CGI overhead of three track footbridge in Leven

Bridge over the enigmatic “third track” at Levenmouth exposed

On the left, a spy satellite shot of the Levenmouth Railway, but what is that track on the right? CGI Network Rail

A mysterious “third track” has been spotted in the latest lighthearted twist to the eagerly anticipated new railway in Fife, in Scotland. Already being sensibly built to double track standard from the outset, a third track has been spotted by keen-eyed Levenmouth watchers. The leak comes from an otherwise innocuous report from Network Rail, unveiling design plans and projections for a new footbridge that will keep local communities connected when the rails return to their doorstep. It seems the railway corridor will be fifty percent wider than expected. What is it all about?

Network Rail’s recent planning application for a new footbridge over the re-established railway at Leven has taken an unexpected turn, adding a touch of intrigue to the much anticipated construction project. What was initially thought to be a perplexing feature referred to as the “third track” in CGI images has left locals asking: is this a freight provision, or is this the beginning of a huge boost from The Kingdom of Fife, and a restatement of the entire Fife Coastal Route? Well, no, it’s neither.

What lies beneath? A third track, that’s what

After extensive investigation which involved such cunning espionage as “looking at a map” – the town and modest industrial port of Leven, nestled in the heart of the Kingdom of Fife, as this area of Scotland is historically know, is abuzz with excitement as the 116 million pound (140 million euro) Scottish Government-funded railway project inches closer to completion. The railway, a long-anticipated development, marks a significant milestone in reuniting Levenmouth with the rail network after over half a century of isolation.

Ground level view of DRS class 66 on engineering train at Cameron Bridge on Levenmouth Railway Project in Scotland
At Cameron Bridge, just up the line, a spy train disguised as a DRS class 66 on engineering duties, sets out to ‘monitor’ the secretive “third track” that threatens to “run close” to the Levenmouth Rail Link project in Scotland

However, the talk of the town has been the curious “third track” depicted in the CGI images of the upcoming footbridge. The streets and bars of Leven, not normally subject to such subterfuge, have been rife with speculation about its purpose and significance. Rumours spread like an express train, fuelling theories of hidden underground passageways, secret transportation routes, and even reactivating Fife’s Cold War military heritage. Would the new railway in fact be a cover for some secret government activity? well, no. The only government activity has been the building of the Levenmouth Rail link – something that’s been anything but secret.

Bridge of Spies … possibly Scotch spies

As the buzz reached a fever pitch, whispers of secret investigations and insider sources added to the intrigue. Eager amateur sleuths embarked on their quest to unearth the truth behind the enigmatic “third track.” Was it a concealed passage for the eagerly anticipated Levenmouth Rail link, or was there more to this mystery than met the eye? Well, in a revelation that has been sensationally described as “stunning” and something that “could only befit a classic detective tale”, insiders close to the construction project have risked everything to smuggle out the secret behind the “third track.”

Contrary to the fantastical speculations, it turns out that the mysterious track is, actually, the heart and soul of the Fife Heritage Railway – a living museum that celebrates the golden era of railways from the bygone days of coal mining and milk trains, local commutes and agricultural trains in the Kingdom of Fife. The secret of this charming relic from yesteryear is finally out. now, with the coming of the big brother extension of Scotland’s Railway, the Fife Heritage Railway is set to be uncovered to a much wider audience, and it’s secretive operators will be secret no more. Until now, the only way to find out about the running days on the last Sunday of each month was to watch the “third track” for a wisp of steam and listen out for excited passengers. Other than that, there was no way to find out about the volunteer-run railway, unless you followed the road signs or mastered an online search for their website.

interweaving of history and progress

Now, the steam engines and vintage carriages, the railway promises to transport visitors on an enchanting voyage through history – or you can watch the action from the new, tri-rail footbridge.Network Rail, in collaboration with secretive Fife Council, has ingeniously integrated the hidden Fife Heritage Railway into the design of the new footbridge. This unexpected twist adds a delightful layer of charm to the already anticipated railway opening, making it not only a practical necessity but also a whimsical connection between the past and the present.

Poster from the Fife Heritage Railway claiming to "still be the longest railway in Leven"
…but not for much longer , and surely a title the heritage volunteers will be happy to relinquish

Construction of the footbridge, along with the supporting path and cycle routes, is set to commence in the late autumn. A diversion route will be in place during this period to ensure minimal disruption to the community. The completed structure is expected to be ready well in advance of the spring 2024 opening of the revitalised railway.
With the unveiling of the true identity of the “third track,” Leven’s new footbridge stands as a testament to the interweaving of history and progress. Fife has a no-longer hidden treasure beneath the modern facade of Leven’s innovative project.

Just don’t tell anyone…

Author: Simon Walton

Simon Walton is UK correspondent for and

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