For the purposes of this exercise lets assume we live in a perfect world where pathing is not an issue because as I understand it one of the main issues behind running local services on the northern end of the ECML is trying to fit them around all the EC, XC, TPE and freight services. So my question is thus, is there demand for better local services on the northern ECML? Say an hourly or two hourly service through the day between Newcastle and Chathill (as an extension of the existing hourly Newcastle and Morpeth service) run by something along the lines of a 380. That gives a massive boost to the stations north of Morpeth which at the moment have a couple of trains per day. Furthermore perhaps an hourly service from York to Newcastle calling all stops (so Thirsk, Northallerton, Darlington, Durham, Chester-le-Street and Newcastle) again run by something like a 380. Though actually looking at it perhaps it might be better to add more stops onto passing XC and TPE services rather than introducing a local service which covers much the same terrain? Either way it would give Thirsk and Chester-le-Street a much better service to Newcastle. Thoughts (other than 'how do you propose to path this little lot')? Are these ideas worth thinking further about or am I barking up the wrong tree and there is in fact no real demand for better rail travel options on these local routes?