SNP councillors attack Labour’s double standards over Airbles Station

4/5/07 WISHAW SPORTS CENTRE - COUNT - ALAN AND ANNETTE VALENTINE
4/5/07 WISHAW SPORTS CENTRE - COUNT - ALAN AND ANNETTE VALENTINE

SNP councillors Annette and Alan Valentine have attacked Labour’s ‘double standards’ over the Airbles Station consultation.

Earlier this month local Labour politicians launched a petition to protect the station from closure following its inclusion in Transport Scotland’s Rail 2014 consultation document as they don’t believe, despite Transport Minister Keith Brown’s assertion, it’s not under threat.

Motherwell West councillor Annette Valentine accused Labour of trying to win political points ahead of May’s North Lanarkshire Council election.

She said: “There is emphatically no secret agenda threat to Airbles Station.

“There is only an open and public consultation document on the renewal of the Transport Scotland franchise.

“The Transport Scotland website clearly states ‘this consultation is not the view of Transport Scotland or the Scottish Government’.

“The local government elections are in May this year and the Labour Party have no positive policies and are therefore reduced to scaremongering and trying to smear the Scottish Government.”

Motherwell South East and Ravenscraig councillor Alan Valentine added that Labour had complained about not being consulted about rail changes in the past and are now upset when they are.

He said: “The Labour Party have double standards on matters like this.

“In April 2008 when the Transport Minister Stewart Stevenson extended the First Scotrail franchise without consultation, the Labour Party were quick to complain about that decision.

“Now that there is a consultation they are still complaining. Everything the Scottish Government has done since 2007 has been to expand the railways in Scotland.

“They have completed the Airdrie to Bathgate line, progressed the Glasgow to Edinburgh Improvement Project, opened new stations such as Alloa and Laurencekirk and committed to a new Borders rail link.

“Keith Brown is quoted in the Motherwell Times of January 12 saying ‘there are no plans to close rail stations in Motherwell, or any other part of Scotland’ and I don’t understand why the Labour politicians have a problem accepting this.”