Northern is a train operating company in Northern England which began operating the Northern franchise on 1 April 2016 and inherited units from the previous operator Northern Rail. A subsidiary of Arriva UK Trains, Northern is the second largest train franchise in the United Kingdom with its services calling at 528 stations - representing approximately a quarter of all stations in the country.
Central to franchise commitments will be a £500 million investment in 101 new-built units – the Class 195 and 331. These will be the first new-build trains for the Northern franchise since the introduction of the Class 333 in 2000 and the new rolling stock will enable all 102 Pacer trains currently in service with Northern to be retired by the end of 2019. Additionally, it is planned that a franchise sub-brand, known as Northern Connect, will provide inter-urban services between major cities and towns in Northern England, as well as serving a number of major commuting stations.
However since the franchise began in April 2016, it has been beset by falling punctuality, poor customer service, regular industrial action by staff, unpopular irregular calling patterns at commuter stations as part of timetable changes and delays in introducing new rolling stock. Despite passenger growth at the vast majority of train operating companies in the United Kingdom and the Northern franchise operating more services[nb 2], the number of passengers carried since the franchise commenced in 2016 has declined and has been attributed to worsening performance. The franchise will run to 2025 with an option for an additional year which is dependent on performance.
1 April 2016 – 31 March 2025
|Main Region(s)||North West|
Yorkshire and the Humber
|Other Region(s)||East Midlands|
|Fleet size||392 units[nb 1]|
|Stations called at||528|
|Parent company||Arriva UK Trains|
In August 2014, the Department for Transport announced that Abellio, Arriva and Govia had been shortlisted to bid for the next Northern franchise. The franchise was awarded to Arriva in December 2015.
In May 2016, the Competition and Markets Authority launched an investigation into the transport department's decision to award the Northern network to Arriva. Arriva operated the CrossCountry franchise and owned many bus companies in the Northern trains operating area in which 'a significant overlap occurs without competition from other service providers.'
As part of the new Franchise Agreement agreed in 2016, the Department of Transport required the introduction of a penalty fare scheme across 60% of the Northern network by the end of 2019 and across the entire network by the end of 2022. The scheme aimed to reduce ticketless travel to less than 4.3% by March 2020 and 3.2% by March 2025. In April 2018, a penalty fare scheme under the Railways (Penalty Fares) Regulations 2018 commenced to encourage passengers to purchase a ticket before boarding trains.
The franchise was widely criticised for implementing a new timetable in May 2018 which resulted in widespread delays and cancellations. Network Rail and Northern announced an independent inquiry to learn lessons and identify route alterations in readiness for the next timetable change in December 2018. In an attempt to counter operational problems, Northern implemented an emergency timetable on 4 June 2018 – it stemmed some delays and cancellations but was still problematic compared with performance before the timetable change.
Punctuality was particularly bad in the North West due to the delay in the Blackpool-Preston electrification scheme and the number of trains per hour through Manchester increased with more services utilising the Ordsall Chord which became operational in December 2017. Network Rail only informed train operating companies in January 2018 that the electrification scheme would be delayed until November – Northern had planned for the scheme to be complete as scheduled by May (having already been postponed from Autumn 2017) and had trained drivers to operate new routes with electric rolling stock. Consequently, an alternative timetable had to be drafted up and many train drivers were not sufficiently trained to drive the existing diesel rolling stock which resulted in widespread cancellations. Furthermore, the additional services through the Manchester corridor resulted in increased congestion and which had a knock-on effect. Performance statistics published by the Office of Rail and Road in October 2018 showed that from April to June 2018, the franchise recorded the lowest PPM – measured by train service departing within 5 minutes of its scheduled time – of any quarter since punctuality records began on the Northern franchise in 2009.
Performance towards the latter half of the 2018 continued to be poor with many passengers protesting and the network beset by a reduced service on Saturdays due to industrial action. In October 2018 it was announced that Manchester Oxford Road station, the busiest station managed by Northern with over 8 million passengers, was the most delayed station in the United Kingdom in 2018 – this was attributed to the chaos following the May 2018 timetable. Between 14 October and 10 November 2018, Northern recorded the worst monthly performance on record with more trains late than on time. Less than 40% of services arrived on time (defined as services arriving within 59 seconds of the planned arrival time) and only 71.9% departed within 5 minutes of the scheduled departure time.
By November 2018, Arriva were re-evaluating their future involvement in the franchise due to a combination of declining passenger numbers as a result of the chaotic May 2018 timetable change and increasing compensation claims as a result of falling punctuality. Both have pushed the franchise into a loss-making entity and face a £282 million government subsidy shortfall which was due to be passed onto the franchise. Since the franchise commenced in April 2016 and despite an increase of 1,500 more weekly services transferred to Northern's operational remit, Northern has achieved no growth in passenger numbers. Between April and June 2018, the franchise suffered a 2.4% decline in passenger numbers compared with the previous year. Of the twenty two train operating companies in the United Kingdom to record a fall in passengers, Northern were one of only three franchises to record an annual drop in passenger numbers in 2017–18.
Statistics published in December 2018 showed that between April 2017 and March 2018, many Northern managed stations recorded a drop in passengers – this period did not include the May 2018 timetable change or increased level of Saturday strikes by conductors. The Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, also reported that the failing railways in the region was resulting in increased congestion on the roads and Metrolink system as passengers were abandoning the rail service due to increased level of unreliability in the area since May 2018. To counter continuing poor performance and encourage improved punctuality, the window for which passengers can claim compensation for delayed services was reduced from 30 minutes to 15 minutes from 17 December 2018.
Minor changes were implemented in the December 2018 timetable change. However Northern stated they did not expect a reliable service to be implemented until the May 2019 timetable change; it is expected by this time there will be new rolling stock in service with the Class 195 and Class 331, newly electrified lines operational which alleviates the shortage of diesel rolling stock in the Northern fleet and most notably operational flaws with the May 2018 timetable ironed out as part of better optimised timetable in May 2019.
In May 2019, further Northern Connect services were introduced, namely the Chester to Leeds service, and the revised Manchester Airport to Barrow/Windermere service, to run via Wigan North Western. They also introduced an hourly service from Hull to Scarborough, doubling the service frequency on the Bridlington-Scarborough section of the line. However the May 2019 timetable does not include some of the improvements included in the original franchise agreement, such as a half-hourly service from Greenbank, Northwich, Knutsford & Altrincham to Stockport & Manchester, the additional Macclesfield, & Poynton to Manchester & Blackpool service or enhanced Sunday services. The Transport Secretary, Chris Grayling responded by stating "both Northern and Network Rail feel the additional paths cannot be accommodated without adversely affecting the reliability of other services on the network". An interim Chester to Altrincham shuttle was proposed to run on the Mid-Cheshire line until a full recast of Manchester services allowed the additional Greenbank to Manchester to be introduced.  However, Northern failed to get paths approved by Network Rail for such a service to be introduced. Arriva's franchise bid also included 4 trains per hour to Hazel Grove from December 2017, these have also not been implemented. However, the franchise requirements set out in the invitation to tender were 3 trains per hour to Hazel Grove, 2 trains per hour to New Mills Newton and 1 train per hour to Buxton, so as Northern currently deliver 3 trains per hour to Hazel Grove and 2 trains per hour to Buxton, they are still exceeding meeting the original requirement on the Hazel Grove & Buxton route. 
Northern took over all the services operated by Northern Rail (also branded Northern) on 1 April 2016 and on the same date, services between Manchester Airport and Blackpool North, Manchester Airport and Barrow in Furness and Oxenholme to Windermere from First TransPennine Express.
Northern took over responsibility for all the stations managed by Northern Rail, as well as Arnside, Barrow-in-Furness, Birchwood, Burneside, Carnforth, Grange-over-Sands, Kendal, Staveley, Ulverston, Warrington Central and Windermere from First TransPennine Express. Northern will staff some currently unstaffed stations. The first stations to be staffed will be Baildon and Ben Rhydding, both in West Yorkshire.
Northern has committed to introducing free Wi-Fi on trains, and new ticketing options including the ability for customers to print their own tickets. Arriva will provide new services across the North of England.
The Cleethorpes to Barton-on-Humber service will transfer to East Midlands Railway in August 2019. The transfer will include Barrow Haven, Barton upon Humber, Goxhill, Great Coates, Grimsby Docks, Habrough, Healing, New Clee, New Holland, Stallingborough, Thornton Abbey and Ulceby stations.
On 1 July 2016, the business was divided into four regions, each headed up by a regional director:
Below is a list of off-peak services, per the 20 May – 8 December 2018 timetables. It has been slightly simplified due to some routes' irregular service pattern. Several routes which Northern run only have limited or peak service and are omitted.
|Liverpool to Wigan and Blackpool|
|Liverpool Lime Street to Wigan North Western||2||Edge Hill, Wavertree Technology Park, Broad Green, Roby, Huyton, Prescot, Eccleston Park, Thatto Heath, St Helens Central, Garswood and Bryn|
|Liverpool Lime Street to Blackpool North||1||Huyton, St Helens Central, Wigan North Western, Euxton, Leyland, Preston, Kirkham & Wesham, Poulton-le-Fylde|
|Liverpool to Warrington and Manchester|
|Liverpool Lime Street to Manchester Airport||1||Liverpool South Parkway, Warrington Central, Birchwood, Manchester Oxford Road, Manchester Piccadilly and Mauldeth Road|
Some trains call additionally at East Didsbury; Sunday services call at East Didsbury instead of Mauldeth Road.
|Liverpool Lime Street to Manchester Oxford Road||1||Mossley Hill, West Allerton, Liverpool South Parkway, Hough Green, Widnes, Warrington Central, Padgate, Birchwood, Glazebrook, Irlam, Flixton, Chassen Road (1tp2h), Urmston and Deansgate|
|1||Edge Hill, Mossley Hill, West Allerton, Liverpool South Parkway, Hunts Cross, Halewood, Hough Green, Widnes, Sankey for Penketh, Warrington Central, Birchwood, Irlam, Urmston, Humphrey Park (1tp2h), Trafford Park (1tp2h) and Deansgate|
|Liverpool Lime Street to Warrington Bank Quay||1||Edge Hill, Wavertree Technology Park, Broad Green, Roby, Huyton, Whiston, Rainhill, Lea Green, St Helens Junction and Earlestown|
|Liverpool Lime Street to Crewe||1||Edge Hill, Wavertree Technology Park, Broad Green, Roby, Huyton, Whiston, Rainhill, Lea Green, St Helens Junction, Earlestown, Newton-le-Willows, Patricroft, Eccles, Deansgate, Manchester Oxford Road, Manchester Piccadilly, Mauldeth Road, Burnage, East Didsbury, Gatley, Heald Green, Manchester Airport, Styal, Wilmslow, Alderley Edge, Holmes Chapel and Sandbach|
|WCML Manchester Lines|
|Manchester Piccadilly to Crewe||1||Levenshulme, Heaton Chapel, Stockport, Cheadle Hulme, Handforth, Wilmslow, Alderley Edge, Chelford, Goostrey, Holmes Chapel and Sandbach|
|Manchester Piccadilly to Stoke-on-Trent||1||Stockport, Cheadle Hulme, Bramhall, Poynton, Adlington, Prestbury, Macclesfield, Congleton and Kidsgrove|
|Manchester Piccadilly to Chester||1||Stockport, Navigation Road, Altrincham, Hale, Ashley, Mobberley, Knutsford, Plumley, Lostock Gralam, Northwich, Greenbank, Cuddington, Delamere and Mouldsworth|
|Manchester Piccadilly to Buxton||1||Stockport, Davenport, Woodsmoor, Hazel Grove, Disley, New Mills Newtown, Whaley Bridge and Chapel-en-le-Frith|
|1||Levenshulme, Heaton Chapel, Stockport, Davenport, Woodsmoor, Hazel Grove, Middlewood (1tp2h), Disley, New Mills Newtown, Furness Vale, Whaley Bridge, Chapel-en-le-Frith and Dove Holes|
|Manchester Piccadilly to Hazel Grove||1||Levenshulme, Heaton Chapel, Stockport, Davenport and Woodsmoor|
|Glossop and Hope Valley Lines|
|Manchester Piccadilly to Hadfield||2||Ashburys, Guide Bridge, Flowery Field, Newton for Hyde, Godley, Hattersley, Broadbottom, Dinting and Glossop|
|Manchester Piccadilly to Rose Hill Marple||2||Gorton, Fairfield (1tph), Guide Bridge, Hyde North (1tph), Hyde Central, Woodley and Romiley|
|Manchester Piccadilly to New Mills Central||1||Ashburys, Belle Vue (irregular), Ryder Brow, Reddish North, Brinnington, Bredbury, Romiley, Marple and Strines (1tp2h)|
|Manchester Piccadilly to Sheffield||1||Reddish North, Brinnington, Bredbury, Romiley, Marple, New Mills Central, Chinley, Edale, Hope, Bamford, Hathersage, Grindleford and Dore & Totley|
|Manchester to Wigan and Preston|
|Manchester Airport to Blackpool North||1||Heald Green, Gatley, East Didsbury, Burnage,Mauldeth Road, Manchester Piccadilly, Manchester Oxford Road, Deansgate, Salford Crescent, Bolton, Horwich Parkway, Blackrod, Chorley, Buckshaw Parkway, Preston and Poulton-le-Fylde.|
Gatley and Burnage are served only by northbound (and late evening) trains. Mauldeth Road, East Didsbury and Blackrod are served irregularly.
|Hazel Grove to Blackpool North||1||Woodsmoor, Davenport, Stockport, Heaton Chapel, Levenshulme, Manchester Piccadilly, Manchester Oxford Road, Deansgate, Salford Crescent, Bolton, Lostock (northbound only), Horwich Parkway, Chorley, Buckshaw Parkway, Leyland, Preston and Poulton-le-Fylde |
|Manchester Victoria to Preston||1||Salford Central, Salford Crescent, Bolton, Lostock, Horwich Parkway, Blackrod, Adlington, Chorley, Buckshaw Parkway and Leyland|
|Manchester Airport to Barrow-in-Furness/Windermere||1||Heald Green, Gatley, East Didsbury, Burnage, Mauldeth Road, Manchester Piccadilly, Manchester Oxford Road, Wigan North Western, Leyland, Preston, Lancaster then onwards to the trains relevant destination, calling at all stations.|
Gatley and Burnage are served only by southbound trains. East Didsbury is served only by northbound trains. Mauldeth Road served irregularly.
|Alderley Edge to Wigan North Western||1||Wilmslow, Handforth, Cheadle Hulme, Stockport, Heaton Chapel, Levenshulme, Manchester Piccadilly, Manchester Oxford Road, Salford Crescent, Bolton, Westhoughton and Hindley.|
|Stalybridge to Wigan North Western||1||Ashton-under-Lyne, Manchester Victoria, Salford Central, Salford Crescent, Kearsley, Farnworth, Moses Gate, Bolton, Westhoughton and Hindley|
|Stalybridge to Manchester Victoria||1||Ashton-under-Lyne|
|Manchester Victoria to Kirkby||1||Salford Central, Salford Crescent, Swinton, Moorside, Walkden, Atherton, Hag Fold, Daisy Hill, Hindley, Wigan Wallgate, Pemberton, Orrell, Upholland and Rainford|
|Manchester to Blackburn|
|Rochdale to Blackburn (and Clitheroe)||2||Castleton, Mills Hill, Moston, Manchester Victoria, Salford Central, Salford Crescent, Bolton, Hall I' Th' Wood, Bromley Cross, Entwistle and Darwen|
1tph extends to/from Clitheroe, calling at Ramsgreave & Wilpshire, Langho and Whalley
|Blackburn to Southport||1||Accrington, Rose Grove, Burnley Manchester Road, Todmorden, Littleborough, Smithy Bridge, Rochdale, Manchester Victoria, Salford Central, Salford Crescent, Swinton, Walkden, Atherton, Daisy Hill, Hindley, Wigan Wallgate, Gathurst, Appley Bridge, Parbold, Hoscar (irregular), Burscough Bridge, New Lane (irregular), Bescar Lane (irregular) and Meols Cop|
|Leeds to Southport||1||Cottingley, Morley, Dewsbury, Mirfield, Brighouse, Sowerby Bridge, Mytholmroyd, Hebden Bridge, Todmorden, Walsden, Littleborough, Smithy Bridge, Rochdale, Manchester Victoria, Salford Central, Salford Crescent, Walkden, Atherton, Daisy Hill, Wigan Wallgate, Gathurst, Appley Bridge, Parbold, Burscough Bridge and Meols Cop|
|Wakefield Kirkgate to Huddersfield||1||Mirfield, Deighton|
|Leeds to Preston||1||New Pudsey, Bradford Interchange, Halifax, Sowerby Bridge, Mytholmroyd, Hebden Bridge, Burnley Manchester Road, Accrington and Blackburn|
|Leeds to Manchester Victoria||2||Bramley, New Pudsey, Bradford Interchange, Halifax, Hebden Bridge, Todmorden, Rochdale, Castleton (1tph), Mills Hill (1tph) and Moston (1tph)|
|Leeds to Huddersfield||1||Bramley, New Pudsey, Bradford Interchange, Low Moor, Halifax and Brighouse|
|Leeds to Bradford Forster Square||2||Kirkstall Forge, Apperley Bridge, Shipley and Frizinghall|
|Leeds to Ilkley||2||Guiseley, Menston, Burley-in-Wharfedale and Ben Rhydding|
|Bradford Forster Square to Ilkley||2||Frizinghall, Shipley, Baildon, Guiseley, Menston, Burley-in-Wharfdale and Ben Rhydding|
|Leeds to Skipton||2||Kirkstall Forge (limited), Apperley Bridge (limited), Shipley, Saltaire, Bingley, Crossflatts, Keighley, Steeton & Silsden, Cononley|
|Bradford Forster Square to Skipton||2||Frizinghall, Shipley, Saltaire, Bingley, Crossflats, Keighley, Steeton & Silsden and Cononley|
|'Little' North Western|
|Leeds to Lancaster||0.5||Shipley, Bingley, Keighley, Skipton, Gargrave, Hellifield, Long Preston, Giggleswick, Clapham, Bentham, Wennington and Carnforth|
some trains continue to Bare Lane and Morecambe, providing additional service
|Lancaster to Morecambe||1||Bare Lane. 1 train per day extends to/from Heysham Port.|
Hourly service supplemented/modified by additional trains from Leeds.
|Leeds to Carlisle||0.5||Shipley, Bingley, Keighley, Skipton, Gargrave (irregular), Hellifield, Long Preston (irregular), Settle, Horton in Ribblesdale, Ribblehead, Dent, Garsdale, Kirkby Stephen, Appleby, Langwathby, Lazonby & Kirkoswald and Armathwaite|
|Leeds to Knaresborough (and York)||3||Burley Park, Headingley, Horsforth, Weeton, Pannal, Hornbeam Park, Harrogate and Starbeck.|
1tph extends to/from York, calling at Cattal, Hammerton and Poppleton
|Leeds to Knottingley||1||Woodlesford, Castleford, Glasshoughton and Pontefract Monkhill. 3tpd are extended to and from Goole calling at Whitley Bridge, Hensall, Snaith and Rawcliffe.|
|1||Wakefield Westgate, Wakefield Kirkgate, Streethouse, Featherstone, Pontefract Tanshelf and Pontefract Monkhill|
|Leeds to Doncaster||1||Outwood, Wakefield Westgate, Sandal & Agbrigg, Fitzwilliam, South Elmsall, Adwick and Bentley|
|Leeds to Sheffield||1||Outwood, Wakefield Westgate, Sandal & Agbrigg, Fitzwilliam, Moorthorpe, Thurnscoe, Goldthorpe, Bolton-upon-Dearne, Swinton, Rotherham Central and Meadowhall|
|Huddersfield to Sheffield||1||Lockwood, Berry Brow, Honley, Brockholes, Stocksmoor, Shepley, Denby Dale, Penistone, Silkstone Common, Dodworth, Barnsley, Wombwell, Elsecar, Chapeltown and Meadowhall, several services extended to Lincoln Central (3 trains per day) via Worksop (on Sundays several services are extended to Lincoln)|
|Leeds to Sheffield||1||Woodlesford, Castleford, Normanton, Wakefield Kirkgate, Darton, Barnsley, Wombwell, Elsecar, Chapletown and Meadowhall.|
|Leeds to Nottingham||1||Wakefield Kirkgate, Barnsley, Meadowhall, Sheffield, Dronfield, Chesterfield, Alfreton, Langley Mill and Ilkeston.|
|Leeds to Lincoln Central||1||Wakefield Kirkgate, Barnsley, Meadowhall, Sheffield, Worksop, Retford, Gainsborough Lea Road and Saxilby|
|York and Selby Lines and Dearne Valley Line|
|Leeds to York||1||Cross Gates, Garforth, East Garforth, Micklefield, Church Fenton and Ulleskelf (irregular).|
|Leeds to Selby||1||Cross Gates, Garforth, East Garforth, Micklefield and South Milford|
|York to Hull||0.5||Ulleskelf (irregular), Church Fenton, Sherburn-in-Elmet, Selby, Howden, Gilberdyke and Brough|
|0.5||Selby, Howden, Gilberdyke and Brough|
|York to Sheffield via Pontefract Baghill||–||Ulleskelf, Church Fenton, Sherburn-in-Elmet, Pontefract Baghill, Moorthorpe, Swinton, Rotherham Central and Meadowhall.|
Limited service, only 4tpd.
|Sheffield to Humberside|
|Sheffield to Adwick||1||Meadowhall, Rotherham Central, Swinton, Mexborough, Conisbrough, Doncaster, Bentley|
|Sheffield to Hull||1||Meadowhall, Rotherham Central, Swinton, Mexborough, Conisbrough, Doncaster, Kirk Sandall, Hatfield & Stainforth, Thorne North, Goole, Saltmarshe (irregular), Gilberdyke, Broomfleet (irregular), Brough, Ferriby and Hessle|
|Sheffield to Bridlington||1||Meadowhall, Doncaster, Goole, Brough, Hull, Cottingham, Beverley, Arram (limited), Hutton Cranswick, Driffield and Nafferton|
|Hull to Scarborough via Bridlington||1||Cottingham, Beverley, Arram (limited), Hutton Cranswick (irregular), Driffield, Nafferton (irregular), Bridlington, Bempton, Hunmanby, Filey and Seamer|
|Doncaster to Scunthorpe||1||Kirk Sandall, Hatfield & Stainforth, Thorne South, Crowle and Althorpe|
|Sheffield to Gainsborough Central
|1||Darnall, Woodhouse, Kiveton Bridge, Kiveton Park, Shireoaks, Worksop and Retford 3tpd on Saturdays extends to/from Cleethorpes calling at: Kirton Lindsey, Brigg, Barnetby, Habrough and Grimsby Town.|
|Barton-on-Humber to Cleethorpes||0.5||Barrow Haven, New Holland, Goxhill, Thornton Abbey, Ulceby, Habrough, Stallingborough, Healing, Great Coates, Grimsby Town, Grimsby Docks and New Clee|
|Lancashire & Cumbria Coast|
|Preston to Colne||1||Lostock Hall, Bamber Bridge, Pleasington, Cherry Tree, Mill Hill, Blackburn, Rishton, Church & Oswaldtwistle, Accrington, Huncoat, Hapton, Rose Grove, Burnley Barracks, Burnley Central, Brierfield and Nelson|
|Preston to Ormskirk||1||Croston, Rufford and Burscough Junction|
|Preston to Blackpool South||1||Kirkham & Wesham, Moss Side, Lytham, Ansdell & Fairhaven, St Annes-on-the-Sea, Squires Gate and Blackpool Pleasure Beach|
|Lancaster to Barrow-in-Furness||1||Carnforth, Silverdale (irregular), Arnside, Grange-over-Sands, Kents Bank (irregular), Cark (irregular), Ulverston and Dalton (irregular), Roose (irregular)|
Some trains extend to/from Manchester Airport via Preston, see above. Some trains extend to/from Carlisle, see below
|Barrow-in-Furness to Carlisle||1||Askam, Kirkby-in-Furness, Foxfield, Green Road, Millom, Silecroft, Bootle, Ravenglass, Drigg, Seascale, Sellafield, St Bees, Corkickle, Whitehaven, Parton, Harrington, Workington, Flimby, Maryport, Aspatria, Wigton and Dalston|
Some trains extend to/from Lancaster, see above
|Oxenholme Lake District to Windermere||1||Kendal, Burneside and Staveley|
some trains extend to/from Lancaster, Preston or Manchester Piccadilly
|Newcastle to Morpeth||1||Manors and Cramlington|
|Newcastle to Chathill||-||Manors, Cramlington, Morpeth, Pegswood, Widdrington, Acklington and Alnmouth
2 trains per day
|Tyne Valley, Durham Coast and Esk Valley Lines|
|Carlisle to Newcastle||1||Wetheral (1tp2h), Brampton (1tp2h), Haltwhistle, Bardon Mill (1tp2h), Haydon Bridge, Hexham, Prudhoe and MetroCentre |
trains either serve Wetheral and Brampton, or Bardon Mill
|Metrocentre to Newcastle||1||Dunston|
|Hexham to Nunthorpe||1||Corbridge, Riding Mill, Stocksfield, Prudhoe, Wylam, Blaydon, MetroCentre, Newcastle, Heworth, Sunderland, Seaham, Hartlepool, Seaton Carew, Billingham, Stockton, Thornaby, Middlesbrough, James Cook, Marton and Gypsy Lane|
Some trains terminate at Middlesbrough, with Whitby services providing the hourly Middlesbrough-Nunthorpe service. Other trains extend to Battersby or Danby
|Middlesbrough to Whitby||–||James Cook, Marton, Gypsy Lane, Nunthorpe, Great Ayton, Battersby, Kildale, Commondale, Castleton Moor, Danby, Lealholm, Glaisdale, Egton, Grosmont, Sleights and Ruswarp|
4 trains run each day, with an extra one in summer
|Tees Valley Line|
|Saltburn to Darlington (and Bishop Auckland)||2||Marske, Longbeck, Redcar East, Redcar Central, South Bank (1tph), Middlesbrough, Thornaby, Eaglescliffe, Allens West and Dinsdale. 1tph extends to Bishops Auckland, calling at North Road, Heighington, Newton Aycliffe and Shildon|
By December 2019, Northern plans to operate a network of twelve Northern Connect inter-urban express services – a franchise requirement. Most of these will be operated by brand-new Class 195 Civity diesel multiple units and Class 331 Civity electric multiple units, whilst the Middlesbrough to Carlisle via Newcastle route will be operated by refurbished Class 158 units. Electrification of the line between Oxenholme and Windermere was cancelled by the Government in 2017, so the Manchester Airport to Windermere route will be operated initially by Class 769 Flex trains instead, with Class 195 Civity trains taking over by the end of 2019.
Places that will be served by Northern Connect routes include Bradford, Chester, Halifax, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Middlesbrough, Nottingham, Newcastle, Preston, Sheffield, Barnsley, Lincoln, Wakefield, Wigan and York.
Northern Connect planned future routes and future rolling stock
|Colour||Route ||Via||Rolling Stock|
|Services introduced in May 2019|
|Blackpool North to Manchester Airport||Poulton-le-Fylde, Preston, Leyland, Buckshaw Parkway, Chorley, Horwich Parkway, Lostock (southbound) , Bolton, Salford Crescent, Deansgate, Manchester Oxford Road, Manchester Piccadilly, Mauldeth Road (irregular), Burnage (northbound), Gatley (northbound) and Heald Green
Peak and late evening services call additionally at Blackrod and usually Adlington.
|Liverpool Lime Street to Manchester Airport||Liverpool South Parkway, Warrington West (from July 2019), Warrington Central, Birchwood, Manchester Oxford Road, Manchester Piccadilly and Mauldeth Road
Sunday services serve East Didsbury instead of Mauldeth Road.
|Barrow-in-Furness/Windermere to Manchester Airport||Lancaster, Preston, Wigan North Western, Manchester Oxford Road, Manchester Piccadilly, Burnage (southbound), East Didsbury (northbound), Gatley (southbound) and Heald Green
Some services run as two services- Manchester-Preston and Lancaster-Windermere/Barrow
|Leeds to Lincoln||Wakefield Kirkgate, Barnsley, Meadowhall Interchange, Sheffield, Worksop, Retford, Gainsborough Lea Road and Saxilby||Class 195|
|Blackpool North to York||Poulton-le-Flyde, Preston, Blackburn, Accrington, Burnley Manchester Road, Hebden Bridge, Mytholmroyd, Sowerby Bridge, Halifax, Bradford Interchange, New Pudsey, Leeds, Cross Gates, Garforth, East Garforth, Micklefield, Church Fenton and Ulleskelf||Class 195|
|Chester to Leeds||Helsby, Frodsham, Runcorn East,Warrington Bank Quay,Earlestown, Newton-le-Willows, Manchester Victoria, Rochdale, Hebden Bridge, Mytholmroyd, Sowerby Bridge, Halifax, Bradford Interchange, New Pudsey and Bramley||Class 195|
|Services to be introduced in December 2019|
|Liverpool Lime Street to Leeds||Manchester Victoria, Rochdale, Halifax and Bradford Interchange||Class 195|
|Manchester Airport to Bradford Interchange||Manchester Piccadilly, Manchester Victoria, Rochdale and Halifax||Class 195|
|Carlisle to Middlesbrough||Hexham, MetroCentre and Newcastle||Class 158|
|Sheffield to Hull||Doncaster||Class 158 and Class 195|
|Bradford Interchange to Nottingham||Leeds, Wakefield Westgate, Sheffield and Chesterfield||Class 158 and Class 195|
Northern inherited the rolling stock operated by Northern Rail, namely Class 142, 144, 150, 153, 155, 156 and 158 diesel multiple units and Class 319, 321, 322, 323 and 333 electric multiple units. To operate services transferred from the TransPennine Express franchise, four Class 185 units were sublet from that franchise to Northern, with this later reducing to two units. As of the May 2019 timetable change, these sublet units have since returned to TPE. To provide additional peak time capacity on the Calder Valley Line, one Class 180 unit is sublet from Grand Central to Northern per weekday.
|Diesel multiple units|
|142 Pacer||DMU||75||121||2||79||Local and commuter services across the North||1985–87|
|144 Pacer||13||Local and commuter services in Yorkshire||1986–87|
|150/1 & 150/2 Sprinter||2||78||Local services across the North||1985–87|
|153 Super Sprinter||1||20||Local and commuter services across the North
Also used to boost capacity on peak time services
|155 Super Sprinter||2||7||
|156 Super Sprinter||47||Local, commuter and regional services across the North||1987–89|
|158/0 & 158/9
|180 Adelante||125||201||5||1||Calder Valley Line peak time services[nb 3]
(One unit is subleased from Grand Central)
|Electric multiple units|
|319/3 & 319/4||EMU||100||161||4||27[nb 4]||Electrified commuter services in Greater Manchester, Merseyside and from Blackpool||1987–90|
|321/9||100||161||4||3||Electrified commuter services in West Yorkshire||1991|
|322||5||Electrified commuter services in West Yorkshire||1990|
|323||90||140||3||17||Electrified commuter services in Greater Manchester, Cheshire, Staffordshire, Derbyshire and Merseyside||1992–93|
|333||100||161||4||16||Electrified commuter services in West Yorkshire||2000|
|City||December 2017 Peak Capacity
(07:59–10:00, seats + standing)
|December 2019 Peak Capacity|
(07:59–10:00, seats + standing)
The withdrawal of Class 142 and 144 trains, known commonly as Pacers, was scheduled to commence in November 2018, with the last to be removed from traffic in October 2019. Other trains due to leave Northern's fleet are the Class 153 diesel multiple unit and Class 321, Class 322 and Class 323 electric multiple units.
As part of the franchise agreement, there is a requirement to undertake refurbishment of all retained vehicles comprising diesel multiple units; Class 150 (162 veh), 155 (14 veh), 156 (94 veh), 158 (114 veh), 170 (48 veh) and electric multiple units; Class 319 (128 veh) and 333 (64). This includes new flooring and seat coverings, internal repaint, CCTV, Wi-Fi and provision of electric sockets. The 16 Class 333 units are also to have two vehicles per set modified to a “metro style” configuration to increase passenger carrying capacity per unit by at least 19%. Class 319 and 333 units are also to have pantograph monitoring equipment installed. 
Northern has ordered 101 brand new trains from Spanish rolling stock manufacturer CAF. A total of 58 Class 195 diesel multiple units and 43 Class 331 electric multiple units are scheduled to enter service in July 2019.
A number of other trains are to be cascaded to Northern from other operators. A total of 49 diesel trains are due to join the fleet from Great Western Railway, ScotRail and West Midlands Trains between 2017 and 2019. An additional eighteen two car diesel units, comparable to a Class 170, are due to join the fleet by December 2022.
In 2018, five Class 153 units transferred from GWR on a short term basis to provide extra capacity.
|Class||Image||Type||Top speed||Carriages||Number||Routes||Built||In Service|
|Diesel multiple units|
|150/9 Sprinter||DMU||75||121||3||12[nb 5]||Services including:
|195/0 & 195/1 Civity||DMU||100||161||2||25||Northern Connect services||2017–19||July 2019|
|TBC[nb 6]||DMU||100||161||2||18||Services to be confirmed||TBC||2022[nb 7]|
|Electric multiple units|
|331/0 & 331/1 Civity||EMU||100||161||3||31||2017–19||2019|
|Bi-mode multiple units|
The Department of Transport and Rail North have specified that the franchise must ensure that at least 50% of the aggregate Train Mileage of Passenger Services provided in each Reporting Period is operated as Driver Controlled Operation (DCO).
DCO is defined as "operation of a train by a driver alone without the need for a conductor (or any other Franchise Employee)." The franchise further specifies that "Where ... a Passenger Service is operated as Driver Controlled Operation the Franchisee shall ... plan for an additional Franchise Employee (that is, in addition to the driver) to be present on such Passenger Service."
The RMT Union are unhappy about this change, as roles currently undertaken by guards would instead be undertaken by drivers (such as releasing the doors once the train has stopped at a station). Although Northern have said they would be willing to guarantee that a second member of staff would be on board, the use of DCO could theoretically make it possible to run a train without a guard, and as a result, the union have called industrial action over the change.
On 28 November 2018, it was announced that Transport for the North is against support for the removal of an additional franchise employee on Northern services, and urged the RMT Union to suspend the current strike action. On 29 November, RMT announced that it had offered to suspend industrial action under the condition that trains will never run without a guard on the train, however, on 30 November, the union confirmed that it will continue industrial action as planned.
On 7 February 2019, the RMT announced that it had suspended further industrial action on Northern, bringing an end to consecutive strikes on Saturdays since 25 August 2018. 
A new depot will open in Wigan in December 2019, with space for 32 trains. The depot will be adapted from a freight yard at Springs Branch railway sidings in Ince-in-Makerfield and will cost £46 million.
Northern currently has depots for its train crew at Barrow-in-Furness, Blackburn, Blackpool North, Buxton, Carlisle, Darlington (drivers), Doncaster, Harrogate, Huddersfield, Hull, Liverpool Lime Street, Leeds, Manchester Piccadilly, Manchester Victoria, Middlesbrough (guards), Newcastle, Sheffield, Skipton, Wigan Wallgate, Workington and York.
Arriva operates the Northern franchise, the second largest rail franchise in the UK, and runs regional and commuter services across the region
Users of rail networks in several major cities across England have fallen. Passengers of services to Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester and Cardiff have suffered the largest decline, with many citing chaotic delays and cancellations as a number of reasons for no longer frequently using rail network.
Northern’s punctuality and reliability hit an all-time low for the July–September period, according to industry regulator the Office of Rail and Road
Northern had the lowest satisfaction rate for politeness out of all train companies in the survey; in fact, it came last or in the bottom three of the 18 train companies in every aspect of the complaints process that passengers were asked about.
“If I want to be in town for 9am, I leave at 7am, because I cannot squeeze myself onto the last rush hour trains. Then there are no trains between 8.24am and 9.24am.”
Questions have been raised by MPs over whether Abellio overbid for Greater Anglia, which suffered a further 2% decline in passengers last quarter, or Arriva for Northern, where customer numbers fell 9% in a strike-hit period.
As an industry we are really sorry for the impact that this has had on customers. Congestion on the network within the Manchester area has been a factor in the disruption and as all our services run through this corridor this caused a knock-on effect on our services across the North.
Media related to Arriva Rail North at Wikimedia Commons
Northern Rail (Serco-Abellio)
| Operator of Northern franchise
Bramhall railway station serves the district of Bramhall in the Metropolitan Borough of Stockport, Greater Manchester, England. The station is 9¾ miles (16 km) south of Manchester Piccadilly on the Stafford to Manchester Line, and was opened in 1845 by the London & North Western Railway.Broad Green railway station
Broad Green railway station is a railway station serving the Broadgreen district of Liverpool, England. It is situated 3 1⁄2 miles (5.6 km) east of Liverpool Lime Street. Electrically powered trains have been operating through then station since March 2015, using Class 319 EMUs. .Bryn railway station
Bryn railway station is in Bryn, in the Metropolitan Borough of Wigan, Greater Manchester, England. It is the nearest station to Ashton-in-Makerfield. The station is situated on the electrified Liverpool to Wigan Line 16 1⁄4 miles (26.2 km) northeast of Liverpool Lime Street and 3 3⁄4 miles (6.0 km) south of Wigan. The station, and all trains serving it, are operated by Northern.Eccles railway station
Eccles railway station serves the town of Eccles, Greater Manchester, England. It was opened on 15 September 1830 by the Liverpool and Manchester Railway (L&M).Greenfield railway station
Greenfield railway station in the village of Greenfield, Greater Manchester, England, is on the Huddersfield Line 12 miles (20 km) northeast of Manchester Victoria. It is the final station in Greater Manchester before the West Yorkshire boundary.Halewood railway station
Halewood railway station is in Halewood, Merseyside, England. The station, and all trains serving it, is operated by Northern.Heald Green railway station
Heald Green railway station serves the suburb of Heald Green in Stockport, England.
The station is on the Styal Line, opened in 1909 by the London & North Western Railway, between Gatley and Wilmslow. To the south of the station is Heald Green Junction, a triangular junction for the branch to Manchester Airport.This two-platform station is used by Northern; there are regular services to Manchester Piccadilly and Manchester Airport with some services continuing to Wilmslow and Crewe.Heaton Chapel railway station
Heaton Chapel railway station serves the Heaton Chapel and Heaton Moor districts of Stockport, Greater Manchester, England.
The station is 4½ miles (7 km) south of Manchester Piccadilly towards Stockport
Opened as Heaton Chapel & Heaton Moor in 1852 by LNWR [1846 to 1922] then by LMS until 1948 when British Railways was formed, the station was renamed Heaton Chapel on 6 May 1974.Hough Green railway station
Hough Green railway station is a railway station to the west of Widnes in Halton, Cheshire, England. It is recorded in the National Heritage List for England as a designated Grade listed building. The station is on the Liverpool-Warrington-Manchester Line 10 miles 42 chains (16.9 km) east of Liverpool Lime Street and all trains serving it are operated by Northern.Irlam railway station
Irlam railway station in Irlam, Greater Manchester, England, is 8 3⁄4 miles (14.1 km) west of Manchester Oxford Road on the Manchester to Liverpool Line, and is operated by Northern.Mossley railway station
Mossley railway station serves the town of Mossley, Greater Manchester, England. It lies on the Huddersfield Line 9.9 miles (16 km) north-east of Manchester Victoria and is managed by Northern.Moston railway station
Moston railway station in Moston, Manchester, England, is 4 miles (6 km) north of Manchester Victoria on the Caldervale Line managed by Northern.
Moston station opened in February 1872. It is on Hollinwood Avenue, in New Moston, and is unstaffed, the station buildings having been demolished in the late 1990s. Tickets must be purchased on the train.Patricroft railway station
Patricroft railway station is in the Patricroft district of Eccles, Greater Manchester, England. The station is on Green Lane, just north of the junction with Cromwell Road and just east of the Bridgewater Canal. It is situated 5 miles (8.0 km) west of Manchester Victoria on the former Liverpool and Manchester Railway, which was electrified in stages between 2013 and 2015.
It is the closest railway station to the Worsley village area.Pemberton railway station
Pemberton railway station serves the Pemberton area of Wigan in Greater Manchester, England. It is on the Kirkby branch line from Wigan Wallgate.
The station was opened on 20 November 1848 by the Liverpool and Bury Railway. It on the A571 Billinge Road. The platforms are at the bottom of two ramps (one on each side) which until recently was cobbled on the Kirkby bound platform. Once on the platform, the line underneath the bridge is obscured by overgrown trees.
Pemberton is served by major bus routes 1 and 2 operated by Stagecoach Manchester which runs every 10 minutes combined from Wigan town centre.Prescot railway station
Prescot railway station serves the town of Prescot, Merseyside, England. It is situated on the electrified Liverpool to Wigan Line. The station, and all trains serving it, are operated by Northern. It was opened in 1871 by the London and North Western Railway, along with the line between Huyton and St. Helens Shaw Street - now known as St. Helens Central.Squires Gate railway station
Squires Gate railway station serves the Squires Gate area of the popular seaside resort of Blackpool, Lancashire, England, although it is located just outside the borough boundary. It lies on the Blackpool South to Colne line and is the nearest station to Blackpool International Airport. Squires Gate is located about 400 metres (1,300 ft) from Starr Gate tram stop on the Blackpool Tramway.Streethouse railway station
Streethouse railway station serves the village of Streethouse in West Yorkshire, England. It lies on the Pontefract Line, operated by Northern and is 4 miles (6 km) east of Wakefield Kirkgate station.
The station was opened by West Yorkshire Metro and Regional Railways on 12 May 1992 when the line between Wakefield and Pontefract was re-opened to passenger traffic.Thatto Heath railway station
Thatto Heath railway station is located in the Thatto Heath area of St Helens, Merseyside, England. It is situated on the electrified Liverpool to Wigan Line, 9 3⁄4 miles (15.7 km) northeast of Liverpool. The station, and all trains serving it, are operated by Northern. It opened with the line in 1871.Ulleskelf railway station
Ulleskelf railway station serves Ulleskelf in North Yorkshire, England. The station is 8.75 miles (14 km) south of York.Whiston railway station
Whiston railway station serves the village of Whiston in Merseyside, England. The station, and all trains serving it, are operated by Northern. It lies on the electrified northern route of the Liverpool to Manchester Line, the original Liverpool and Manchester Railway 7 1⁄2 miles (12 km) east of Liverpool Lime Street. It was opened in October 1990 by British Rail, at a cost of £420,000.
Train operating companies in the United Kingdom
|UK bus brands|
|United Arab Emirates|