In the short term they can lap up the various 153s that will shortly be coming off-lease from other places (EMR, WMT, some of the TfW ones) and use those to help cover the unit shortfall. In the medium to long term they really should be considering more electric options than diesels, or stupid...
Sat at the Keighley & Worth Valley Railway doing nothing right now. The 144s have received an extension to their derogation until December, however I don't know if Northern actually intend to return them to service.
Considering how much of a bad state the unit is in whenever it's not needed for...
I always find the Hope Valley Line to be particularly captivating. I'm willing to put up with the one-and-a-half hour journey time on the all stations stopper in a rotten, decrepit 150 so I can go on it.
There are plenty still sat around. There are 4 at Blackburn, another bunch at Heaton and should those not suffice there are more units currently stored at Gascoigne Wood not doing particularly much at the moment.
I have seen 142 and 158 combinations on Northern as recently as February.
Mind you there are 150 and 170 combos roaming around, which is as good a parallel of unit quality as you can get on the Northern network. :lol: