Scotrail has ruled out a temporary platform at Townhead Depot while the exclusion zone remains at Ayr Station.

Mass calls to introduce the depot have been made in recent weeks, as travellers in Carrick have been made to put up with bus services to get them where they need to be.

A spokesperson from Scotrail said: “The way in which you would need to get by the exclusion zone to get to the depot means that there is still no access there.

“The trains would need to turn and getting them in and out of the depot means they need to get through there [the exclusion zone].

“There are two or three tracks that go south, and until we have access to that track then there’s not a lot we can do.

“We are continuing to work with the council to get things back, but we don’t have any definite timescales on that unfortunately.”

Meanwhile, South Scotland MSP Brian Whittle met with Scotrail bosses to raise the station hotel issue on top of wider calls for improved rail services in the south west. He said: “The disruption at Ayr Station, particularly on the weekend when the A77 was closed, has only served to highlight how dependent communities in the South West are on a few key routes. Sadly, those routes have suffered from a lack of investment for years.”

Despite the Townhead Depot becoming less likely to be a solution to the ongoing chaos, Mr Whittle is still fighting for some kind of temporary platform to be put in place. He added: “I’m told that, while the aim is still to get trains moving through the station again, Network Rail are looking at the possibility of setting up a temporary station south of the station hotel.”

Network Rail have indicated that a temporary station is still the answer according to MSP Emma Harper. She posted on Facebook: “Network Rail have also confirmed that they are progressing a contingency plan to install an additional station facility south of Ayr, in the event that they cannot reintroduce services to platform 4 of Ayr Station.

“This contingency plan is continuing in parallel to the other work stream outlined. A decision on implementation of the contingency plan will be made in light of progress on the other works highlighted.”

The exclusion zone still remains the barrier to rail services resuming south and ideas to implement temporary platforms are merely preparations for the exclusion zone situation changing.

Carrick residents remain without a rail service while this goes on. Maybole councillor, Brian Connolly said: “The passengers from North Carrick are almost at a stage of acceptance of the current circumstances.

“They have been seriously affected, particularly the early morning commuter by the current state of the service. It has had an impact on the people who require the service for work and for education. They are looking for the service to be reinstated as soon as possible.”