The Anonymous Widower

Northumberland Unveils £3.5m Rail Project To Bring Back Passenger Services

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on Rail Technology Magazine.

The first three paragraphs describe the project.

A county council has unveiled a new plan to reintroduce direct trains between Newcastle and south-east Northumberland, bringing back passenger services to a current freight line in a £3.5m investment.

Northumberland County Council said it is “determined” to reintroduce the direct passenger services as it could boost the local economy by up to £70m, with more than 800,000 annual return journeys by 2038.

The trains would travel directly along a 20-mile freight route between Newcastle Central and Ashington in south-east Northumberland, and the council wants to submit formal proposals by the end of the year and commence passenger services in 2022.

Reinstating a twenty mile railway for £3.5million seems extremely good value, so I would assume that the money will take the project another phase down the tracks to a full reopening. I have seen figures quoted of hundreds of millions for the full project.

This article in the Newcasstle Chronicle, gives other information.

  • The line could be open by 2022.
  • The line passes through ten of the least affluent council wards in the country.
  • SENRUG,, who are a local passenger group, describe the reopening, as one of the easiest in the country.

In 2017, I wrote Class 319 Flex Trains And Reopening Newcastle To Ashington.

This map from SENRUG, shows the lines North of Newcastle to Ashington and Blyth.

Since I wroye the article about the lines, various things have happened.

  • Class 319 Flex trains are now Class 769 trains and will enter service within three or four months.
  • Network Rail have indicated that Ashington, Blyth and Tyne is a project they would welcome being built by a third-party, as I wrote in Network Rail Is Open For Business.
  • Vivarail and others are working on the concept of pop-up stations.

I think we can file the Ashington, Blyth and Tyne reopening under Watch This Space.

We also shouldn’t ignore the fact, that if this reopening is successful, there are several other rail projects in the UK, where passenger services can be added to existing freight and mothballed lines.

Is the Government and Network Railway sending in the Geordies first?

February 6, 2019 - Posted by | Transport | ,

1 Comment »

  1. […] Newcastle And Ashington. See Northumberland Unveils £3.5m Rail Project To Bring Back Passenger Services. […]

    Pingback by Green Light For Revived West Midlands Passenger Service « The Anonymous Widower | June 21, 2020 | Reply


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