Harrogate line

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Harrogate line
Headingley Stn.jpg
144008 at Headingley, May 2006.
Overview
Type Heavy rail
System National Rail
Status Operational
Locale West Yorkshire
North Yorkshire
Harrogate
York
Leeds
Yorkshire and the Humber
Termini Leeds
York
Stations 14
Operation
Opened 1848
Owner Network Rail
Operator(s) Northern
Virgin Trains East Coast
Depot(s) Neville Hill
Rolling stock InterCity 125
Class 142 "Pacer"
Class 144 "Pacer"
Class 150 "Sprinter"
Class 153 "Super Sprinter"
Class 155 "Super Sprinter"
Class 158 (occasionally)
Technical
Line length 39-mile (62 km)
Track gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge
Harrogate Line
East Coast Main Line
towards London King's Cross
York
East Coast Main Line
towards Edinburgh Waverley
Poppleton
Hessay
Marston Moor
Wilstrop Siding
Hammerton
Cattal
Hopperton
Goldsborough
Pilmoor, Boroughbridge &
Knaresborough Railway
Knaresborough
Hay Park Lane
Knaresborough
Leeds-Northallerton
Railway
Starbeck
Harrogate
Hornbeam Park
Crimple Valley Viaduct
Harrogate to
Church Fenton Line
Pannal
Weeton
Otley and Ilkley
Joint Railway
Arthington
Bramhope Tunnel
Horsforth
Horsforth Woodside
(proposed)
Headingley
Burley Park
(opened 1988)
Holbeck Low / High Level
Leeds Central
Leeds City
Various lines
(see Leeds Station)

The Harrogate line is a passenger rail line through parts of North Yorkshire and the West Yorkshire area of northern England connecting Leeds to York by way of Harrogate and Knaresborough. Service on the line is operated by Northern, with a few additional workings by Virgin Trains East Coast starting and terminating at Harrogate. West Yorkshire Metro's bus and rail MetroCard ticket is available for journeys between Leeds and Harrogate.[1]

Route[edit]

History[edit]

The routes over which the Harrogate line trains now run were opened in 1848 by two of the railways which came to be part of the North Eastern Railway: the Leeds Northern Railway and the East and West Yorkshire Junction Railway. At the time of the 1923 Grouping the Harrogate area formed the junction for five routes: the main line was that of the Leeds-Northallerton railway; the other lines were to:

The Leeds station at the time was Leeds Central station, jointly owned by the NER and the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway

The line terminated in Harrogate at the Brunswick Station which was opened in 1848 but closed in 1862 when a new and more central station was opened.

Description[edit]

Schematic diagram of the Harrogate line including closed stations and branch lines

The 39-mile (62 km) line is composed of all or part of the following Network Rail routes:

  • LNE 9 from Leeds
  • LNE 6A from Leeds West Junction
LNE 6A M–Ch km
Leeds West Junction 0–00 0.00
Whitehall Junction 0–25 0.50
Headingley 2–67 4.55
Horsforth 5–37 8.80
Weeton 11–38 18.45
Pannal 14–59 23.70
Harrogate 18–00 28.95
  • LNE 6 from Harrogate
LNE 6 M–Ch km
Harrogate 0–00 0.00
Starbeck 2–11 3.45
Knaresborough 3–64 6.10
Cattal 10–18 16.45
Hammerton 11–57 18.85
Poppleton 17–34 28.05
Skelton Junction 18–68 30.35
  • LNE 2 from Skelton Junction to York

List of stations and major engineering works[edit]

Currently open stations are shown in bold font.

  • Leeds is a major transport hub where several long-distance and commuter lines meet. Trains scheduled to operate via Harrogate to York are shown with the destination of "Poppleton via Harrogate" because the Leeds-York journey via this route takes 40 minutes longer than on the route of the York & Selby lines via Garforth.
  • Royal Gardens, only a short distance from Burley Park, was closed in 1858.
  • Cardigan Road Goods station is closed and now the site of a builders yard.
  • Burley Park opened in 1988.
  • Headingley near Kirkstall Lane (B6157 road) is the closest station to the Kirkstall Lane end of Headingley Stadium.
  • Horsforth Woodside was located near Leeds Outer Ring Road, today's A6120, and closed in 1864. Opening of a new station here has been discussed on several occasions.[2][3]
  • Horsforth is physically the closest railway station to Leeds & Bradford Airport, though no direct public transport link currently exists between Horsforth station and the Airport terminal. The closest railway station with a bus link is Guiseley on the busier electrified Wharfedale Line.
South portal of the Bramhope Tunnel

Special services[edit]

In addition to the regular services on the Harrogate line, there is occasionally an increased service which runs prior to and after a major event on at Headingley Stadium such as an international cricket test match. The services run between Leeds and Horsforth stations to cater for a large usage at Headingley and Burley Park railway stations, and tickets are sold by Revenue Protection staff at the entrances to the platforms. This is to reduce the queue for tickets at Leeds station. Extra services have also been run on the Harrogate line for the Great Yorkshire Show.[8]

On weekdays a daily morning direct service to London King's Cross operates via Leeds. On 20 January 2011 the Government owned East Coast Franchise Operator (East Coast Trains) announced that following strong local representations an evening return service is to be reinstated, providing a direct train from London to Harrogate 7 days a week from May 2011.[9]

In July 2014, the Tour de France Grand Depart 2014 was held in Yorkshire with stage 1 from Leeds to Harrogate and thousands of spectators were expected. Extra trains were operated in this occasion. In addition to the local trains which were run at increased capacity,[10][11] two locomotive hauled services ran between Leeds and Harrogate during the day. Passengers wishing to travel between the depart at Leeds and first day finishing at Harrogate were required to wait separately outside Leeds station rather than proceed through the barriers, given the limited capacity through the station.

Trains[edit]

The route is served by a wide variety of Northern rolling stock, the most common seen on the line are the Class 142 "Pacer", Class 144 "Pacer", Class 150 "Sprinter", Class 153 "Super Sprinter" and Class 155 "Super Sprinter". Class 158s sometimes make appearances on the line as well. Virgin Trains East Coast services use the InterCity 125.

Future[edit]

In July 2011, Harrogate Chamber of Commerce proposed electrifying the line with 750 V DC third rail, using D Stock of the London Underground, to substantially increase capacity.[12] The D stock's replacement by S Stock on the District line in 2015 will make them available for other locations (they are not yet life-expired, having been built in 1980–83 and having been extensively refurbished in the 2000s). It is proposed that the stock will be converted to use the bottom-contact third rail system.[13] The scheme has yet to gain support from Metro, Northern Rail or National Rail, generally overhead electrification is favoured and is the only method used in the region. Furthermore, the D stock is older than current stock using the line and runs on a fourth rail system.

Several new stations have also been proposed, including at Flaxby and Knaresborough East. In November 2013 Rail Magazine reported on plans for the line to be electrified at 25 kV AC overhead power lines which could be in use by 2019. This would mean that there would be two electric lines to York from Leeds, the other being Leeds to York via Cross Gates which will soon be electrified.

On 5 March 2015, the Harrogate line, amongst others in the area including the Leeds–Bradford Interchange–Halifax line, the Selby–Hull line and the Northallerton–Middlesbrough line were named top priority for electrification; with an estimated cost for the Harrogate line of £93 million with a projected cost-benefit ratio of 1/3.60. No date has been set however.[14]

Money has been set aside for the doubling of the single line sections between Knaresborough and York. This will allow capacity improvements along the whole line. The projected completion date for this work is 2018.[15]

On 10 December 2017, on Sundays additional services have begun with a extra hourly service from Leeds to Knaresborough during the day. This means trains between Knaresborough/Harrogate and Leeds every 30 minutes during the daytime on Sundays.

The Ripon railway[edit]

The city was previously served by Ripon railway station on the Leeds–Northallerton line that ran between Leeds and Northallerton.[16] It was once part of the North Eastern Railway and then LNER.

The Ripon line was closed to passengers on 6 March 1967 and to freight on 5 September 1969 as part of the wider Beeching Axe, despite a vigorous campaign by local campaigners, including the city's MP.[16] Today much of the route of the line through the city is now a relief road and although the former station still stands, it is now surrounded by a new housing development. The issue remains a significant one in local politics and there are movements wanting to restore the line.[16] Reports suggest the reopening of a line between Ripon and Harrogate railway station would be economically viable, costing £40 million and could initially attract 1,200 passengers a day, rising to 2,700.[16][17][18] Campaigners call on MPs to restore Ripon railway link.[19]

In North Yorkshire County Council's 'A Strategic Transport Prospectus for North Yorkshire', they propose to build an entirely new railway between Leeds, Harrogate and Ripon which would have a junction with the East Coast Main Line north of Northallerton station. This would enable 125 mph (201 km/h) running, reduce journey times and provide an alternative route when the current Leeds to York to Northallerton section is closed.[20]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Zone 6 and 7 rail tickets - Metro". Retrieved 14 January 2016. 
  2. ^ "Back on track after Beeching". Yorkshire Evening Post. 12 January 2009. Retrieved 3 July 2017. 
  3. ^ "Call for more car parking at Leeds station". Yorkshire Evening Post. 21 September 2015. Retrieved 3 July 2017. 
  4. ^ "Rail update from Arthington Station Action Group". pool in wharfedale news. 30 January 2013. Retrieved 4 July 2017. 
  5. ^ Jack, Jim (23 September 2010). "Full steam ahead for new station". Wharfedale Observer. Retrieved 4 July 2017. 
  6. ^ Catford, Nick (17 May 2017). "Crimple". disused-stations.co.uk. Retrieved 1 September 2017. 
  7. ^ "Aerial View". 
  8. ^ "By Train". Great Yorkshire Show. 2011. Archived from the original on 11 November 2011. 
  9. ^ "Harrogate – London East Coast Services" (PDF). Harrogate Chamber of Trade & Commerce. 17 February 2015. Retrieved 10 July 2017. 
  10. ^ "Extra trains laid on for Tour de France Grand Depart in Yorkshire". BBC. 20 May 2014. Retrieved 10 July 2017. 
  11. ^ "Additional train services for Tour de France in Yorkshire". BBC. 2 July 2014. Retrieved 10 July 2017. 
  12. ^ "Harrogate Line News 1 – 1st Meeting supports bid" (PDF). Harrogate Chamber of Commerce. 12 August 2011. Archived from the original (PDF) on 1 October 2011. Retrieved 26 August 2011. 
  13. ^ "Frequently Asked Questions". Archived from the original on 18 January 2016. Retrieved 14 January 2016. 
  14. ^ "Harrogate reacts to rail electrification news". Harrogate Advertiser. Retrieved 14 January 2016. 
  15. ^ Windham, Dan (27 October 2015). "North Yorkshire take first step for Harrogate". Harrogate Advertiser. Retrieved 14 January 2016. 
  16. ^ a b c d "Reopening line makes economic sense, says study". Northern Echo. Retrieved 1 February 2009. 
  17. ^ "Backing for restoring rail link". BBC News Online. BBC. 11 May 2004. Retrieved 4 January 2010. 
  18. ^ "Reopening of 11-mile Harrogate-Ripon rail link takes a step nearer". Yorkshire Evening Post. 16 January 2006. Retrieved 15 January 2018. 
  19. ^ "Campaigners call on MPs to restore Ripon railway link". Yorkshire Post. Retrieved 2 March 2015. 
  20. ^ Broadbent, Steve (11 November 2015). "Council Proposes Leeds to Northallerton Railway". Rail Magazine. No. 787. p. 18. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 53°59′38″N 1°32′16″W / 53.99382°N 1.5377°W / 53.99382; -1.5377