Painting the town...purple

Purple crocuses will flower at Shawfair Station in the spring
Purple crocuses will flower at Shawfair Station in the spring

Two of Scotland’s newest railway stations have joined the fight to eradicate the polio virus, with 20,000 purple crocus bulbs being planted around the Borders Railway stations.

Esk Valley and Dalkeith Rotary Clubs, which have adopted the Midlothian stations, chose the distinctive hue to correspond with Rotary International’s ‘Purple for Polio’ campaign. Purple dye is used to mark the fingers of children who have been vaccinated against polio. In total, six million bulbs will be planted across the UK to raise awareness of the cause. The last case of polio being caught in the UK was in the 1980s, but it remains a serious problem in a handful of countries.

The group adopted the station under ScotRail’s ‘Adopt a Station’ scheme, which allows individuals and organisations to care for their local station by putting empty station buildings to good use, or by creating floral displays around the platforms.

Elaine Henderson, of Esk Valley Rotary, said: “Our adoption of Shawfair Station will enable us to draw attention to the activities of the Rotary movement at home and abroad, including the Purple for Polio campaign which seeks eradication of the disease in the three countries where it is still found.”

John Yellowlees, ScotRail community liaison manager, said: “It is fantastic to see the communities of the Borders Railway getting involved in their local stations so enthusiastically.

“We are delighted to be supporting the Rotary movement’s work locally and worldwide.”

The other stations on the Borders Railway adopted by local Rotary Clubs are Newcraighall and Tweedbank.