Bid for more train services at Northumberland's smaller stations

A bid is being made for more frequent train services at stations up and down Northumberland.

By Ben O'Connell
Thursday, 25th February 2021, 4:50 pm
Updated Thursday, 25th February 2021, 4:52 pm
Chathill is one of the smaller stations where its hoped more trains will call.
Chathill is one of the smaller stations where its hoped more trains will call.

At the same time as progress is being made on the reintroduction of passenger services between the south-east of the county and Newcastle, work has been taking place to seek improvements to East Coast Main Line services, including at Alnmouth and Chathill.

Conservative MPs Anne Marie Trevelyan, who represents Berwick-upon-Tweed, and Ian Levy (Blyth Valley) have joined with Northumberland County Council to sponsor a submission to the Government’s Restoring Your Railways fund, with the hope of seeing more frequent stopping services between Newcastle and Berwick.

The request would see 100mph electric trains stopping at least hourly at stations including Cramlington, Morpeth, Pegswood, Widdrington, Acklington, Chathill, Alnmouth and Berwick, giving many communities a hugely improved service.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The plans have been discussed at length with Department for Transport officials since March 2020 with more details being submitted by March 5 this year.

“Many of the stations in the Berwick-upon-Tweed constituency suffer from having far too few trains,” Mrs Trevelyan said. “Getting more services into these stations will be a great boost to our local economy and open up employment and educational opportunities.

“It will also allow people to access key services in towns up and down Northumberland, including the NHS services in Cramlington, which is a particular issue for many residents in the north of the county.”

Reuben Carr, who is aiming to win the vacant second Alnwick county council seat for Northumberland Conservatives in May 2021, added “It was great to see this year’s county council budget include funds to develop this project.

“Alnmouth, and in particular Acklington and Widdrington, are on the East Coast Mainline, but in reality few trains stop and local residents get little benefit.

“To have more regular stopping trains would be a huge benefit to our communities and I hope that residents get behind the plans and together we can push to make them a reality.

“To help the Government understand how keen we are to see this happen we have set up a petition page with our fellow Conservative councillors up and down the main line so that people can show their support for this idea. It can be accessed at: http://chng.it/CGZYC4QYQV

The dramatic events we are all experiencing are having a major impact on many of our local valued advertisers and consequently the advertising that we receive. We are now more reliant than ever on you helping us to provide you with news by buying a copy of our newspaper. If you can, please do pick up a copy when you are at the shops. Thank you for your support.