Rail-ly nice tribute planned
It has been suggested that any potential new railway line from Penicuik to Edinburgh be named '˜The Montgomery Line', after former Midlothian Provost Adam Montgomery.
A local councillor for 30 years, as well as a former council leader, Cllr Montgomery had long made calls for a new railway line to connect Penicuik to Edinburgh, before his death in January at the age of 67.
Council officers are currently drafting a feasibility report into the potential for such a project, as called for by the Penicuik councillor last year.
Cllr Montgomery’s long-time friend and colleague Brian Weddell made the tribute proposal at Adam’s funeral.
Brian said: “I just thought off the cuff that I would include it in my eulogy as I do think it would be a very appropriate tribute to Adam and his family. Adam was not only passionate about that proposal, but also a councillor for Penicuik for 30 years.
“He was a fantastic friend, a great councillor, and a great role model for other councillors to look up to. Anything I can do to help the campaign I will. Adam and I go back a long way, regional councillors together in the early 90s.
“The Borders Railway and Edinburgh Trams were pipe dreams but through hard work and commitment those transport projects became a reality.”
Brian believes that a railway link to Penicuik is a fantastic idea and badly needed to improve local traffic issues.
He said: “There is a report kicking around at the council and it’s at the very early stages. Adam recognised that but he was like a dog with a bone. He had his teeth in it and wasn’t wanting to let it go.
“The officers report would outline how that goes and the council would have to make representations to the government and Scotrail.
“So, as I say, it’s very early stages. But it has to start somewhere.
“It’s a serious problem that needs to be looked at.
“With the congestion people feel between Penicuik and Edinburgh on a daily basis Adam felt there was a case to be made. There is clearly a demand for an extra form of public transport.
“We obviously need something that can take people in and out of Penicuik that is much quicker and cleaner than at the moment.”
Councillor Russell Imrie (Lab) backed the proposal to name any possible railway line to Penicuik after his former colleague and friend.
He said: “It would be a lovely thing to do. A nice way to remember’s Adam’s life.
“We need to look at what all the options are then make a council decision to take it forward and speak to the relevant bodies and convince them it’s a good idea.
“If that came about I would be delighted to have it as the Montgomery Line.”