NETWORK Rail is powering ahead with plans for a new feeder station at Tweedbank, it has emerged.

A planning bid has been submitted to Scottish Borders Council to enable the ongoing electrification of its rail network.

The plan is for the change of use to railway operational land with the installation of a new feeder station, ‘network disconnector’ compound and access road at Winston Road at Galafoot in Tweedbank.

A submission with the application says: “Network Rail is committed to improving the reliability and resilience of the railway and planning for future investment.

“To facilitate this, there is a requirement to reconfigure the 25kV traction power distribution system across central Scotland to cater for any future growth and potential introduction of electric train services.

“Within the overall programme there will be a combination of new connections and upgrading existing ones to increase the overall capacity and capability of the 25kV system.

“Traction Power would be a key component of any future electrification, enabling the operation of electric and battery-electric trains by providing additional electrical capacity and introducing new feeder stations to support any future electrification.

“A feeder station at Tweedbank would support future proposals to electrify the Borders Railway by installation of a grid supply point at Tweedbank with a two circuit 10MVA 25kV feeder station.

“This project will not be introducing any electrification. A new feeder station would sustain network performance on the Borders Railway – supporting the introduction of electric rolling stock in the future.”

The new feeder station at Tweedbank would be situated outside the existing Network Rail land boundary, on land being purchased from Scottish Borders Council.

It would remain separated from the running line by the existing boundary fence, which is situated at the top of an embankment.