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End to Strikes - what next?

By richard.morris / Thu, 14/02/2019 - 11:25

News from Northern Rail's Regional Community Manager: 


I am writing to let you know that RMT has agreed to suspend its strike action and recommence talks about the future role of the conductor. This follows positive discussions between RMT and Northern - brokered by ACAS Chair, Sir Brendan Barber. This is really good news for customers and businesses across the North.


Strikes set to continue

By richard.morris / Sun, 06/01/2019 - 10:17

The RMT has announced that Northern Rail conductors will strike on every Saturday in January.  This is likely to mean no Saturday trains at all on the Settle-Carlisle Line and very few replacement buses.  

According to the Northern Rail web site, , Northern has called on RMT to suspend its damaging strike action and accept an independent ACAS inquiry.

Passenger numbers recover well

By richard.morris / Mon, 17/12/2018 - 19:09

The latest figures from the ORR (Office for Road and Rail) for station footfall, that's the number of people getting on and off trains at a particular station, show that the Settle-Carlisle Line passenger numbers have recovered very well after the line was closed at the northern end for over a year by the Eden Brows landslide.  The chart shows a time series from 2005-06 to 2017-18 for Armathwaite which as the nearest station to the landslide was particularly badly affected.  

Leeds trains now at Carlisle platform 5

By richard.morris / Tue, 11/12/2018 - 17:01

All change!  We've been swapped.  Leeds trains now depart from Platform 5 at Carlisle and Newcastle trains from Platform 6.  Why?  According to Virgin station staff it's because passengers from Newcastle had a habit of piling off the train and getting perilously close to the WCML tracks at Platform 4.  So, are Yorkshire folk better behaved than Geordies?  More likely that with the advent of a half-hourly Carlisle-Newcastle service (yes, half-hourly, what would we give for a regular two-hourly service?!), they'll regularly have two trains at the same platfor

Jellicoe Express commemorated

By richard.morris / Mon, 03/12/2018 - 18:00

The Jellicoe Express which ran between Euston and Thurso is being commemorated with a plaque.  Hawick on the old Waverley Line was a station where the Express called in one direction for coal and water and now is the only location that no longer has trains. The Express was the longest rail journey in Britain which ran during both world wars transporting mail and navy personnel.

Today the site of the station is occupied by the Treviotdale Leisure Centre.

Strikes to go ahead on 1st December

By richard.morris / Fri, 30/11/2018 - 19:03

Northern has written to the RMT inviting it to recommence ACAS talks.

Northern spokesperson said: “Northern has invited RMT to talks at ACAS in order to resolve its dispute. We are pleased that RMT has agreed to recommence talks at ACAS with no pre-conditions and we look forward to resolving this long-running dispute. Those talks can build on recent public statements made by Transport for the North and Department for Transport on the customer service and other benefits that will come about with a second person retained on Northern services in the future.

Giggleswick Railway Circle

By richard.morris / Tue, 27/11/2018 - 16:31

A reminder that the next meeting of the Giggleswick Railway Circle is this Wednesday Evening 28th November at 19.30.

Mr Kevin Finnerty is coming along to present the LMS-Patriot Project, the New National Memorial locomotive. I've not seen this presentation and wished to know more about the project, so I contacted the society. I'm sure this will be an interesting and informative illustrated talk about the trials and tribulations of building a new locomotive from scratch; and also some background history about the 'Patriot' Class.

The S&C Journal

By richard.morris / Thu, 15/11/2018 - 17:27

A message to FoSCL members in particular: in case you are wondering, the FoSCL magazine aka the S&C Journal will be delivered to your door w/b 19th November.

Not a member?  Then join us to receive your personal copy four times a year.  You can have a look at back copies at  If you decide you want to join, you can do it online at   

Settle Station Open Day cancelled

By richard.morris / Fri, 09/11/2018 - 11:48

Regrettably we have had  to cancel this year's Settle Station Open Day on 8th December.  There will be no trains at all, and the replacement buses tend to be slow and infrequent, so it is likely that hardly anyone would turn up and most of the helpers would be unable to come either.  We hope for better things next year.

Ribblehead clock stops

By richard.morris / Mon, 05/11/2018 - 21:51

At 10:36 this morning the clock stopped at Ribblehead Visitor Centre - but this time it wasn't an unexpected failure but a planned event! Work began today on damp proofing the entire West elevation to address chronic problems of water ingress.  The porous stone and exposed site have been a problem ever since the station was built.

Pre-Christmas Thursday Evening Trains from Carlisle

By richard.morris / Fri, 02/11/2018 - 12:51

Rather than the additional Thursday evening Christmas service from Carlisle to Kirkby Stephen return, Northern will be modifying the stopping pattern of the Carlisle-Leeds service departing 2018 hours.  There will be additional stops at Armathwaite (2032 hours) and Lazonby (2039 hours).  So, if you live local to these stations, why not do some late-night shopping, go to the cinema of for a meal in Carlisle.  Please take advantage of this and help us to prove there is a need for a permanent timetable change for stops at these stations.