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July news

The RMT union have called off the strike on Saturday 21 July. However there may be disruption to services on Sunday 15 July.

Despite the poor strike timetable otherwise services are stabilising generally with few cancellations now on either the Cumbrian coast or Furness lines though it is still worth checking before setting off especially at weekends.

The timetable from 20 May means that there are Sunday services between Barrow and Carlisle and additional evening trains. This is not the full service promised but a considerable move towards it. Timetables are online with printed timetables  in very short supply. There are also four return Barrow-Manchester Airport and one Windermere-Manchester Piccadilly services. 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. Other Northern timetables are also online. The Whitehaven ticket office is now open on Sundays 0930-1630. Additional facilities such as ticket machines and some additional seating and shelters are being installed at all stations on the line except Nethertown and Braystones. The Seascale ticket machine will be outside the station in the car park on Gosforth Road side. Existing customer information screens on some stations will remain. No substantial alterations to the timetable are expected in December and therefore improvements such as the TransPennine Express Liverpool-Glasgow trains are expected to be introduced in May 2019.

Northern have  temporary timetables (with an explanation) to the end of July. There is a shuttle service on the Lakes line from Oxenholme to Windermere. A full service should operate on the coast, Furness, Tyne Valley and Settle and Carlisle lines. Mutual ticket acceptance is in place where trains are cancelled between Northern, TransPennine Express and Virgin until 29 July so that even with an advance ticket you can use other operators’ services if yours is not running (but not when it is!).

Engineering work

Trains from Preston via Bolton replaced by buses on Saturdays and Sundays until 4 November and for the week 25 August-2 September.

London Euston will be closed for the weekends of 18-19 August, 25-27 August and 1-2 September with no trains south of Milton Keynes.

Carlisle-Glasgow 26 August and 23 September line closed before 1700. TransPennine express will run services from Manchester Airport to Carlisle and/or strengthen the Edinburgh service.

TransPennine Express trains now run non stop between Preston and Manchester Piccadilly.

New ticket machines have been installed in Maryport and Whitehaven, operating in English, French, German, Spanish and Polish. They are an improvement on the old ones, but only seems to sell tickets on the day (so no advances) and no ranger or rover tickets.

Michael Portillo is speaking and signing his new book at the Carnegie in Workington on 22 January. Tickets are £17.50.

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