RAIL passengers have been left “double crossed” after the withdrawal of a number of services was confirmed.

A potential reduction in rail services stopping at Dunbar was revealed in February.

RAGES (Rail Action Group East of Scotland) and politicians were hopeful discussions with rail operator CrossCountry (XC) could yet see the services retained.

But it was confirmed at a meeting last week that a number of services had been axed.

A spokesperson for RAGES said: “From the content and behaviour at this meeting, it was blatantly obvious that XC had made the decision to withdraw their services from Dunbar and place them at Berwick.

“RAGES appealed to them not to do this, which would result in a great disservice to the passengers at Dunbar, especially given the town’s past and future expansion, and also that East Linton will be shortly opening, allowing for even greater footfall at Dunbar. Sadly, our appeals fell on deaf ears.

“CrossCountry have double crossed RAGES and the Dunbar area passengers by stating that they were open to negotiation, when clearly there was no will on their part to fulfil or take part in this.

“These cuts in XC services are totally unjustified, are going to have a devastating effect on Dunbar and the wider area of East Lothian, not just for the Edinburgh commute but also for extended travel to the south and south west, quite apart from the fact that we are all trying to do our utmost to protect our planet but it certainly appears that management within XC have a totally different agenda.

“With regard to the supposed ‘consultation’, RAGES insist this is null and void as it clearly was not distributed to an audience which would have had these withdrawals kicked into the long grass.”

READ MOREPotential loss of CrossCountry train services branded 'crazy'

According to RAGES, three weekday services from Plymouth to Edinburgh will be cut, with one service created.

Heading southbound, four services will be cut.

On a Saturday, three services heading northbound will be cut, with one service created between Penzance and Edinburgh.

Travelling in the opposite direction, three services will be cut.

Finally, on a Sunday, two services travelling northbound will stop, with an additional service starting in May.

Heading south, four services will be cut, with an additional service starting in May.

READ MOREEnjoy Easter treats with an East Lothian Courier digital subscription

Paul McLennan, East Lothian MSP, was also at the virtual meeting and shared the frustrations “that the goalposts appear to keep changing”.

He said: “The railway is an essential part of Dunbar’s transport links, and any changes must be made with the needs of the people of Dunbar in mind.

“At the meeting with CrossCountry, I shared my surprise at the changes.

“CrossCountry indicated that there was a consultation but, as far as I know, there was no engagement with elected officials or the public in Dunbar.

“This is not ideal, and I would hope that in any future decisions the public are kept very much in the loop.”

A CrossCountry spokesperson said: “We are disappointed to hear RAGES’ position.

“We remain committed to continuing our discussions with local stakeholders around the future of services at Dunbar.”