Cumbrian Coast Line
|Cumbrian Coast Line|
Class 37s working scheduled service trains on the Cumbrian Coast Line 2015.
|Locale||Cumbria, North West England|
|Rolling stock||Class 142 "Pacer" Class 153 "Super Sprinter"
Class 156 "Super Sprinter" British Rail Class 37
|Line length||85.50 mi (137.60 km)|
|No. of tracks||Mainly double-tracked, three sections of single track.|
|Track gauge||1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in)|
The Cumbrian Coast Line is a rail route in North West England, running from Carlisle to Barrow-in-Furness via Workington and Whitehaven. The line forms part of Network Rail route NW 4033, which continues (as the Furness Line) via Ulverston and Grange-over-Sands to Carnforth, where it connects with the West Coast Main Line.
The Cumbrian Coast Line is an amalgamation of a series of earlier routes:
- Carlisle to Maryport, Maryport and Carlisle Railway opened 1845
- Maryport to Whitehaven, Whitehaven Junction Railway (acquired by London and North Western Railway 1866)
- Whitehaven to Kirkby-in-Furness, Whitehaven and Furness Railway (acquired by Furness Railway 1865)
- Kirkby-in-Furness to Barrow-in-Furness, Furness Railway opened 1844
All the above constituents were absorbed into the London, Midland and Scottish Railway in 1923.
Towns and villages along the route
- St Bees
- Connection for the Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway (La'al Ratty)
- Green Road
Train services are operated by Northern Rail. Services stop at all stations (although many are request stops), with the exceptions of Netherstown and Braystones, which are served by four trains a day in each direction.
In the December 2013 - May 2014 timetable, the following trains operate on weekdays:
- Southbound - 19 trains per day
- Carlisle to Barrow-in-Furness - 9 trains per day, of which 2 continue to Lancaster and 1 to Preston
- Carlisle to Whitehaven - 4 trains per day, of which 1 begins at Newcastle
- Maryport to Preston - 1 train per day
- Whitehaven to Barrow-in-Furness - 1 train per day
- Sellafield to Lancaster - 1 train per day
- Millom to Barrow-in-Furness - 3 trains per day, 1 of which continues to Lancaster
- Northbound - 19 trains per day
- Barrow-in-Furness to Carlisle - 10 trains per day, of which 1 begins at Lancaster, 1 at Morecambe and 1 at Preston
- Barrow-in-Furness to Millom - 3 trains per day, of which 1 begins at Lancaster
- Barrow-in-Furness to Sellafield - 1 train per day
- Whitehaven to Carlisle - 4 trains per day
- Whitehaven to Workington - 1 train per day
There are no trains after 19:30 each evening between Millom and Whitehaven, as this section is only open for 12 hours each day due to the high operating costs associated with the large number of signal boxes & staffed level crossings that are present. Services are slightly altered on Saturdays and on Sundays there is no service between Barrow and Whitehaven, with four trains in each direction between Whitehaven and Carlisle.
A new Sunday service is due to be introduced over the section south of Whitehaven after the new Northern Rail franchise agreement comes into effect in April 2016 - the new operator (Arriva Rail North Ltd) will also be running an additional six weekday trains each way as part of the new 10-year agreement with the Department for Transport.
At Carlisle the lines connects to the: West Coast Mainline; the Settle-Carlisle Line; the Tyne Valley Line; the Glasgow South Western Line; and the Caledonian Sleeper service. At Barrow, there are connections to the Furness Line.
Passenger rolling stock
Due to restricted clearances on the section of line between Maryport and Carlisle (several overbridges were built to narrower than normal dimensions by the M&CR), Class 150 and Class 158s plus many other Diesel multiple units are banned from the route. Services are normally therefore operated by Class 142, Class 153 or Class 156 units. In the past the Class 108 first generation DMUs formerly used on the line were custom-fitted with bars on the drop-light doors for this reason. Since 2006 Network Rail have eased clearance restrictions so as to allow Mark 2 and Mark 3 coaching stock to operate the full route, although under strict instructions that all drop-light windows must be ether stewarded or locked between Maryport and Carlisle to prevent passengers from putting their heads out of the windows. This has allowed many charter services to operate the full length of the Cumbrian Coast. Since the May 2015 timetable change, a number of scheduled services between Carlisle & Barrow have also been operated using Mark 2 coaches and Class 37 diesel locomotives hired in from Direct Rail Services to provide additional seating capacity - these have also been modified accordingly.
The Cumbrian Coast was given Community Rail status in 2008, and has an active Community Rail Partnership working hard to develop the route.
|Carnforth North Junction||0-00||0.00|
|Carnforth Station Junction||0-19||0.40|
|Cark and Cartmel||13-29||21.50|
|Park South Junction||32-57||52.65|
|Carlisle South Junction||114-19||183.85|
In the aftermath of the 2009 floods, an extra hourly service between Maryport and Workington operated stopping at all stations in between, including the temporary Workington North. These services were withdrawn in December 2010.
Historical Connecting lines
The following lines all previously connected to the Cumbrian Coast Line, but have mostly now been closed
- Silloth branch, from Aspatria
- Brigham branch, near Maryport
- Cleator and Workington Junction Railway, near Workington
- Cockermouth and Workington Railway, near Workington
- Whitehaven, Cleator and Egremont Railway, near Corkickle
- Cleator and Furness Railway, near Sellafield
- Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway, at Ravenglass. This is a narrow gauge railway which still runs services for tourists, but there was formerly a standard gauge line from Ravenglass to Murthwaite for freight.
- Coniston Branch, near Foxfield
- Sandscale branch, at Barrow in Furness
- "Carlisle to Barrow-in-Furness" (PDF). Northern Rail. Retrieved 4 December 2013.
- Northern Franchise Improvements - DfT
- New Loco-hauled Services for the Cumbrian CoastRail Technology Magazine 19 May 2015; Retrieved 9 December 2015