Railway volunteers plant hundreds of trees in the Scottish Borders

Network Rail and Ground Control volunteers have taken part in community initiatives between Lamberton and Reston.

Earlier this month the team planted more than 550 trees and established a wildlife-friendly hedge and woodland area at Eyemouth garden – the home of Abundant Borders, who organised the project.

Volunteers completed strimming work and wood stained the pavilion at the organisation’s Duns garden while offering a natural Christmas tree disposal service to railway neighbours in the area. Bags of logs, generated from the works, were also distributed to the local community, to season at home for use in personal wood burners.

It took place while Network Rail and its contractor Ground Control continue to carry out tree and vegetation management work within the railway boundary on a six-mile stretch of the East Coast Main Line in the area.

This work, due to be completed by the end of March, is necessary to keep passengers safe and trains on time by reducing the risk of trees and debris falling on the railway.

If not managed, overgrown trees and vegetation can cause delays and train cancellations while also posing a risk to lineside neighbours and their properties.

Kirsty Armstrong, Scheme Project Manager for Network Rail said: “It was really nice to be able to help Abundant Borders at their community gardens and to give something back to the local community where we’ve been working for the last few months.

“We were also able to provide something a bit different by disposing of natural Christmas trees and issuing bags of logs to members of the community for use at home.”

Pete Saunders from Abundant Borders commented: “I was blown away by the volunteers who helped out at the Eyemouth and Duns Community Gardens.

“They were a friendly group of people who were very eager to help and offer assistance with a range of tasks out with what we had arranged.

“They were very hard-working and super-efficient, getting the jobs done in record time and to a very high standard.

“Their input has transformed the gardens and I'm delighted that they could get involved. I can't thank them enough for giving their time to make such a difference.”