I`m thinking of getting a North East Rover in June but the Settle Carlisle is still closed. Does that mean I can use an alternative route (on the NE Rover) via Manchester and the WCML when travelling from Sheffield to Carlisle ?
Having just used such a Rover myself (though not via the S&C nor the WCML), I haven't seen any relaxation made public - and there is a bustitution in place which theoretically (if not ideally) covers it.
There is a Rail Replacement Bus from Appleby and Carlisle, which covers it, and it is known disruption. VIA APPLEBY priced tickets are not valid on other routes. I would highly doubt that the Freedom of the North East rover will be.
I suspect this is going to fall into the realms of not officially permitted (as it is known about and there is a bus replacement service) but asking a guard politely before travel might yield a positive result.
The staff briefing on the matter said No, there was no relaxation applying to these tickets via Manchester.
There was a temporary relaxation which allowed travel for Rte Appleby tickets via Penrith, Preston and Burnley to Leeds and vv, for people who had purchased tickets prior to the disruption starting, but my understanding is that will not apply in this case.