Cumbrian Coast Line

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Not to be confused with Cambrian Line.
Cumbrian Coast Line
Class 37 meet-up.jpg
Class 37s working scheduled service trains on the Cumbrian Coast Line 2015.
Type Heavy rail
System National Rail
Status Operational
Locale Cumbria, North West England
Termini Barrow-in-Furness
Stations 26
Services 1
Opened 1844
Owner Network Rail
Operator(s) Northern Rail
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 12 in)
Cumbrian Coast Line
West Coast Main Line
to Glasgow and Edinburgh
WCML to London Euston
Solway Junction Railway
former line to Silloth
High Blaithwaite
Maryport & Carlisle Railway
Dearham Bridge
branch to Brigham
St Helen Halt
Siddick Junction
Cleator and Workington
Calva Jcn
Junction Railway
Workington North
to Great Broughton
Cockermouth and
Workington Railway
River Derwent
Steel Works
Cleator and Workington
Junction Railway
to Distington
Whitehaven, Cleator
and Egremont Railway
Whitehaven Harbour
Preston Street
"Corkickle Brake"
Whitehaven, Cleator
Woodend Halt
and Egremont Railway
St Bees
St Bees Golf Halt
Caulerton Halt
Cleator and Furness Railway
River Ehen
Sellafield reactor sidings
River Calder
LLWR Drigg
Saltcoats Crossing Halt
River Irt
River Mite
Ravenglass for Eskdale
Ravenglass and
River Esk
Eskdale Railway
Monks Moors Halt
Whitbeck Crossing Halt
Coniston Railway
Kirksanton Halt
Green Road
Underhill Halt
River Duddon
Dunnerholme Halt
Former line to mines
at Sandscale
Furness Line
Furness Abbey
Salthouse Halt
Barrow Docks
Power Station
Roa Island

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:

All the above constituents were absorbed into the London, Midland and Scottish Railway in 1923.

Towns and villages along the route[edit]


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,[5] 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.

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[edit]

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.

The Cumbrian Coast was given Community Rail status in 2008, and has an active Community Rail Partnership working hard to develop the route.

Route description[edit]

Network Rail's route NW 4033 runs for 114.3 mi (183.9 km) from Carnforth North Junction, near Carnforth, to Carlisle South Junction, near Carlisle, by way of Sellafield.

NW 4033 M-Ch km
Carnforth North Junction 0-00 0.00
Carnforth 0-12 0.25
Carnforth Station Junction 0-19 0.40
Silverdale 3-36 5.55
Arnside 6-10 9.85
Grange-over-Sands 9-12 11.85
Kents Bank 11-08 14.75
Cark and Cartmel 13-29 21.50
Ulverston 19-09 30.75
Dalton 23-46 37.95
Dalton Junction 24-19 39.00
Roose 26-74 43.35
Salthouse Junction 27-38 44.20
Barrow-in-Furness 28-66 46.40
Park South Junction 32-57 52.65
Askam 34-64 56.00
Kirkby-in-Furness 38-00 61.15
Foxfield 40-21 64.80
Green Road 42-15 67.90
Millom 44-68 72.20
Silecroft 47-73 77.10
Bootle 53-18 85.65
Ravenglass 57-60 92.95
Drigg 59-59 96.15
Seascale 61-73 99.65
Sellafield 63-57 102.55
Braystones 65-57 105.75
Nethertown 67-13 108.10
St Bees 70-03 112.70
Corkickle 73-59 118.65
Whitehaven 74-47 120.05
Bransty Junction 74-54 120.15
Parton 75-79 122.30
Harrington 79-08 127.30
Workington 81-27 130.90
Workington North
Flimby 85-00 136.80
Maryport 86-64 139.70
Aspatria 94-36 152.00
Wigton 102-63 165.40
Dalston 110-06 177.15
Currock Junction 113-37 182.60
Carlisle South Junction 114-19 183.85

2009 floods[edit]

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[edit]

The following lines all previously connected to the Cumbrian Coast Line, but have mostly now been closed


External links[edit]