railway carried over 125,000 passengers (including students, commuters, tourists and rail enthusiasts) on scheduled trains, plus over 6,000 on steam specials. Demand has been so high that Scotrail has had strengthen some trains with additional units. Councillor David Parker, Leader of Scottish Borders Council, said: “I was always confident that the Borders Railway would be a success, but even a passionate railway supporter such as myself has been taken aback by the huge numbers who have embraced the new service. The knock-on effect has already been seen, with local businesses such as cafes and restaurants reporting extra trade."

This shows what dedicated local campaigners can achieve with political support. The banner in Waverley station (above) announced the reopening; Lord Steel (left) was on the first train from Tweedbank to Edinburgh on 5th September. As a young MP, David Steel fought against the closure of the Waverley Route, was on the last train in 1969 and was involved in the famous incident at Newcastleton on that day when protestors against the closure blocked the last train there.

For the full story of the reopening, see Railfuture - Borders Railway Reopening.


Railfuture is the UK's leading independent organisation campaigning for better rail services for passengers and freight. Railfuture is a voluntary group representing rail users, with 20,000 affiliated and individual members. It is not affiliated to or funded by train companies, political parties or trade unions, and uses one-member one-vote democracy.

Railfuture campaigns for cheap and convenient rail services for everyone; better links for buses, bikes and pedestrians; policies to get more heavy lorries on to rail; new lines, stations and freight terminals – a better rail service and a bigger rail system for both passengers and freight. Our volunteer members in branches and around 300 local rail user groups campaign to get stations and lines reopened, and services and facilities improved, for the benefit of the community, economy and environment.

Over the past 50 years we have played a major part in getting over 370 new and reopened stations and over 500 miles of route to join the network.
Apply to join our campaign today - click Join Now using your credit/debit card via PayPal.

Working with Railfuture

As well as organising the annual national conference for rail users and user groups, Railfuture works at local and national level with train operators and other stakeholders to secure a better railway. Railfuture makes awards to campaigners from its Fighting Fund to bring about improvements. Awards have been given, for example, for publicity initiatives and feasibility studies.

Join Us - Become a Member

If you would like to join our campaign for a rail future please go to the Join Us page to apply for membership. It is just £18 (concessions available) which provides four all-colour magazines a year plus more. If you have any questions or comments you can contact us at info at railfuture.org.uk. Together we can work towards a Railfuture!

The independent campaign for a better passenger and freight rail network

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