Northern (train Operating Company)
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Northern Train Operating Company

Northern
ArrivaRailNorth.svg
Lancaster - Arriva 195101 Manchester service.JPG
A Northern Class 195 arriving at Lancaster
Overview
Franchise(s)Northern
1 April 2016 - 29 February 2020 [1]
Main region(s)North West
North East
Yorkshire and the Humber
Other region(s)East Midlands
Staffordshire
Fleet size386 units[nb 1]
Stations called at528
Stations operated476
Parent companyArriva UK Trains
Websitewww.northernrailway.co.uk

Northern (legal name Arriva Rail North Limited[2]) is a train operating company in Northern England which began operating the Northern franchise on 1 April 2016 and inherited units from the previous operator Northern Rail. A subsidiary of Arriva UK Trains, Northern is the largest train franchise in the United Kingdom in terms of the size of the network and the number of weekly services run. Its trains call at 528 stations, about a quarter of all stations in the country; of these stations 476 are operated by Northern.[3]

The previous Northern franchise greatly increased passenger numbers from 73 million to 97 million between 2004 and 2016 and as a result the new franchise was tendered on a growth basis, allowing for a £500 million investment in 101 new-built trains: the diesel Class 195 and electric Class 331.[4] Introduced into service in July 2019,[5] these were the first new-build trains for the Northern franchise since the introduction of the Class 333 in 2000, with further orders possible if the new units encourage passenger growth and improve passenger satisfaction.[6] The new rolling stock will enable all Pacer trains to be retired by June 2020.[7]

Since the franchise began in April 2016, it has been beset by worsening punctuality,[8][9] perceived poor customer service,[10] frequent industrial action by staff,[11] and delays in introducing new rolling stock.[12] The franchise was badly affected by the May 2018 timetable fallout and punctuality has struggled to recover. The franchise was scheduled to run until 2025 and had an option for an additional year, which was dependent on performance.

The future of the franchise was first reviewed by the Department for Transport (DfT) in July 2019 deeming frequent weekend cancellations due to insufficient staff to be "unacceptable".[13][14][15] It also voiced concerns about declining passenger numbers despite a 10% increase in timetabled services since the beginning of the franchise in 2016,[16] and an unplanned subsidy increase from £286 million to £404 million following the May 2018 timetable fallout.[17][18]

Conversely, Arriva contended that there had been "collective system inability",[19] citing Network Rail's inadequate timetabling to absorb delays and the DfT's unwillingness to proceed with improving infrastructure which were part of the Northern franchise bid prospectus in 2014,[20] such as two new "through" platforms at Manchester Piccadilly; these would have eased congestion through the Castlefield corridor[nb 2] and enabled the planned increase in services over the course of the franchise.[21]

On 29 January 2020, it was announced that Northern franchise would end early on 1 March 2020 - marking the first time a franchise has been removed from a train operating company due to poor performance since Connex South Eastern in 2003. From this date onwards, the franchise will be directly operated by the DfT under the brand name Northern Trains with an objective to "stabilise performance and restore reliability for passengers".[22][23]

History

In August 2014, the Department for Transport announced that Abellio, Arriva and Govia had been shortlisted to bid for the next Northern franchise.[24][25] The franchise was awarded to Arriva in December 2015.[26]

In May 2016, the Competition and Markets Authority launched an investigation into the transport department's decision to award the Northern network to Arriva.[27] Arriva operated the CrossCountry franchise and owned many bus companies in the Northern trains operating area in which 'a significant overlap occurs without competition from other service providers.'[28]

Penalty fares

As part of the new Franchise Agreement agreed in 2016, the Department for Transport required the introduction of a penalty fare scheme across 60% of the Northern network by the end of 2019 and across the entire network by the end of 2022.[29][irrelevant citation] The scheme aimed to reduce ticketless travel to less than 4.3% by March 2020 and 3.2% by March 2025.[29] In April 2018, a penalty fare scheme under the Railways (Penalty Fares) Regulations 2018 commenced to encourage passengers to purchase a ticket before boarding trains.

As ticket machines at Northern managed stations do not accept cash, a 'Promise to Pay' notice system (similar to the Permit to Travel ticketing system) is in operation. Customers who wish to purchase a ticket at an unmanned station of origin (i.e. either a closed, or no ticket office) with cash are required to collect a 'Promise to Pay' notice prior to boarding from a ticket machine. These notices can then be exchanged with the on-board conductor or with a member of railway staff at the destination station for a paid ticket.[30] Section 6 of the Railways (Penalty Fares) Regulations 2018 also covers a number of scenarios that prohibit penalty fares being issued such 'no facilities in operation for the sale of a travel ticket for that passenger's journey'.[31]

May 2018 timetable recast

Passenger journeys on Northern, 2010/11 to Q2 2019/20 (in millions, annual rolling average)[32][33]
Northern Rail performance from commencement of franchise in April 2016 to November 2018. Graph generated from published period performance data by Arriva Rail North.[34]

The franchise was widely criticised for implementing a new timetable in May 2018 which resulted in widespread delays and cancellations.[35][36]Network Rail and Northern announced an independent inquiry to learn lessons and identify route alterations in readiness for the next timetable change in December 2018.[37] In an attempt to counter operational problems, Northern implemented an emergency timetable on 4 June 2018[38] - it stemmed some delays and cancellations but was still problematic compared with performance before the timetable change.

Punctuality was particularly bad in the North West due to the delay in the Blackpool-Preston electrification scheme, and the number of trains per hour through Manchester increased, with more trains using the Ordsall Chord which became operational in December 2017. Network Rail only informed train operating companies in January 2018 that the electrification scheme would be delayed until November; Northern had planned for the scheme to be complete as scheduled by May 2018 (it had already been postponed from Autumn 2017) and had trained drivers to operate new routes with electric rolling stock. Consequently, an alternative timetable had to be drafted up, and many train drivers were not sufficiently trained to drive the existing diesel rolling stock; this resulted in widespread cancellations.[39] Furthermore, the additional services through the Manchester corridor resulted in increased congestion, and this had a knock-on effect.[40] Performance statistics published by the Office of Rail and Road in October 2018 showed that from April to June 2018, the franchise recorded the lowest PPM - measured by train service departing within 5 minutes of its scheduled time - of any quarter since punctuality records began on the Northern franchise in 2009.[41]

Performance later in 2018 continued to be poor, with many passengers protesting and a reduced service on Saturdays due to industrial action.[42][43] In October 2018, it was announced that Manchester Oxford Road station, the busiest station managed by Northern with over 8 million passengers, was the most delayed station in the United Kingdom in 2018 - this was attributed to the chaos following the May 2018 timetable.[44][45] Between 14 October and 10 November 2018, Northern recorded the worst monthly performance on record, with more trains late than on time. Less than 40% of services arrived on time (defined as services arriving within 59 seconds of the planned arrival time) and only 71.9% departed within 5 minutes of the scheduled departure time.[46]

By November 2018, Arriva were re-evaluating their future involvement in the franchise due to a combination of declining passenger numbers as a result of the chaotic May 2018 timetable change and increasing compensation claims as a result of falling punctuality.[47] Both have pushed the franchise into financial losses and face[clarification needed] a £282 million government subsidy shortfall which was due to be passed onto the franchise.[48] Since the franchise commenced in April 2016, and despite an increase of 1,500 more weekly services transferred to Northern's operational remit, Northern has achieved no growth in passenger numbers.[49] Between April and June 2018, the franchise suffered a 2.4% decline in passenger numbers compared with the previous year. Of the 22 train operating companies in the United Kingdom to record a fall in passengers, Northern were one of only three franchises to record a year-on-year drop in passenger numbers in 2017-18.[50]

Statistics published in December 2018 showed that between April 2017 and March 2018, many Northern managed stations recorded a drop in passengers - this period did not include the May 2018 timetable change or the increased Saturday strikes by conductors.[51][clarification needed] The Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, also reported that the failing railways in the region was resulting in increased congestion on the roads and Metrolink system, as passengers were abandoning the rail service as it had become less reliable since May 2018.[52] To counter continuing poor performance and encourage improved punctuality, the window for which passengers can claim compensation for delayed services was reduced from 30 minutes to 15 minutes from 17 December 2018.[53]

Minor changes were implemented in the December 2018 timetable change. However Northern said they did not expect a reliable service to be implemented until the May 2019 timetable change; it was expected that by this time there would be new rolling stock in service with the Class 195 and Class 331, newly electrified lines operational which would alleviate the shortage of diesel rolling stock in the Northern fleet and most notably operational flaws with the May 2018 timetable ironed out as part of better optimised timetable in May 2019.[54]

May 2019 and new trains

The first Class 195 units and Class 331 were introduced in July 2019

In May 2019, further Northern Connect services were introduced, namely the Chester to Leeds service[55] and the revised Manchester Airport to Barrow/Windermere service, to run via Wigan North Western. They also introduced an hourly service from Hull to Scarborough, doubling the service frequency on the Bridlington-Scarborough section of the line.

However, the May 2019 timetable does not include some of the improvements included in the original franchise agreement, such as a half-hourly service from Greenbank, Northwich, Knutsford and Altrincham to Stockport and Manchester; the additional Macclesfield and Poynton to Manchester and Blackpool service; or enhanced Sunday services.[56][57][58] The Transport Secretary, Chris Grayling, responded that "both Northern and Network Rail feel the additional paths cannot be accommodated without adversely affecting the reliability of other services on the network".[59]

In June 2019, the operator of last resort (managed by the Department for Transport) conducted due diligence into the franchise believing the both operational and financial performance to be "unsustainable".[60] The Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, overtly demanded that the franchise be terminated as Northern have not delivered legally-binding franchise requirements as agreed in 2016 when the franchise commenced - citing disproportionate number of cancelled services, inability to deliver a full Sunday service due to a lack of drivers and failure to deliver new services.[61]

On 1 July 2019, the first nine units - seven Class 195 units and two Class 331 units - were introduced with a further 93 units to be introduced over the following 12 months. The initial roll-out commenced on three routes: Manchester Airport to Liverpool Lime Street and Barrow/Windermere and Leeds to Doncaster.[62]

Demise

The franchise made a £21 million profit in 2016-17 and an £11.7 million profit in 2017-18 - a figure which does not include the fallout from the May 2018 timetable chaos.[63] At the start of the franchise, it was agreed that there would be a taxpayer subsidy of £275m in its first year and £260 in its third year - although Northern had received slightly more due to promised infrastructure improvements which the government had failed to deliver such as platforms 15 and 16 at Manchester Piccadilly which would have created a new path for the franchise to Manchester Airport. This subsidy was intended to fall sharply in 2020 to £221 million and by the end of the franchise in 2025 it would only receive £39 million.[64]

The fall in subsidy over the franchise is likely to push Arriva into a loss; The Times reported in summer 2019 that the Department of Transport viewed the franchise as "unsustainable" and were readying an Operator of Last Resort (OoLR) in the event the franchise collapses.[65] The government and franchisee adopted a strategy of investing in new trains to attract new passengers to gradually reduce the subsidy over a long-term period - however the franchise has struggled to increase passenger numbers, a challenge exacerbated by the fallout from the chaotic May 2018 timetable change.

It was confirmed in October 2019 that the Department of Transport were formulating a stabilisation strategy for the franchise which could entail supervising its workings whilst letting Arriva operate the day-to-day services - an arrangement akin to special measures.[66]Grant Shapps, the Transport Secretary, was critical of regular Sunday cancellations given Arriva had committed to legally adhere to ensuring minimum service requirements as part of the franchise agreement.[]

Following this announcement Arriva Trains UK expressed its regret and had adopted the view that 'collective system inability' had rendered the 2015 franchise agreement invalid.[21] They referenced infrastructure upgrades which were reneged upon by the Department for Transport and unworkable timetabling by Network Rail - illustrated by consistent delays on the certain routes.[21]

In November 2019, it was reported Arriva were a target of a takeover but that the Northern franchise would not be included in such a deal.[67] In the same month, Rail magazine cautioned against an Operator of Last Resort (OLR), arguing that problems ran far deeper than just Northern and OLR would not be a panacea - citing Network Rail implementing a timetable with little resilience against delays, the Department of Transport (DfT) not releasing funding for infrastructure upgrades and interfering local mayors.[68]

In January 2020, Shapps spoke again to criticise Arriva's operation of the Northern franchise and suggested that the Government may step in to revoke Arriva's franchise agreement, calling the service "completely unacceptable".[69]

On 29 January 2020, it was announced that Arriva would be stripped of the franchise from 1 March 2020, with the franchise to operated by the government's operator of last resort.[70]

Responding to the early termination of the franchise, Arriva Trains UK expressed its regret at the lack of investment in infrastructure to support the increased number of services since 2016 and apologised for the service provided. They expressed sentiments that despite the challenges encountered over the four years, much of the existing rolling stock had been modernised and the addition of new rolling stock, notably in six-coach formations on the busiest Northern routes, provided a solid platform for the Northern franchise going forward.[71]

Services

Northern took over all the services operated by Northern Rail (also branded Northern) on 1 April 2016[72] and on the same date, services between Manchester Airport and Blackpool North, Manchester Airport and Barrow in Furness and Oxenholme to Windermere from First TransPennine Express.[73]

Northern took over responsibility for all the stations managed by Northern Rail, as well as Arnside, Barrow-in-Furness, Birchwood, Burneside, Carnforth, Grange-over-Sands, Kendal, Staveley, Ulverston, Warrington Central and Windermere from First TransPennine Express.[73] Northern will staff some currently unstaffed stations. The first stations to be staffed will be Baildon and Ben Rhydding,[74] both in West Yorkshire.

Northern has committed to introducing free Wi-Fi on trains, and new ticketing options including the ability for customers to print their own tickets.[75] Arriva will provide new services across the North of England.[76]

The Cleethorpes to Barton-on-Humber service was due to be transferred to East Midlands Railway in August 2019 but will now not transfer until December 2019 .[73][77][78] The transfer will include Barrow Haven, Barton upon Humber, Goxhill, Great Coates, Grimsby Docks, Habrough, Healing, New Clee, New Holland, Stallingborough, Thornton Abbey and Ulceby stations.

On 1 July 2016, the business was divided into four regions, each headed up by a regional director:[79]

  • Central - regional director based in Manchester
  • East - regional director based in Leeds
  • North East - regional director based in Newcastle upon Tyne
  • West - regional director based in Preston

Table of off-peak services

Below is a list of off-peak services, per the 30 June - 14 December 2019 timetables.[80] It has been slightly simplified due to some routes' irregular service pattern. Due to the extensive nature of the network, it has been split by geographic area. Some services are listed in more than one place. Northern Connect lines are marked with their colour next to their route.

North East

Northumberland
Route tph Calling at Stock
Newcastle to Morpeth 1 Manors and Cramlington
Trains from Morpeth to Newcastle extend to Carlisle, see below
156, 158
Newcastle to Chathill - Manors, Cramlington, Morpeth, Pegswood, Widdrington, Acklington and Alnmouth
2 trains per day
Tyne Valley, Durham Coast and Esk Valley Lines
Route tph Calling at Stock
Carlisle to Newcastle 1 Haltwhistle, Hexham, Prudhoe and MetroCentre
Trains from Carlisle to Newcastle extend to Morpeth, see above
156, 158
Wetheral, Brampton (1tp2h), Haltwhistle, Bardon Mill (1tp2h), Haydon Bridge, Hexham, Prudhoe and MetroCentre
Trains either serve Brampton, or Bardon Mill
Hexham to Nunthorpe Corbridge, Riding Mill, Stocksfield, Prudhoe, Wylam, Blaydon, MetroCentre, Dunston, Newcastle, Heworth, Sunderland, Seaham, Hartlepool, Seaton Carew, Billingham, Stockton, Thornaby, Middlesbrough, James Cook, Marton and Gypsy Lane
Some trains terminate at Middlesbrough, with Whitby services providing the hourly Middlesbrough-Nunthorpe service. Other trains extend to Battersby or Castleton Moor
Middlesbrough to Whitby - James Cook, Marton, Gypsy Lane, Nunthorpe, Great Ayton, Battersby, Kildale, Commondale, Castleton Moor, Danby, Lealholm, Glaisdale, Egton, Grosmont, Sleights and Ruswarp
6 trains per day (4 on Sundays)
Tees Valley Line
Route tph Calling at Stock
Saltburn to Darlington (and Bishop Auckland) 2 Marske, Longbeck, Redcar East, Redcar Central, South Bank (1tph), Middlesbrough, Thornaby, Eaglescliffe, Allens West and Dinsdale. 1tph extends to Bishop Auckland, calling at North Road, Heighington, Newton Aycliffe and Shildon 156, 158

Cumbria and North Lancashire

Manchester to Cumbria
Route tph Calling at Stock
Manchester Airport to Cumbria 1 Heald Green, East Didsbury (Sunday only), Burnage (Not Sunday), Manchester Piccadilly, Manchester Oxford Road, Wigan North Western (Some 2 hour gaps in Southbound direction), Preston
All trains continue north. 11 trains per day continue to Barrow-in-Furness, see below. 4 trains per day continue to Windermere (most trains skipping Lancaster northbound), see below.
195
Lancaster to Barrow-in-Furness Carnforth, Silverdale (irregular), Arnside, Grange-over-Sands, Kents Bank (irregular), Cark (irregular), Ulverston and Dalton (irregular), Roose (irregular)
11 trains per day continue to Manchester Airport, see above. 4 trains per day (none from Manchester Airport) continue to Carlisle, see below.
156, 195
Barrow-in-Furness to Carlisle Askam, Kirkby-in-Furness, Foxfield, Green Road, Millom, Silecroft, Bootle, Ravenglass, Drigg, Seascale, Sellafield, St Bees, Corkickle, Whitehaven, Parton, Harrington, Workington, Flimby, Maryport, Aspatria, Wigton and Dalston
4 trains per day continue to Lancaster. See above.
Oxenholme Lake District to Windermere Kendal, Burneside and Staveley
4 trains per day continue to Manchester Airport. See above.
'Little' North Western
Route tph Calling at Stock
Leeds to Carlisle 0.5 Shipley, Bingley, Keighley, Skipton, Gargrave (irregular), Hellifield, Long Preston (irregular), Settle, Horton in Ribblesdale, Ribblehead, Dent, Garsdale, Kirkby Stephen, Appleby, Langwathby, Lazonby & Kirkoswald and Armathwaite 153, 158
Leeds to Lancaster Shipley, Bingley, Keighley, Skipton, Gargrave, Hellifield, Long Preston, Giggleswick, Clapham, Bentham, Wennington and Carnforth
some trains continue to Bare Lane and Morecambe, providing additional service
158, 150
Lancaster to Morecambe 1 Bare Lane
Hourly service supplemented/modified by additional trains from Leeds.
156
Lancaster to Heysham Port - Bare Lane, Morecambe (trains reverse)
1 train per day
Tyne Valley Line
Route tph Calling at Stock
Carlisle to Newcastle 1 Haltwhistle, Hexham, Prudhoe and MetroCentre 156, 158
Wetheral, Brampton (1tp2h), Haltwhistle, Bardon Mill (1tp2h), Haydon Bridge, Hexham, Prudhoe and MetroCentre
trains either serve Brampton, or Bardon Mill

Preston area

Manchester to Preston
Route tph Calling at Stock
Manchester Airport to Cumbria 1 Heald Green, East Didsbury (Sunday only), Burnage (Not Sunday), Manchester Piccadilly, Manchester Oxford Road, Wigan North Western (Some 2 hour gaps in Southbound direction), Preston
All trains continue north. 11 trains per day continue to Barrow-in-Furness, see above. 4 trains per day continue to Windermere (most trains skipping Lancaster northbound), see above.
195
Manchester Airport to Blackpool North Heald Green, Manchester Piccadilly, Manchester Oxford Road, Deansgate, Salford Crescent, Bolton, Horwich Parkway, Chorley, Buckshaw Parkway, Preston, Kirkham and Wesham (Sunday only) and Poulton-le-Fylde 319, 331
Hazel Grove to Blackpool North Woodsmoor, Davenport, Stockport, Heaton Chapel, Levenshulme, Manchester Piccadilly, Manchester Oxford Road, Deansgate, Salford Crescent, Bolton, Lostock, Horwich Parkway, Chorley, Buckshaw Parkway, Leyland, Preston, Kirkham and Wesham, Poulton-le-Fylde and Layton
Manchester Victoria to Preston Salford Central, Salford Crescent, Bolton, Lostock, Horwich Parkway, Blackrod, Adlington, Chorley, Buckshaw Parkway and Leyland
East Lancashire line
Route tph Calling at Stock
Blackpool North to York 1 Poulton-le-Fylde, Preston, Blackburn, Accrington, Burnley Manchester Road, Hebden Bridge, Mytholmroyd (Sunday only), Sowerby Bridge (Sunday only), Halifax, Bradford Interchange, New Pudsey, Leeds and Church Fenton 158, 195
Preston to Colne Lostock Hall, Bamber Bridge, Pleasington, Cherry Tree, Mill Hill, Blackburn, Rishton, Church & Oswaldtwistle, Accrington, Huncoat, Hapton, Rose Grove, Burnley Barracks, Burnley Central, Brierfield and Nelson 156, 150
Liverpool and Ormskirk to Blackpool
Route tph Calling at Stock
Liverpool Lime Street to Blackpool North 1 Huyton, St Helens Central, Wigan North Western, Euxton Balshaw Lane, Leyland, Preston, Kirkham & Wesham, Poulton-le-Fylde 319, 331
Ormskirk to Preston Burscough Junction, Rufford and Croston 156, 150
Preston to Blackpool South Salwick (irregular), Kirkham & Wesham, Moss Side, Lytham, Ansdell & Fairhaven, St Annes-on-the-Sea, Squires Gate and Blackpool Pleasure Beach

Liverpool

Liverpool to Wigan and Blackpool
Route tph Calling at Stock
Liverpool Lime Street to Wigan North Western 2 Edge Hill, Wavertree Technology Park, Broad Green, Roby, Huyton, Prescot, Eccleston Park, Thatto Heath, St Helens Central, Garswood and Bryn 319, 331
Liverpool Lime Street to Blackpool North 1 Huyton, St Helens Central, Wigan North Western, Euxton Balshaw Lane, Leyland, Preston, Kirkham & Wesham & Poulton-le-Fylde
Liverpool to Warrington and Manchester
Route tph Calling at Stock
Liverpool Lime Street to Manchester Airport 1 Liverpool South Parkway, Warrington West, Warrington Central, Birchwood, Manchester Oxford Road, Manchester Piccadilly, Mauldeth Road (Not Sunday) & East Didsbury (Not Sunday) 195
Liverpool Lime Street to Manchester Oxford Road Mossley Hill, West Allerton, Liverpool South Parkway, Hough Green, Widnes, Warrington Central, Padgate, Birchwood, Glazebrook, Irlam, Flixton, Chassen Road (1tp2h), Urmston, Humphrey Park (1tp2h), Trafford Park (1tp2h) and Deansgate 150, 156
Edge Hill (Not Sunday), Mossley Hill, West Allerton, Liverpool South Parkway, Hunts Cross, Halewood, Hough Green, Widnes, Sankey for Penketh (Infrequent), Warrington West, Warrington Central, Birchwood, Irlam, Flixton (Sunday only), Urmston and Deansgate
Liverpool Lime Street to Warrington Bank Quay

Monday-Saturday
Edge Hill, Wavertree Technology Park, Broad Green, Roby, Huyton, Whiston, Rainhill, Lea Green, St Helens Junction and Earlestown 319, 323, 331
Liverpool Lime Street to Crewe Edge Hill (Not Sunday), Wavertree Technology Park, Broad Green, Roby, Huyton, Whiston, Rainhill, Lea Green, St Helens Junction, Earlestown, Newton-le-Willows, Patricroft, Eccles, Deansgate, Manchester Oxford Road, Manchester Piccadilly, Mauldeth Road, Burnage, East Didsbury, Gatley, Heald Green, Manchester Airport, Styal, Wilmslow, Alderley Edge, Holmes Chapel and Sandbach

Some peak-time trains run to & from Manchester Victoria, evening and Sunday services terminate at Wilmslow

Manchester (via Oxford Road and Piccadilly)

CLC line
Route tph Calling at Stock
Liverpool Lime Street to Manchester Oxford Road 1 Mossley Hill, West Allerton, Liverpool South Parkway, Hough Green, Widnes, Warrington Central, Padgate, Birchwood, Glazebrook, Irlam, Flixton, Chassen Road (1tp2h), Urmston and Deansgate 150, 156
Edge Hill, Mossley Hill, West Allerton, Liverpool South Parkway, Hunts Cross, Halewood, Hough Green, Widnes, Sankey for Penketh, Warrington West, Warrington Central, Birchwood, Irlam, Urmston, Humphrey Park (1tp2h), Trafford Park (1tp2h) and Deansgate
Liverpool Lime Street to Manchester Airport Liverpool South Parkway, Warrington West, Warrington Central, Birchwood, Manchester Oxford Road, Manchester Piccadilly and Mauldeth Road
Some trains call additionally at East Didsbury; Sunday services call at East Didsbury instead of Mauldeth Road.
195
Airport Line
Route tph Calling at Stock
Cumbria to Manchester Airport 1 Preston, Leyland, Wigan North Western, Manchester Oxford Road, Manchester Piccadilly, Mauldeth Road (irregular), Burnage (southbound-only), East Didsbury (northbound-only), Gatley (southbound-only) and Heald Green
All trains continue north. 11 trains per day continue to Barrow-in-Furness, see above. 4 trains per day continue to Windermere (most trains skipping Lancaster northbound), see above.
195
Blackpool North to Manchester Airport Poulton-le-Fylde, Preston, Buckshaw Parkway, Chorley, Blackrod (irregular), Horwich Parkway, Bolton, Salford Crescent, Deansgate, Manchester Oxford Road, Manchester Piccadilly, Mauldeth Road (irregular), Burnage (northbound-only), East Didsbury (irregular), Gatley (northbound-only) and Heald Green 319, 331
Liverpool Lime Street to Crewe Edge Hill, Wavertree Technology Park, Broad Green, Roby, Huyton, Whiston, Rainhill, Lea Green, St Helens Junction, Earlestown, Newton-le-Willows, Patricroft, Eccles, Deansgate, Manchester Oxford Road, Manchester Piccadilly, Mauldeth Road, Burnage, East Didsbury, Gatley, Heald Green, Manchester Airport, Styal, Wilmslow, Alderley Edge, Holmes Chapel and Sandbach 319, 323, 331
West Coast Main Line
Route tph Calling at Stock
Manchester Piccadilly to Crewe 1 Levenshulme, Heaton Chapel, Stockport, Cheadle Hulme, Handforth, Wilmslow, Alderley Edge, Chelford, Goostrey, Holmes Chapel and Sandbach 319, 323, 331
Wigan North Western to Alderley Edge Hindley, Westhoughton, Bolton, Salford Crescent, Manchester Oxford Road, Manchester Piccadilly, Levenshulme, Heaton Chapel, Stockport, Cheadle Hulme, Handforth and Wilmslow 142, 150, 156
Manchester Piccadilly to Stoke-on-Trent Stockport, Cheadle Hulme, Bramhall, Poynton, Adlington, Prestbury, Macclesfield, Congleton and Kidsgrove 323
Mid-Cheshire Line
Route tph Calling at Stock
Manchester Piccadilly to Chester 1 Stockport, Navigation Road, Altrincham, Hale, Ashley, Mobberley, Knutsford, Plumley, Lostock Gralam, Northwich, Greenbank, Cuddington, Delamere and Mouldsworth 142, 150, 156
Buxton Line
Route tph Calling at Stock
Manchester Piccadilly to Buxton 1 Stockport, Davenport, Woodsmoor, Hazel Grove, Disley, New Mills Newtown, Whaley Bridge and Chapel-en-le-Frith 150, 156
Levenshulme, Heaton Chapel, Stockport, Davenport, Woodsmoor, Hazel Grove, Middlewood (1tp2h), Disley, New Mills Newtown, Furness Vale, Whaley Bridge, Chapel-en-le-Frith and Dove Holes
Manchester Piccadilly to Hazel Grove Levenshulme, Heaton Chapel, Stockport, Davenport and Woodsmoor 319, 323
Blackpool North to Hazel Grove Poulton-le-Fylde, Preston, Leyland, Buckshaw Parkway, Chorley, Horwich Parkway, Lostock (northbound only), Bolton, Salford Crescent, Deansgate, Manchester Oxford Road, Manchester Piccadilly, Levenshulme, Heaton Chapel, Stockport, Davenport and Woodsmoor
Monday-Saturday only.
Glossop and Hope Valley Lines
Route tph Calling at Stock
Manchester Piccadilly to Hadfield 2 Ashburys, Guide Bridge, Flowery Field, Newton for Hyde, Godley, Hattersley, Broadbottom, Dinting and Glossop 323
Manchester Piccadilly to Rose Hill Marple Gorton, Fairfield (1tph), Guide Bridge, Hyde North (1tph), Hyde Central, Woodley and Romiley 142, 150, 156
Manchester Piccadilly to New Mills Central 1 Ashburys, Belle Vue (irregular), Ryder Brow, Reddish North, Brinnington, Bredbury, Romiley, Marple and Strines (1tp2h)
Manchester Piccadilly to Sheffield Reddish North, Brinnington, Bredbury, Romiley, Marple, New Mills Central, Chinley, Edale, Hope, Bamford, Hathersage, Grindleford and Dore & Totley

Manchester (via Victoria)

Manchester to Wigan and Preston
Route tph Calling at Stock
Manchester Victoria to Preston 1 Salford Central, Salford Crescent, Bolton, Lostock, Horwich Parkway, Blackrod, Adlington, Chorley, Buckshaw Parkway and Leyland 319,
Stalybridge to Wigan North Western Ashton-under-Lyne, Manchester Victoria, Salford Central, Salford Crescent, Kearsley, Farnworth, Moses Gate, Bolton, Westhoughton and Hindley 142, 150, 156
Stalybridge to Manchester Victoria Ashton-under-Lyne 142, 150, 156
Manchester Victoria to Kirkby Salford Central, Salford Crescent, Swinton, Moorside, Walkden, Atherton, Hag Fold, Daisy Hill, Hindley, Wigan Wallgate, Pemberton, Orrell, Upholland and Rainford
Manchester to Blackburn
Route tph Calling at Stock
Blackburn to Rochdale 1 Darwen, Entwistle, Bromley Cross, Hall I' Th' Wood, Bolton, Salford Crescent, Salford Central, Manchester Victoria, Moston, Mills Hill and Castleton 142, 150
Clitheroe to Rochdale Whalley, Langho, Ramsgreave & Wilpshire, Blackburn, Darwen, Entwistle, Bromley Cross, Hall I' Th' Wood, Bolton, Salford Crescent, Salford Central, Manchester Victoria, Moston, Mills Hill and Castleton 150, 153, 156
Southport to Blackburn Meols Cop, Bescar Lane (irregular), New Lane (irregular), Burscough Bridge, Hoscar (irregular), Parbold, Appley Bridge, Gathurst, Wigan Wallgate, Hindley, Daisy Hill, Atherton, Walkden, Swinton, Salford Crescent, Salford Central, Manchester Victoria, Rochdale, Smithy Bridge, Littleborough, Todmorden, Burnley Manchester Road, Rose Grove and Accrington 142, 150, 156
Manchester to Leeds
Route tph Calling at Stock
Southport to Leeds 1 Meols Cop, Burscough Bridge, Parbold, Appley Bridge, Gathurst, Wigan Wallgate, Daisy Hill, Atherton, Walkden, Salford Crescent, Salford Central, Manchester Victoria, Rochdale, Smithy Bridge, Littleborough, Walsden, Todmorden, Hebden Bridge, Mytholmroyd, Sowerby Bridge, Brighouse, Mirfield, Dewsbury, Morley and Cottingley 142, 150, 156
Chester to Leeds Helsby, Frodsham, Runcorn East, Warrington Bank Quay, Earlestown, Newton-le-Willows, Manchester Victoria, Rochdale, Hebden Bridge, Mytholmroyd, Sowerby Bridge, Halifax, Bradford Interchange, New Pudsey and Bramley 150, 153, 156, 158, 195
Leeds to Manchester Victoria Rochdale, Todmorden, Hebden Bridge, Halifax, Bradford Interchange, New Pudsey and Bramley 153, 158

West Yorkshire

Huddersfield Line
Route tph Calling at Stock
Leeds to Southport 1 Cottingley, Morley, Dewsbury, Mirfield, Brighouse, Sowerby Bridge, Mytholmroyd, Hebden Bridge, Todmorden, Walsden, Littleborough, Smithy Bridge, Rochdale, Manchester Victoria, Salford Central, Salford Crescent, Walkden, Atherton, Daisy Hill, Wigan Wallgate, Gathurst, Appley Bridge, Parbold, Burscough Bridge and Meols Cop 142, 150, 156
Castleford to Huddersfield Wakefield Kirkgate, Mirfield, Deighton 142
Caldervale Line
Route tph Calling at Stock
York to Blackpool North 1 Church Fenton, Cross Gates (irregular), Leeds, New Pudsey, Bradford Interchange, Halifax, Sowerby Bridge, Mytholmroyd, Hebden Bridge, Burnley Manchester Road, Accrington, Blackburn, Preston and Poulton-le-Fylde 158, 195
Leeds to Chester Bramley, New Pudsey, Bradford Interchange, Halifax, Sowerby Bridge, Mytholmroyd, Hebden Bridge, Rochdale, Manchester Victoria, Newton-le-Willows, Earlestown, Warrington Bank Quay, Runcorn East, Frodsham and Helsby 150, 153, 156, 158, 195
Leeds to Manchester Victoria Bramley, New Pudsey, Bradford Interchange, Halifax, Hebden Bridge, Todmorden and Rochdale 153, 158
Leeds to Huddersfield Bramley, New Pudsey, Bradford Interchange, Low Moor, Halifax and Brighouse 142, 144, 155
Leeds-Bradford Lines
Route tph Calling at Stock
Leeds to Bradford Forster Square 2 Kirkstall Forge, Apperley Bridge, Shipley and Frizinghall 333, 331
Wharfedale Line
Route tph Calling at Stock
Leeds to Ilkley 2 Guiseley, Menston, Burley-in-Wharfedale and Ben Rhydding 333, 331
Bradford Forster Square to Ilkley Frizinghall, Shipley, Baildon, Guiseley, Menston, Burley-in-Wharfdale and Ben Rhydding
Airedale Line
Route tph Calling at Stock
Leeds to Skipton 2 Kirkstall Forge (limited), Apperley Bridge (limited), Shipley, Saltaire, Bingley, Crossflatts, Keighley, Steeton & Silsden, Cononley 333, 321, 322, 331
Bradford Forster Square to Skipton Frizinghall, Shipley, Saltaire, Bingley, Crossflats, Keighley, Steeton & Silsden and Cononley
Leeds to Lancaster 0.5 Shipley, Bingley, Keighley, Skipton, Gargrave, Hellifield, Long Preston, Giggleswick, Clapham, Bentham, Wennington and Carnforth
some trains continue to Bare Lane and Morecambe, providing additional service
150, 153, 158
Leeds to Carlisle Shipley, Bingley, Keighley, Skipton, Gargrave (irregular), Hellifield, Long Preston (irregular), Settle, Horton in Ribblesdale, Ribblehead, Dent, Garsdale, Kirkby Stephen, Appleby, Langwathby, Lazonby & Kirkoswald and Armathwaite 153, 158
Harrogate Line
Route tph Calling at Stock
Leeds to Harrogate 1 Horsforth and Hornbeam Park 144, 153, 170
Leeds to Knaresborough Burley Park, Headingley, Horsforth, Weeton, Pannal, Hornbeam Park, Harrogate and Starbeck
Leeds to York Burley Park, Headingley, Horsforth, Weeton, Pannal, Hornbeam Park, Harrogate, Starbeck, Knaresborough, Cattal, Hammerton and Poppleton 142, 150, 153, 155, 158, 170
Pontefract Line
Route tph Calling at Stock
Leeds to Knottingley 1 Woodlesford, Castleford, Glasshoughton and Pontefract Monkhill. 142, 144
Wakefield Westgate, Wakefield Kirkgate, Streethouse, Featherstone, Pontefract Tanshelf and Pontefract Monkhill 142, 144, 150
Leeds to Goole - Woodlesford, Castleford, Glasshoughton, Whitley Bridge, Hensall, Snaith and Rawcliffe
2 trains per day Leeds-bound, 1 train per day Goole-bound, Monday to Saturday only.
144, 156
Wakefield Line
Route tph Calling at Stock
Leeds to Doncaster 1 Outwood, Wakefield Westgate, Sandal & Agbrigg, Fitzwilliam, South Elmsall, Adwick and Bentley 170, 321, 322, 331
Leeds to Sheffield Outwood, Wakefield Westgate, Sandal & Agbrigg, Fitzwilliam, Moorthorpe, Thurnscoe, Goldthorpe, Bolton-upon-Dearne, Swinton, Rotherham Central and Meadowhall 142, 144, 150, 153, 158, 170
Penistone Line
Route tph Calling at Stock
Huddersfield to Sheffield 1 Lockwood, Berry Brow, Honley, Brockholes, Stocksmoor, Shepley, Denby Dale, Penistone, Silkstone Common, Dodworth, Barnsley, Wombwell, Elsecar, Chapeltown and Meadowhall (on Sundays several services are extended to Lincoln) 144, 150, 158
Hallam Line
Route tph Calling at Stock
Leeds to Sheffield 1 Woodlesford, Castleford, Normanton, Wakefield Kirkgate, Darton, Barnsley, Wombwell, Elsecar, Chapeltown and Meadowhall 144, 142
Leeds to Nottingham Wakefield Kirkgate, Barnsley, Meadowhall, Sheffield, Dronfield, Chesterfield, Alfreton, Langley Mill and Ilkeston 158, 195
Leeds to Lincoln Wakefield Kirkgate, Barnsley, Meadowhall, Sheffield, Worksop, Retford, Gainsborough Lea Road and Saxilby 142, 144, 153, 158, 195
York and Selby Lines
Route tph Calling at Stock
Leeds to York 1 Cross Gates, Garforth, East Garforth, Micklefield, Church Fenton and Ulleskelf (irregular) 155, 158
Leeds to Selby Cross Gates, Garforth, East Garforth, Micklefield and South Milford 155

South Yorkshire and Humber

Hope Valley Line
Route tph Calling at Stock
Manchester Piccadilly to Sheffield 1 Reddish North, Brinnington, Bredbury, Romiley, Marple, New Mills Central, Chinley, Edale, Hope, Bamford, Hathersage, Grindleford and Dore & Totley 142, 150, 156
Sheffield via Barnsley
Route tph Calling at Stock
Sheffield to Huddersfield 1 Meadowhall, Chapeltown, Elsecar, Wombwell, Barnsley, Dodworth, Silkstone Common, Penistone, Denby Dale, Shepley, Stocksmoor, Brockholes, Honley, Berry Brow and Lockwood 144, 150, 158
Sheffield to Leeds Meadowhall, Chapeltown, Elsecar, Wombwell, Barnsley, Darton, Wakefield Kirkgate, Normanton, Castleford and Woodlesford 142, 144
Nottingham to Leeds Ilkeston, Langley Mill, Alfreton, Chesterfield, Dronfield, Sheffield, Meadowhall, Barnsley and Wakefield Kirkgate 158, 195
Lincoln to Leeds Saxilby, Gainsborough Lea Road, Retford, Worksop, Sheffield, Meadowhall, Barnsley and Wakefield Kirkgate 142, 144, 153, 158, 195
Sheffield - Gainsborough Central
Route tph Calling at Stock
Sheffield to Gainsborough Central 1 Darnall, Woodhouse, Kiveton Bridge, Kiveton Park, Shireoaks, Worksop and Retford
Three trains per week extend to Cleethorpes calling at Kirton Lindsey, Brigg, Barnetby, Habrough and Grimsby Town
142, 144 150 153
Doncaster - Scunthorpe and Leeds
Route tph Calling at Stock
Doncaster to Scunthorpe 1 Kirk Sandall, Hatfield & Stainforth, Thorne South, Crowle and Althorpe 142
Doncaster to Leeds Bentley, Adwick, South Elmsall, Fitzwilliam, Sandal & Agbrigg, Wakefield Westgate and Outwood 170, 321, 322, 331
Sheffield via Rotherham
Route tph Calling at Stock
Sheffield to Adwick 1 Meadowhall, Rotherham Central, Swinton, Mexborough, Conisbrough, Doncaster, Bentley 142, 144, 153
Sheffield to Hull Meadowhall, Rotherham Central, Swinton, Mexborough, Conisbrough, Doncaster, Kirk Sandall, Hatfield & Stainforth, Thorne North, Goole, Saltmarshe (irregular), Gilberdyke, Broomfleet (irregular), Brough, Ferriby and Hessle 144 158
Sheffield to Bridlington Meadowhall, Doncaster, Goole, Brough, Hull, Cottingham, Beverley, Arram (limited), Hutton Cranswick, Driffield and Nafferton 158, 170
Sheffield to Leeds Meadowhall, Rotherham Central, Swinton, Bolton-upon-Dearne, Goldthorpe, Thurnscoe, Moorthorpe, Fitzwilliam, Sandal & Agbrigg, Wakefield Westgate and Outwood 142, 144, 150, 153, 158, 170
Sheffield to York - Meadowhall, Rotherham Central, Swinton, Moorthorpe, Pontefract Baghill, Sherburn-in-Elmet, Church Fenton and Ulleskelf
3 trains per day in each direction
142, 144, 153
Hull to Scarborough and York
Route tph Calling at Stock
Hull to Scarborough 1 Cottingham, Beverley, Arram (limited), Hutton Cranswick (irregular), Driffield and Nafferton (irregular), Bridlington, Bempton, Hunmanby, Filey and Seamer 153, 155, 158, 170
Hull to York 0.5 Brough, Gilberdyke, Howden and Selby 155, 158
Brough, Gilberdyke, Howden, Selby, Sherburn-in-Elmet, Church Fenton and Ulleskelf (irregular)
Barton Line
Route tph Calling at Stock
Cleethorpes to Barton-on-Humber 0.5 New Clee, Grimsby Docks, Grimsby Town, Great Coates, Healing, Stallingborough, Habrough, Ulceby, Thornton Abbey, Goxhill, New Holland and Barrow Haven 153

Northern Connect

Northern Connect logo
The logo for future Northern Connect express services

By December 2019, Northern plans to operate a network of twelve Northern Connect inter-urban express services - a franchise requirement. Most of these will be operated by brand-new Class 195 Civity diesel multiple units and Class 331 Civity electric multiple units, whilst the Middlesbrough to Carlisle via Newcastle route will be operated by refurbished Class 158 units. Electrification of the line between Oxenholme and Windermere was cancelled by the Government in 2017,[81] so the Manchester Airport to Windermere route will be operated initially by Class 769 Flex trains instead, with Class 195 Civity trains taking over by the end of 2019.[81]

Places that will be served by Northern Connect routes include Bradford, Chester, Halifax, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Middlesbrough, Nottingham, Newcastle, Preston, Sheffield, Barnsley, Lincoln, Wakefield, Wigan and York.

Northern Connect planned future routes and future rolling stock

Northern Connect
Colour Route[82] Via Rolling Stock
Services introduced by end of 2019
Blackpool North to Manchester Airport Poulton-le-Fylde, Preston, Leyland, Buckshaw Parkway, Chorley, Horwich Parkway, Lostock (southbound), Bolton, Salford Crescent, Deansgate, Manchester Oxford Road, Manchester Piccadilly, Mauldeth Road (irregular), Burnage (northbound), Gatley (northbound) and Heald Green
Peak and late evening services call additionally at Blackrod and usually Adlington.
Class 331
Liverpool Lime Street to Manchester Airport Liverpool South Parkway, Warrington West, Warrington Central, Birchwood, Manchester Oxford Road, Manchester Piccadilly and Mauldeth Road
Sunday services serve East Didsbury instead of Mauldeth Road.
Class 195
Barrow-in-Furness/Windermere to Manchester Airport Lancaster, Preston, Wigan North Western, Manchester Oxford Road, Manchester Piccadilly, Burnage (southbound), East Didsbury (northbound), Gatley (southbound) and Heald Green. From July 2019.
Some services run as two services- Manchester-Preston and Lancaster-Windermere/Barrow
Leeds to Lincoln Wakefield Kirkgate, Barnsley, Meadowhall Interchange, Sheffield, Worksop, Retford, Gainsborough Lea Road and Saxilby
Blackpool North to York Poulton-le-Flyde, Preston, Blackburn, Accrington, Burnley Manchester Road, Hebden Bridge, Mytholmroyd, Sowerby Bridge, Halifax, Bradford Interchange, New Pudsey, Leeds, Cross Gates (irregular) and Church Fenton
Chester to Leeds Helsby, Frodsham, Runcorn East,Warrington Bank Quay, Earlestown, Newton-le-Willows, Manchester Victoria, Rochdale, Hebden Bridge, Mytholmroyd, Sowerby Bridge, Halifax, Bradford Interchange, New Pudsey and Bramley
Liverpool Lime Street to Leeds Manchester Victoria, Rochdale, Halifax and Bradford Interchange Class 195
Carlisle to Middlesbrough Hexham, MetroCentre and Newcastle Class 158
Sheffield to Hull Doncaster Class 158 and Class 195[83]
Originally planned as part of the 2016 franchise agreement but shelved
Manchester Airport to Bradford Interchange[nb 3] Manchester Piccadilly, Manchester Victoria, Rochdale and Halifax Class 195[83]
Bradford Interchange to Nottingham[nb 4] Leeds, Wakefield Westgate, Sheffield, Chesterfield and Ilkeston

Rolling stock

Northern inherited the rolling stock operated by Northern Rail, namely Class 142, 144, 150, 153, 155, 156 and 158 diesel multiple units and Class 319, 321, 322, 323 and 333 electric multiple units. To operate services transferred from the TransPennine Express franchise, four Class 185 units were sublet from that franchise to Northern, with this later reducing to two units. As of the May 2019 timetable change, these sublet units have since returned to TPE. To provide additional peak time capacity on the Calder Valley Line, one Class 180 unit is sublet from Grand Central to Northern per weekday.

Class 37/4 locomotives and Mark 2 carriages were hired from Direct Rail Services for Cumbrian Coast line services until December 2018.[73][87]

The first Class 142 train, 142005, was withdrawn from service on 12 August 2019,[88] with the remaining Class 142s due to be withdrawn in early 2020. As of January 2020, 55 units have been withdrawn from service.

Current fleet

Class Image Type Top speed Number Carriages Routes Built
mph km/h
Shunting locomotive
08[] Shunter 15 24 1 N/A Stock movements 1952-62
Diesel multiple units
142 Pacer Preston - Arriva 142037+156488 Colne service.JPG DMU 75 121 24 2 Local and commuter services across the North 1985-87
144 Pacer Huddersfield - Northern 144014 Sheffield service.JPG 13 Local and commuter services in Yorkshire 1986-87
10 3
Northern Rail 144-2 Diagram.png
Northern Rail 144 3car Diagram.png
150/1 & 150/2 Sprinter Northern 150275 at Buxton, April 2017.jpg 75 121 78 2 Local and commuter services across the North 1985-87
153 Super Sprinter Northern Rail Class 153, 153352, platform 5, Lancaster railway station (geograph 4499685).jpg 20 1 Local and commuter services across the North
Also used to boost capacity on peak time services
1987-88
Class 153 Northern Rail.png
155 Super Sprinter Hull - Arriva 155343 arrived from Scarborough.JPG 75 121 7 2
  • Manchester Victoria-Leeds
  • Local and commuter services across Yorkshire
1987-88
Class 155 Arriva Northern Diagram.png
156 Super Sprinter 156489 in NR white.jpg 75 121 47 2 Local, commuter and regional services across the North 1987-89
Class 156 in Arriva Northern Livery.png
158/0 & 158/9 Express Sprinter 158752 at Manchester Victoria.jpg 90 140 45 2
  • Regional express and commuter services in West Yorkshire
  • Northern Connect services in the North East
  • Halifax-Hull
  • Chester-Leeds via Manchester Victoria
  • Wigan Wallgate-Leeds via Manchester Victoria
  • Leeds-Carlisle
  • Leeds-York via Garforth
  • Leeds-Morecambe
1989-92
8 3
Class 158 Arriva Northern 2 Car.png
170/4 Turbostar Sheffield - Arriva 170476 Bridlington service.JPG 100 161 16 3
  • Leeds-York via Harrogate
  • Sheffield-Hull/Bridlington
  • Hull-Scarborough
2003-05
Class 170 Arriva Northern Diagram 3 Car.png
180 Adelante James Herriott at Bradford (geograph 5037060).jpg 125 201 1 5 Calder Valley Line peak time services[nb 5]
(One unit is subleased from Grand Central)[89]
2000-01
195/0 & 195/1 Civity Lancaster - Arriva 195101 Manchester service.JPG 100 161 25 (16 in service) 2
  • Liverpool Lime Street-Wilmslow/Manchester Airport via Warrington Central
  • Manchester Airport-Barrow-in-Furness/Windermere via Wigan North Western
  • Oxenholme-Windermere
  • Chester-Leeds via Manchester Victoria
  • Barrow in Furness-Preston
  • Blackpool North-York
  • Leeds-Nottingham
  • Leeds-Lincoln via Sheffield
2018-19
33 (26 in service) 3
Northern Class 195-0.png
Northern Class 195-1.png
Electric multiple units
319/3 319375 Liverpool Lime Street.jpg EMU 100 161 19 4 Electrified commuter services in Greater Manchester, Merseyside and Lancashire 1990
Class 319 Northern 2016 Diagram.png
321/9 321109Doncaster.jpg 100 161 3 4 Electrified commuter services in West Yorkshire 1991
Class 321 & 322 Northern Diagram 2019.png
322 322485 Leeds.jpg 100 161 5 4 Electrified commuter services in West Yorkshire 1990
Class 321 & 322 Northern Diagram 2019.png
323 Stockport - Arriva 323236 Stoke-on-Trent service.JPG 90 140 17 3 Electrified commuter services in and around Greater Manchester and Merseyside 1992-93
323 Northern By Arriva.png
331/0 & 331/1 Civity 331001 approaching Crewe platform 1.jpg 100 161 31 (19 in service) 3
  • Leeds-Doncaster
  • Liverpool Lime Street-Blackpool North
  • Blackpool North-Manchester Airport via Chorley
  • Blackpool North-Hazel Grove via Chorley
  • Liverpool Lime Street-Wigan North Western
  • Liverpool Lime Street-Crewe via Manchester Piccadilly
  • Liverpool Lime Street-Warrington Bank Quay
  • Crewe-Manchester Piccadilly via Stockport
2018-19
12 4
Northern Class 331-0 w-pantograph.png
Northern Class 331-1 w-pantograph.png
333 Class 333. Set 034.jpg 100 161 16 4 Electrified commuter services in West Yorkshire 2000
Class 333 Arriva Northern Diagram with Pantograph.png

Past fleet

Former train types operated by Northern include:

Class Image Type Top speed Number Carriages Notes Built Withdrawn
mph km/h
Locomotive hauled stock
37 Crewe DRS - 37423.JPG Loco 80 130 2 - Replaced by Class 156 units. Returned to Direct Rail Services. 1960-65 2018
68 68018 and 68 number 005 Canterbury West to Leeds 1Z70 The Retro Canterbury Belle (27917071290).jpg 100 160 2[90] 2013-17
Mark 2 BR Mk.IIf TSO No.M6046 (7169853702).jpg Coach 6 1972-75
Carlisle - DRS Mk2 DBSO 9704 (37403).JPG DBSO 2 1979
Diesel multiple units
142 Pacer Preston - Arriva 142037+156488 Colne service.JPG DMU 75 121 55 2 Replaced by Class 150, Class 156, Class 158 and Class 170 units. 1985-87 2019-20
153 Super Sprinter Northern Rail Class 153, 153352, platform 5, Lancaster railway station (geograph 4499685).jpg 3 1 Replaced by Class 150, Class 156, Class 158 and Class 170 units.

(3 have been transferred to Abellio ScotRail)

1987-88
185 Desiro Class 185 at Manchester Piccadilly.jpg 100 161 4 3 Replaced by Class 195 and Class 331 units.
(Four subleased from TransPennine Express to operate Manchester to Blackpool/Cumbria services)
2005-06 2019
Electric multiple units
319/3 & 319/4 319375 Liverpool Lime Street.jpg EMU 100 161 20[nb 6] 4 Eight converted to Class 769/4, twelve units stored. 1987-90 2018-20

Driver Controlled Operation

The Department of Transport and Rail North have specified that the franchise must ensure that at least 50% of the aggregate Train Mileage of Passenger Services provided in each Reporting Period is operated as Driver Controlled Operation (DCO).[91]

DCO is defined as "operation of a train by a driver alone without the need for a conductor (or any other Franchise Employee)." The franchise further specifies that "Where ... a Passenger Service is operated as Driver Controlled Operation the Franchisee shall ... plan for an additional Franchise Employee (that is, in addition to the driver) to be present on such Passenger Service."[92]

The RMT Union are unhappy about this change, as roles currently undertaken by guards would instead be undertaken by drivers (such as releasing the doors once the train has stopped at a station). Although Northern have said they would be willing to guarantee that a second member of staff would be on board, the use of DCO could theoretically make it possible to run a train without a guard, and as a result, the union have called industrial action over the change.[91][93]

On 28 November 2018 Transport for the North announced that it did not support the removal of an additional franchise employee on Northern services, was willing to consider all options that would facilitate an agreement, and urged both Northern and the RMT Union to return to negotiations, suspending strike action.[94][95] On 29 November, RMT announced that it had offered to suspend industrial action under the condition that trains will never run without a guard on the train,[96] however, on 30 November, the union confirmed that it will continue industrial action as planned.[97]

On 6 February 2019, the RMT announced that following "a guarantee of a conductor on all trains, including the new fleet, for the duration of the current franchise" it had suspended further industrial action on Northern, bringing an end to consecutive strikes on Saturdays since 25 August 2018.[98]

Criticism

Northern have also had issues staffing Sunday trains, partly due to no agreement between the driver's union ASLEF and Northern for drivers in the former First North Western franchise area to work Sundays. This has led to both 'planned cancellations' (announced the day before) and short notice cancellations due to staff shortages for several months.[99][100][101] There have also been a significant number of cancellations on weekdays and Saturdays due to staffing issues, especially during school holidays.[102][103] This has led to local figures, including Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham, calling for Arriva to be stripped of the Northern franchise.[104]

Depots

Northern's fleet is maintained at Allerton, Botanic Gardens, Heaton, Newton Heath and Neville Hill depots.

In 2017, a new stabling depot opened at Blackburn King Street, with space for up to thirty diesel multiple units.[105]

A new depot opened in Wigan in December 2019, with space for 32 trains. The depot has been adapted from a freight yard at Springs Branch railway sidings in Ince-in-Makerfield and has cost £46 million to convert.[106]

Northern currently has depots for its train crew at Barrow-in-Furness, Blackburn, Blackpool North, Buxton, Carlisle, Darlington (drivers), Doncaster, Harrogate, Huddersfield, Hull, Liverpool Lime Street, Leeds, Manchester Piccadilly, Manchester Victoria, Middlesbrough (conductors), Newcastle, Sheffield, Skipton, Wigan Wallgate, Workington and York.

Notes

  1. ^ One unit is leased from Grand Central
  2. ^ The Castlefield Corridor is a heavily-used section of track in Manchester city centre from Deansgate to Manchester Piccadilly station. Approximately 15 trains per hour pass through this section of track which mostly consists of only two lines. Proposals to upgrade Manchester Oxford Road station to better manage flow of trains and two new platforms at Manchester Piccadilly were expected to be delivered when the Northern franchise was tendered in 2015 - however these proposals were shelved in 2018. As of 2020, no infrastructure upgrades to support growth have occurred and Network Rail declared the corridor 'congested' in September 2019.
  3. ^ Shelved due to insufficient capacity through Manchester for an additional Calder Valley service which requires a conflicting move across multiple lines. The Manchester corridor was declared 'congested' in July 2019 by Network Rail.[84][85] Service is dependent on capacity upgrades through Manchester such as new through platforms at Manchester Piccadilly.
  4. ^ Shelved due to delay in introducing new rolling stock.[86]
  5. ^ One morning peak time service from Hebden Bridge to Leeds, and one return trip in the evening peak, from Monday to Friday
  6. ^ Eight Class 319/4 units have been converted to Class 769 for Northern.

References

  1. ^ https://www.northern.olrholdings.co.uk/faqs/customers
  2. ^ "Arriva Rail North Limited".
  3. ^ "Northern Prospectus - Background and context" (PDF). Department for Transport (DfT). June 2014. p. 24. Retrieved 2019. The Northern franchise is currently the largest train franchise in Britain in terms of the size of the network and the number of services run.
  4. ^ "We are modernising". Arriva Rail North. Retrieved 2018.
  5. ^ "Northern launches new £500m fleet of 101 trains". BBC News. 26 June 2019. Retrieved 2019.
  6. ^ "Northern considering options for more new trains". RAIL. 14 July 2019. Retrieved 2019.
  7. ^ "Northern to retain 323s". Modern Railways. 15 August 2019. Retrieved 2019.
  8. ^ "Most overcrowded services revealed as passenger numbers plummet". Rail Technology Magazine. 24 July 2018. Retrieved 2018. Users of rail networks in several major cities across England have fallen. Passengers of services to Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester and Cardiff have suffered the largest decline, with many citing chaotic delays and cancellations as a number of reasons for no longer frequently using rail network.
  9. ^ Topham, Gwyn (6 December 2018). "Train performance this summer the worst for 20 years, figures show". The Guardian. Retrieved 2018. Northern's punctuality and reliability hit an all-time low for the July-September period, according to industry regulator the Office of Rail and Road
  10. ^ "Complaints about complaints: train passengers fed up with how they're treated". Which?. 14 November 2018. Retrieved 2018. Northern had the lowest satisfaction rate for politeness out of all train companies in the survey; in fact, it came last or in the bottom three of the 18 train companies in every aspect of the complaints process that passengers were asked about.
  11. ^ "Further disruption on Northern Rail as union members begin 38th day of strike action". ITV News. 1 December 2018. Retrieved 2018.
  12. ^ "EXCLUSIVE: New trains crisis: ORR demands co-operation to ensure progress of new fleets". Rail Magazine. 27 March 2019. Retrieved 2019.
  13. ^ "DfT examines future of Northern franchise". Rail Magazine. 16 October 2019. Retrieved 2019.
  14. ^ "Why Pacers Won't be leaving Greater Manchester in the new year after all - but Northern Rail might be soon". Manchester Evening News. 10 October 2019. Retrieved 2019. our members strongly felt that Northern have, through their poor performance, foregone any right to continue running the franchise, but clearly stating that a future management contract arrangement with Arriva Rail North should not be considered.
  15. ^ "Northern Rail could be renationalised, according to transport secretary Grant Shapps". Rail Technology. 16 October 2019. Retrieved 2019. Transport secretary Grant Shapps has said he has issued a "request for proposals" from the train operator and the Operator of Last Resort (OLR), which could see Northern stripped of private ownership and services brought under government control.
  16. ^ "Passenger Rail Performance". Office of Rail and Road. Retrieved 2020. Summary of the ORR statistics:
    • In 2016-17 Q1, the first quarter of Northern's operation, timetabled services were 218,350 and recorded station stops were 1,998,326.
    • In 2019-20 Q2, the last full quarter of Northern's operation, timetabled services were 241,949 and recorded station stops were 2,369,610
  17. ^ Paton, Graeme (27 January 2020). "Northern Rail subsidies soared by £120m in a year as it faces being renationalised". The Times. Retrieved 2020.
  18. ^ "Northern could lose rail franchise, says Grant Shapps". BBC News. 2 January 2020. Retrieved 2020.
  19. ^ "Northern rail crisis is a 'collective system inability', says Arriva UK Trains MD". Railway Gazette. 30 October 2019. Retrieved 2020.
  20. ^ "Transformation in Partnership" (PDF). DfT. June 2014. Retrieved 2020.
  21. ^ a b c @RailbusinessUK (30 October 2019). "Arriva UK Trains MD Chris Burchell talks to RailBusinessUK about ongoing problems at northernassist, where performance has been hit by the late delivery of new trains, industrial disputes and the inability of the infrastructure to handle the timetable" (Tweet). Retrieved 2019 – via Twitter.
  22. ^ "Rail firm Northern to be put into public ownership". BBC News. 29 January 2020. Retrieved 2020.
  23. ^ "Customer Information". Northern OLR Holdings. 30 January 2020. Retrieved 2020. Q: What are Northern Trains Limited's plans for the franchise? Our initial priority is to continue to stabilise performance across the region and restore reliability for customers. We will then explore opportunities to improve the experience for customers.
  24. ^ Shortlist for Northern and TransPennine operators revealed Department for Transport 19 August 2014
  25. ^ Transformation of rail in the north Northern 27 February 2015
  26. ^ DVV Media International Ltd. "Northern and TransPennine Express franchises awarded". Railway Gazette. Retrieved 2018.
  27. ^ Lea, Robert (21 May 2016). "Arriva faces northern exposure amid franchise victory enquiry". The Times (71916). p. 51.
  28. ^ Clinnick, Richard (17 May 2015). "Arriva faces possible investigation over competition concerns". Rail. Retrieved 2016.
  29. ^ a b "Northern Franchise Agreement" (PDF). Department for Transport. April 2016. p. 262. Retrieved 2019.
  30. ^ "Northern extends new penalty fares - but operator promises you CAN still buy tickets on the train". Manchester Evening News. 8 November 2018. Retrieved 2019.
  31. ^ "The Railways (Penalty Fares) Regulations 2018 - Regulation 6". HM Government. Retrieved 2019.
  32. ^ "Display Report | Office of Rail Regulation - National Rail Trends Portal". Dataportal.orr.gov.uk. Retrieved 2018.
  33. ^ "Display Report | Office of Rail Regulation - National Rail Trends Portal". Dataportal.orr.gov.uk. Retrieved 2018.
  34. ^ "Northern Rail - Performance". Arriva Rail North. Retrieved 2018.
  35. ^ Calder, Simon (21 May 2018). "Passenger fury at Northern Rail as train chaos hits Blackpool, Bolton and Manchester Airport on first day of new timetable". The Independent. Retrieved 2018.
  36. ^ "'Unacceptable #NorthernFail' - the travel chaos passengers faced on first working day of new Northern timetable". Manchester Evening News. 21 May 2018. Retrieved 2018.
  37. ^ "Northern rail to commission independent report into train disruption". BBC News. 25 May 2018.
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  39. ^ "Reality Check: Is a driver shortage messing up Northern trains?". BBC News. 6 June 2018. Retrieved 2018.
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External links

Preceded by
Northern Rail
Operator of Northern franchise
2016-2020
Succeeded by
Northern Trains

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.

Northern_(train_operating_company)
 



 



 
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