York-Thirsk ( Evening rush hour)

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24 Mar 2015
I will be back working up in northern England in York again for a few weeks . And will be commuting in from Thirsk by train . I came in from Harrogate last time and it was terrible on Northern Rail only 2 old cars standing all the way .

My question is at evening rush hour will it be packed on this route too at standing room or will i be able to get a seat ?.

I am debating whether to drive in but would much prefer the train

Many Thanks
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RailUK Forums


Forum Staff
Staff Member
Global Moderator
16 Nov 2009
The most common services which stop there are TPE to/from Middlesbrough. In my experience those services are usually busy but everyone gets a seat north of York even in the peak. If you get a TPE service which is going to Newcastle I would not be surprised if it was very well loaded and possibly full and standing. Grand Central who also call would probably also be busy but everyone would get a seat.


Established Member
20 Apr 2010
I've done this route many times, as I used to live in Thirsk (well, Sowerby actually) and can count with my fingers the number of times I have had to stand. It seems the shoulder peak is by far the worst (i.e. the time immediately after the off peak tickets typically become valid) for the way out. At the actual peak when only an SDR is valid on TPE it's really not too bad at all. On the way back in the evening peak the trains are busy, but as ainsworth74 says you should still get a seat. Also that first train on a Sunday is terrible - avoid where possible, it accounts for roughly half of my standing on that section of the line.
As for Newcastle bound trains, yes they're packed but none of them stop at Thirsk in the evening peak anymore, at least they didn't last time I checked, the Middlesbrough ones empty out significantly at York. It's worth noting that unlike from Harrogate, the trains from Thirsk are fully reservable, so if you know which service you will be getting back you could always make a reservation, but I really can't see this being necessary.

Grand Central wise, this first service out can be rather busy, but unless there's a significant event on or something in York it's not too bad. You usually get a seat. The departure just before 7pm from York almost always gives you a seat.
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