First ScotRail

Public Utilities

First ScotRail run ninety five percent of Scotland’s passenger train services, connecting cities and remote communities alike.  It operates most commuter and long-distance services within the country as well as some cross-border services to England. Rural lines carry more passengers, mostly tourists, during the summer months, but provide a valuable link and social service during the winter months. The network covers some of the busiest and most beautiful rail routes, in the UK.

Project Work

The ScotRail branding programme was introduced to give the network its first-ever uniform look, sweeping away different colour schemes used in the east and west. However to avoid extra costs the project was programmed to be carried out during their routine cyclical repainting lifecycle. The project covered a vast geographical area including; Western Line from Inverness –Kyles of Lochalsh, Northern Line Dingwall –Thurso,North West Line Crainlarich-Mallaig West Highland Line Upper Tyndrum-Oban and the East Coast Line Dalgety Bay-Arbroath.

As part of the rolling maintenance programme, and subject to listed building consent, seventy five stations underwent general refurbishment and were repainted and rebranded in the new ScotRail colours.

The project also contained numerous stations of either historical or architectural interest. Bell Group’s contract manager worked with First ScotRail, Network rail, Historic Scotland and private landlords to preserve the distinctive character of these historic buildings and maintain their status as part of Scotland’s rich heritage.

One example is Glenfinnan station on the West Highland line. This station contains many of its original features, including the Swiss style station building, water tank, oil store and ornate signal box.  Part of the station building now houses the Glenfinnan Station Museum and a small gift shop. There is also a Dining Car and a Sleeping Car offering bunkhouse accommodation. In addition to this the Jacobite Steam train (of Harry Potter fame) stops four times a day to allow tourists a photo opportunity.Working in close proximity with the general public made stringent attention to health and safety precautions paramount. During times when high levels on tourists were onsite, site supervisors were instructed to cease work, make safe equipment and stand down from site. Following strict compliance with the scope of works wet paints areas were barricaded off, muli- lingual wet paint signs were displayed and a Bell Group operative was posted to secure the site. To ensure our operatives did not disturb residents staying in the bunkhouse shift patterns were modified to allow for a later start time. RAL colours were also changed to comply with listed building regulations.