The RMT union plan further strikes on 8-10 July. Timetables will be available later. This could affect our next meeting in Millom on 8 July but on past evidence there should be at least some trains running. This meeting will now include Trudy Harrison MP.
The summer newsletter has being emailed to members who have opted for an electronic version or posted. If you would like to be the first to get the newsletter please email Nigel Gilligan (and save CRUG money).
General election: Trudy Harrison said at the Keswick hustings ‘We’ll have the biggest investment in rails since the Victorian times’ and Labour pledged to increase regulated fares by the Consumer Price Index rather than the usually higher Retail Prices Index.
There is a new timetable from 21 May but with virtually no changes to the coast line:
Mondays to Fridays the 1830 from Barrow is one minute later at stations from Whitehaven to Harrington and at Carlisle and on Saturdays the 1332 from Barrow arrives in Carlisle one minute later.
There are a few changes on the Furness line (beyond Barrow).
On Saturdays the 2135 Barrow-Lancaster is extended to Preston and the 2314 Lancaster-Barrow starts from Manchester Airport at 2200, both from 24 June-9 September.
There are a few changes on Sundays – the 0922 Barrow-Lancaster is extended to Manchester Airport from 25 June; there is an additional 1005 Barrow-Lancaster-Morecambe train until 10 September. In the opposite direction there is an additional 1017 Preston‑Barrow from 25 June and the 1117 Preston-Barrow runs at 1123 up to 18 June and then is replaced by the 1017; the 1604 Preston-Barrow which starts from Blackpool North becomes 1608 and starts at Preston.
Clearly these are slight improvements but no use for the coast line as we are still waiting for Sunday services between Barrow and Whitehaven.
Advance fares From the end of May Northern promised more advance tickets with online availability of them up to 15 minutes before a train’s departure but will increase some fares by up to 50p on the Lakes line and probably on the Settle and Carlisle but unlikely to be on the Coast or Furness lines. These have not yet been published.
The planned improved timetable for December 2017 has now been put back to at least May 2018 because of delays in electrification in south west England and subsequent transfer of trains. The previous date for the withdrawal of loco hauled trains and Pacer units of December 2019 still stands, when we should be served by a fleet of four car refurbished class 156 diesel multiple units.
West Coast Railways have an excursion from Carlisle, Penrith and Oxenholme to Betws-y-Coed on 20 September together with other departures from Carnforth.
The new Rail room at Millom Discovery Centre at the station has a free open day on 9 June 1030-1730 (usually open 1030-1530, Sundays to 1330 (usual admission £4 and concessions).
Car park charges at Whitehaven and Barrow will increase from £2 to £3 a day this month.
Scenic rail journeys is a new website from the Association of Community Rail Partnerships which features all the Cumbrian lines together with preserved railways in the area.
The new Ratty museum opens at Ravenglass at 1500 on 24 June.
The Whitehaven ticket machine now only takes cards, not cash.
Network Rail’s 2017-18 railway upgrade plan includes ‘ We are developing exciting plans for future projects, including working closely with the NuGen nuclear project, and other partners, to deliver a £400m investment on the Cumbrian coast.’
David Brown has been appointed as Managing Director of Arriva Rail North from September. David currently runs Transport for the North and before that Merseyrail.