Preston to Barrow; what's TPE, what's Northern

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CaptainHaddock

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I've been planning a few ideas for trips out on the Northern £10 Day Ranger but am having trouble working out who's running what services on the Preston-Barrow route.

I know from posts on the recent Windermere thread that certain services that were formerly run by TPE transferred to Northern earlier this year, but I can't find a definitive up to date timetable that tells me which service is run by which TOC.

If you go to Northern's page for Barrow station ( https://www.northernrailway.co.uk/stations/BIF ) and click on the timetables link you get 2 timetables.

"Carlisle to Barrow-in-Furness with connections to Lancaster and Preston", which doesn't list the TOC, implying that all services on the route are Northern.

Yet click on "Barrow-in-Furness to Lancaster / Preston and Manchester Airport" and you get a TPE branded timetable, which is not only out of date but lists some of the services on the Northern timetable as run by TPE!

To add to my confusion I was at Ulverston on Saturday waiting to board the late running loco-hauled 1515 when the 1541 came in first, a 185 in full TPE livery. I asked the guard if, bearing in mind the delays, he could let me on the service with a Northern Day Ranger and he said it was fine as it was a Northern service anyway!

So is there a definitive way of finding out who's running what on this route?
 
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Bletchleyite

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All services on the Barrow line are now Northern. If you mean you want to avoid overcrowded Class 185s (on hire from TPE to Northern), just look for the ones without 1st.
 

thenorthern

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Generally the ones that call as Silverdale, Kents Bank, Cark, Dalton and Roose are not run by Class 185 trains.
 

Bletchleyite

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Generally the ones that call as Silverdale, Kents Bank, Cark, Dalton and Roose are not run by Class 185 trains.

I do wonder if Northern will consider going clockface all-stations once they have properly integrated the ex-TPE service. The timetable on that route (which I will myself be using later on!) is a poorly-coordinated mess, and I think it would be better used if it was easier to remember. You don't lose a lot of time for the extra stops with a modern unit.

FWIW on Sundays the ex-TPEs (185s) do serve the local stations at certain times.
 

thenorthern

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I do wonder if Northern will consider going clockface all-stations once they have properly integrated the ex-TPE service. The timetable on that route (which I will myself be using later on!) is a poorly-coordinated mess, and I think it would be better used if it was easier to remember. You don't lose a lot of time for the extra stops with a modern unit.

FWIW on Sundays the ex-TPEs (185s) do serve the local stations at certain times.

Some of the evening and morning services that call at all stops are also run by Class 185s.

I think one of the difficulties used to be timetabling trains to fit in with the West Coast Main Line from Carnforth to Lancaster although that should be easier once the Class 195s arrive.
 

Lemmy99uk

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Some of the evening and morning services that call at all stops are also run by Class 185s.

I think one of the difficulties used to be timetabling trains to fit in with the West Coast Main Line from Carnforth to Lancaster although that should be easier once the Class 195s arrive.

I do wonder if Northern will consider going clockface all-stations once they have properly integrated the ex-TPE service. The timetable on that route (which I will myself be using later on!) is a poorly-coordinated mess, and I think it would be better used if it was easier to remember. You don't lose a lot of time for the extra stops with a modern unit.

FWIW on Sundays the ex-TPEs (185s) do serve the local stations at certain times.

The fly in the ointment is the Cumbrian Coast. There is considerable through traffic from Millom and stations south of there to Lancaster/Preston and so these connections need to be maintained also.

Trying to get a clock face timetable on the coast is a nightmare because of the single line sections, the freight paths and the conflicting commuter markets. Carlisle, Workington, Whitehaven, Sellafield, Millom and Barrow all have peak flows to and from and this is partially responsible for the apparent haphazard frequency of services.
 

Bertie the bus

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There’s a very strange service on this line on Saturdays. The 13:00 Manchester Airport - Glasgow Central is 6 car – Preston and a TPE service. The front 3 then continues as the 14:02 - Glasgow as a TPE service and the rear 3 forms the 14:07 Preston - Barrow-in-Furness which is a Northern service, but when I travelled on it was shown on the PIS as a TPE service.

All very confusing especially if you a using a Northern Day Ranger.
 

Bletchleyite

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Just looked at the timetables downloadable from the Northern site and the NRT and it appears all trains towards Barrow except one serve Silverdale/Arnside/Kents Bank/Cark - there are mostly only skip-stops towards Lancaster.

That *is* odd; sure that never used to be the case. Perhaps timings made it easier to do that in one direction with a perhaps long-term aim of hourly clockface all stations with selective extensions to Manchester/Preston and the Coast?
 

thenorthern

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Round the coast its only the loco hauled stock and Class 142, 144, 150, 153 and 156s that can run. Anything else including 158s and 185s is too high for the tunnels.
 

driver9000

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There’s a very strange service on this line on Saturdays. The 13:00 Manchester Airport - Glasgow Central is 6 car – Preston and a TPE service. The front 3 then continues as the 14:02 - Glasgow as a TPE service and the rear 3 forms the 14:07 Preston - Barrow-in-Furness which is a Northern service, but when I travelled on it was shown on the PIS as a TPE service.

All very confusing especially if you a using a Northern Day Ranger.

They attach at 11:47 at Preston heading for the Airport.

What makes it worse is the Glasgow portion is non stop to Carlisle once it leaves Preston so if you want Lancaster and you didn't manage to swap portions then you're off to the great border city!
 

bramling

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Why's that?

Had the displeasure of a pair of 153s earlier.

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

I've heard it said it was to do with the bridges on the Maryport & Carlisle Railway section, which were built to a particularly restrictive clearance.

In the past slam-door DMUs were required to be fitted with window bars, which I believe was due to this.

Not sure if Whitehaven Tunnel is restrictive too, although that was built much later on.
 

PHILIPE

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I think the restriction is only between Maryport and Carlisle. It may be a gauging problem through Aspatria Tunnel but somebody more versed may be able to explain further. Strange as it may seem, problems do exist with some classes at certain locations which might seem unexplainable on the surface.
 
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Bletchleyite

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I think the restriction is only between Maryport and Carlisle. It may be a gauging problem through Aspatria Tunnel but somebody more versed may be able to explain further. Strange as it may seem, problems do exist with some classes at certain locations which might seem unexplainable on the surface.

I guess it could be tight clearance on a straight section, meaning that the wider 20m units won't fit but the narrower 23m ones will - the usual being the opposite due to curve overthrow on longer units.

Still, I'm quite happy for the things to be banned from anywhere other than drab Manchester innersuburban commuter lines, TBH. The line is beautifully scenic (particularly enjoyed it at sunset today, even if I did have to put up with a pair of mucky ex-Yorkshire 153s with the collapsing seat bases, lino floors, cheapo paint job and no legroom; where have the ex-North West Express ones all gone?), so units where precisely no seats are correctly aligned to the windows are very unwelcome indeed :)
 
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Going to Barrow 11/10, £10 ticket, hopefully getting the 10.04 train, (if the BPS train is on time) which last spring was loco hauled mk 2 coaches by a class 37 - Direct Rail Services. Bars are fitted on the doors. Leg room comfort quiet!!!
https://be803fe5c416e39d38ae-aa2108...imetables/2016-08/Northern-6-0816-r10-web.pdf
Missed a train at Manchester Piccadilly using Northern £10 ticket because they were using TP stock. Confusing.
 
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